Tag: Oaklawn Park

Jockey Martin Garcia and Charlatan are no longer 2020 Arkansas Derby winners. Oaklawn Park stewards stripped the Bob Baffert horse and his filly stablemate, Gamine of their May 2 victories for excessive amounts of lidocaine. (Image: Wesley Hitt/Getty)

Baffert Suspended 15 Days, Horses Disqualified for Positive Drug Tests

Oaklawn Park stewards suspended Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert for 15 days and stripped two of his prize horses of victories for their positive drug tests for excessive amounts of a banned substance. The decisions came down Wednesday, two days after a hearing addressing the excessive amounts of lidocaine […]

In winning the tougher second division of the Arkansas Derby, Nadal remained unbeaten. The Bob Baffert-trained cold also took over the Kentucky Derby points lead. (Image: Coady Photography)

What Did We Learn About Major Kentucky Derby Hopefuls?

The Arkansas Derby is behind us and a work-in-progress Kentucky Derby Trail lies in front of us. With tracks around the country beginning to open again in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, and Churchill Downs officials still mapping out prep races, it’s a good time to see where the […]

Combatant pulled off a mild upset in winning March's Santa Anita Handicap. The 5-year-old is a 4/1 favorite to win the Oaklawn Handicap. (Image: Benoit Photo for AP)

Older Horses Show Off Newest Tricks in Deep Oaklawn Handicap Field

This is scheduling as brilliant as the race its talent promises. In between the split Arkansas Derby divisions on Oaklawn Park’s dynamic closing day card rests the $600,000 Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap – a race punching far above its Grade 2 status. Put the grade aside. Far aside. This year’s […]

Bob Baffert's unbeaten Nadal is the 5/2 favorite in the tougher of the two Arkansas Derby divisions. (Image: AP)

Deep End of Arkansas Derby Pool is Smack Dab in Second Division

With the Arkansas Derby’s split divisions, here runs the talent. The Arkansas Derby’s second division features your graded-stakes winners, your low-odds Kentucky Derby futures picks and the horses owning Derby prep victories. Here is the Arkansas Derby’s varsity division – the second division. This is where you find your Louisiana […]

Charlatan, seen here winning a March allowance by 10 1/4 lengths at Santa Anita, enters his first stakes race Saturday. He's in the Arkansas Derby's first division. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Split Decisions: Arkansas Derby Breaks Into Two Divisions

Given the intense interest in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby amid the coronavirus pandemic, the move was as expected as it was unprecedented. And Oaklawn Park made it official Sunday, splitting Saturday’s final scheduled Kentucky Derby prep into two divisions. Both 11-horse divisions will race for a $500,000 purse, and […]

Storm the Court was a 45/1 shot to win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last November. He'll face shorter odds, but tougher competition in the Arkansas Derby. (Image: Eclipse Photography)

Storm the Court Ready to Conquer New Turf in Arkansas Derby

Juvenile champion Storm the Court will storm a non-California track for the first time at next week’s $750,000 Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, trainer Peter Eurton announced this week. The 1 1/8-mile race at Oaklawn Park remains the only official Kentucky Derby prep currently on the schedule, which explains its popularity. […]

More racing coming at fans could be on the agenda if Tampa Bay Downs receives an extension of its season. (Image: SVPhotography)

Tampa Bay Downs Might Extend Racing Meet Well Into May

Welcome news greeted horsemen as they read Friday’s overnight entries list for one of the few North American racetracks still running live racing amid the COVID-19 pandemic. “Attention horsemen: We are seriously considering extending the meet. We need everyone to adhere to the protocols for COVID-19 that were handed out […]

Such is the pent-up racing demand and standout crop of 3-year-olds, Oaklawn Park may split the Arkansas Derby into two separate races. (Image: Eclipse Sportswire/Getty)

Overflowing Arkansas Derby Field May Require Two Divisions

It’s the only Kentucky Derby prep currently on the calendar, which explains why the Arkansas Derby is popular these days. But 99 nominations popular? To paraphrase Roy Scheider’s character from “Jaws” – “Someone’s gonna need a bigger race.” Oaklawn Park published the Arkansas Derby nominations list over the weekend, a […]

Come Dancing, seen here blowing away the Distaff Stakes Field by 7 3/4 lengths last April, is the favorite for Saturday's Apple Blossom Handicap. It is her first two-turn race. (Image: NYRA)

Apple Blossom Handicap Blooms As Brightest Filly and Mare Race To Date

This is the field quality you usually see racing in the Breeders’ Cup in November, not the Apple Blossom Handicap in April. Deep, talented, accomplished, versatile in terms of running styles – it’s all there. And it’s there at Oaklawn Park. The $600,000, Grade 1 Apple Blossom Handicap is typically […]

Serengeti Empress, seen here winning the Kentucky Oaks last May, has endured a roller-coaster career. She is the favorite coming into Saturday's Apple Blossom Stakes. (Image: Churchill Downs)

Apple Blossom Favorite Serengeti Empress Blazes a Roller-Coaster Trail

She looms over the Apple Blossom Handicap field as a first-among-equals favorite. But royal resume, career victories and pedigree aside, Serengeti Empress wears the uneasy crown of a favorite with more to prove, and a desire to exit the roller coaster marking her career to date. Not that you’d turn […]

Jockey Javier Castellano has more reason to give a thumbs-up than winning his 5,000th race. He exited quarantine and plans to ride again May 1 in Arkansas. (Image: Getty Images)

Hall of Fame Jockey Castellano Leaves Quarantine, Plans Racing Return

Hall of Fame jockey Javier Castellano, the first major North American racing figure to test positive for the coronavirus, is out of quarantine and back in New York. He plans on returning to racing May 1 at Oaklawn Park. After testing positive for the coronavirus on March 24, Castellano spent […]

Gulfstream Park, the site of this Saturday's Florida Derby, is one of two American parks to institute regulations that jockeys and their agents are trying to navigate. (Image: Gulfstream Park)

Oaklawn, Gulfstream Institute New Jockey Restrictions For Riders

New jockey restrictions put in place by Oaklawn and Gulfstream Park sent the rider colonies at those two parks – and elsewhere — into a scramble of altered plans, missed racing days, and enforced quarantines. The new regulations, placed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, have jockeys and their agents […]

Even by moving the Arkansas Derby from April to May, Oaklawn Park's role as one of the last Kentucky Derby preps won't come into play in 2020. (Image: Oaklawn Park)

Oaklawn Park Moves Arkansas Derby From April To May

Oaklawn Park in Arkansas became the latest facility to adjust its calendar in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, moving its flagship race – the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby – from Saturday, April 11 to Saturday, May 2. That is Oaklawn Park’s closing date. It was also the original date for […]

Until further notice, fans won't be able to enjoy this spectacular view of the San Gabriel Mountains behind the Santa Anita finish line. The track is closed to spectators. (Image: Santa Anita Park)

Last Sport Standing? Horse Racing and Betting Continues, Just Not In Person

From a betting standpoint, the coronavirus outbreak that has canceled or suspended events across the sporting spectrum means America’s horse racing tracks are some of the few venues with action available to punters. Provided you have a remote betting account or betting app. Due to the threat of coronavirus and […]