$50,000 Midshipman Filly Leads Penultimate Session of Keeneland November Sale

Blue Sky Stables paid $50,000 for a weanling filly by Midshipman for the top price from Thursday’s 11th session of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale.

Keeneland sold 134 horses for $775,500 for an average of $5,787 and a median of $3,000. There are no comparable figures from 2017.

Cumulatively through 11 sessions of the 12-day sale, 2,420 horses have grossed $187,966,900 for an average of $77,672 and a median of $30,000.

Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent, consigned the session topper, who is out of the winning Wildcat Heir mare Dancing My Way and from the family of Grade 3 winner Marshua’s Echelon.

With the purchase of the filly, Blue Sky Stables is the session’s leading buyer.

Two horses sold for $45,000 apiece.

Levy Bloodstock purchased the first, Fantastic Girl, a 3-year-old daughter of Pioneerof the Nile cataloged as a racing or broodmare prospect. Consigned by Paramount Sales, agent, she is out of stakes winner Ayla Bella, by Touch Gold, and is a half-sister to stakes-placed Lucky for You.

Also bringing $45,000 was a weanling filly by Point of Entry sold to Renee Dailey, agent. Gainesway, agent, consigned the daughter of the winning Grand Slam mare Grand Finesse who is from the family of Grade 1 winner Brocco.

Paramount Sales was the session’s leading consignor with sales of $165,000 for 20 horses.

Friday’s closing session of the November Sale begins at 10 a.m. The sale is streamed live on Keeneland.com.

Keeneland Closes Fall Meet with Record All-Sources Wagering

Keeneland successfully concluded its 2018 Fall Meet on Saturday with Fall Meet record all-sources wagering of more than $144 million, driven by Fall Meet records for single-day all-sources, Pick Four and Pick Five handle.

All-sources wagering on live racing at Keeneland (not including whole-card simulcasting at Keeneland) totaled $144,309,944 for the 17-day Fall Meet, held Oct. 5-27. The figure surpassed the previous record of $139,660,204 set during the 17-day 2013 Fall Meet. The total increased 18.57 percent from the $121,712,702 posted for last year’s 17-day Fall Meet. Average daily all-sources wagering of $8,488,820 rose 18.57 percent from $7,159,571 in 2017.

“The quality of Keeneland’s racing program is reflected in the record wagering we experienced this Fall,” Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason said. “Full, competitive race fields representing the nation’s top owners, trainers and jockeys attracted the support of fans across the country. We thank the Central Kentucky community, our horsemen and corporate partners for a very gratifying racing season.”

Keeneland set Fall Meet wagering records for single-day all-sources handle and Pick Four and Pick Five pools on Fall Stars Saturday, Oct. 6. Total all-sources handle of $17,122,465 exceeded the previous Fall Meet single-day record of $15,926,396 set Oct. 8, 2016.

Keeneland smashed its Fall Meet Pick Four and Pick Five wagering records, both also from Oct. 8, 2016. The All-Stakes Pick Four handle of $737,408 broke the previous record of $479,166. Wagering on the All-Stakes Pick Five totaled $619,106 to best the former record of $496,723.

On-track attendance and wagering were down slightly when compared to the 2017 Fall Meet, due in part to unseasonably hot weather during opening Fall Stars Weekend. On-track attendance of 241,806 dipped 10.63 percent from last fall’s near-record 270,555. Average daily attendance was 14,224 versus 15,915 in 2017.

On-track wagering totaled $16,419,870, a decrease of 6.69 percent from last year’s $17,597,035. Average daily on-track handle was $965,874 compared to last fall’s $1,035,120.

Fall Meet Racing 

Fall Meet average daily purse money increased 4.7 percent to a Fall Meet record $730,873, ranking the season among the richest racing programs in the country. Average starters per race increased 2.17 percent from 9.2 last fall to 9.4.

Fifty-four horses that raced or trained at Keeneland in October were pre-entered in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, to be held Nov. 2-3 at Churchill Downs.

Ten of those horses secured a berth in the Breeders’ Cup via Breeders’ Cup Challenge races held during the Fall Meet. Nine “Win & You’re In” stakes headlined Keeneland’s blockbuster Fall Stars Weekend, Oct. 5-7.

Horses earning an automatic spot were: Darley Alcibiades (G1) winner Restless Rider (Tito’s Handmade Vodka Juvenile Fillies-G1), Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) winner Next Shares (Mile-G1), Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1) winner Knicks Go (Sentient Jet Juvenile-G1), First Lady (G1) winner A Raving Beauty (GER) (Maker’s Mark Filly and Mare Turf-G1), Juddmonte Spinster (G1) winner Blue Prize (ARG) (Distaff-G1), Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G2) winner Promises Fulfilled (TwinSpires Sprint-G1), Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) winner Golden Mischief (Filly and Mare Sprint-G1), Dixiana Bourbon (G3) winner Current (Juvenile Turf-G1) and inaugural Indian Summer winner Strike Silver (Juvenile Turf Sprint).

Concrete Rose won Keeneland’s 10th Breeders’ Cup Challenge race, the JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G2) on Oct. 10 to earn a position in the Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1).

The competition wasn’t limited to racing’s equine stars. Keeneland welcomed many of North America’s most talented riders, which featured such national leaders as Jose Ortiz, Javier Castellano, Mike Smith, Tyler Gaffalione, Julien Leparoux, Florent Geroux, John Velazquez, Luis Saez, Irad Ortiz Jr., Robby Albarado, Shug McGaughey, Corey Lanerie, Drayden Van Dyke, Gabriel Saez, Ricardo Santana Jr., Joe Bravo, Manny Franco and Brian Hernandez Jr.

Many of the sport’s top trainers also participated, among them Todd Pletcher, Steve Asmussen, Chad Brown, Mike Maker, Mark Casse, Graham Motion, Brad Cox, Wesley Ward, Kenny McPeek, Dale Romans, Rusty Arnold, Jim Cassidy, Eddie Kenneally, Richard Baltas, Neil Drysdale, Ian Wilkes, Joe Sharp, Ignacio Correas IV, D. Wayne Lukas and Nick Zito.

“Thanks to our horsemen for giving fans so many memorable racing moments this fall,” Keeneland Vice President of Racing and Sales Bob Elliston said. “It was exceptionally fun to watch the next generation – trainers like John Ortiz and Norm Casse and riders like Edgar Morales – enjoy success during the race meet.”

John Ortiz captured the first graded stakes win of his career when Zulu Alpha won Keeneland’s Sycamore (G3). Norm Casse, who recently began training on his own after working as an assistant to his father, Canadian Hall of Fame trainer Mark Casse, won three races at Keeneland this fall. Apprentice jockey Edgar Morales accumulated nine wins to rank among the Fall Meet’s leading riders. Jockeys Jarred Journet and C. J. McMahon earned their first Keeneland victories and apprentice Declan Carroll celebrated his first career win during the meet.

Fall Meet Special Events Offer Fun and Philanthropy

In keeping with its mission to support the Central Kentucky community, Keeneland hosted a number of special events during the meet that exemplified its philanthropic goals.

Keeneland raised more than $130,000 during Make-A-Wish Day on Oct. 11, teaming with local Thoroughbred farms and organizations to grant wishes for 10 deserving children who, along with their families, enjoyed a VIP day at the races. The following day, Keeneland, in partnership with the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, hosted College Scholarship Day, which attracted thousands of students and gave away $30,000 in scholarship money, including two $10,000 Runhappy Scholarships. Jim and Linda McIngvale, owners of champion Runhappy, who stands at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky, presented the Runhappy Scholarships.

On opening Saturday, Oct. 6, Keeneland donated $25,000 to Parkinson’s disease research in honor of Ann Hanley, wife of WinStar Farm General Manager David Hanley. Diagnosed with Parkinson’s at age 49, she founded the Ann Hanley Parkinson’s Research Fund in 2016 to underwrite research into an experimental treatment available only at the University of Kentucky.

Current members of the Keeneland jockey colony joined retired riders for an autograph session on Oct. 7 that raised $6,582 for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund.

Heroes Day Presented by City Barbeque on Oct. 21 recognized the men and women who serve our community. All active-duty and veteran military, first responders and their families received free general admission and lunch courtesy of City Barbeque. A spectacular flag unfurling on the main track by Henry Clay High School’s JROTC followed the day’s third race. Keeneland and City Barbeque partnered to donate $6,000 to benefit the Kentucky State Police Foundation.

Keeneland raised $3,400 this fall in support of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance via the Handicapper of the Day series on its @BetKeeneland Twitter handle. The Handicapper of the Day feature challenges nationally prominent horseplayers to wager over the course of a race day with a bankroll to benefit the organization. The TAA accredits, inspects and awards grants to approved aftercare organizations to retire, retrain and rehome Thoroughbreds.

Fall Meet Leaders

The race for Fall Meet leading owner, trainer and jockey honors went down to closing day.

Ken and Sarah Ramsey won their 21st leading owner title at Keeneland with six wins during the Fall Meet. Eclipse Award winners, the Ramseys are the all-time leading owners at Keeneland by number of races won and meet titles won.

G. Watts Humphrey Jr. and Susan and Jim Hill tied for second in the owner standings with three wins each.

Seven-time Eclipse Award winner Todd Pletcher closed the meet with nine wins to claim his fifth leading trainer title at Keeneland. Pletcher won three races on opening Sunday, led by the Dixiana Bourbon (G3) with Current.

Mike Maker was second with eight wins. Steve Asmussen won seven races to finish third.

Chad Brown won two Grade 1 stakes during the fall: First Lady with A Raving Beauty (GER) and Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Presented by Lane’s End with Rushing Fall.

Eclipse Award-winning jockeys finished 1-2 in the rider standings. Tyler Gaffalione recorded 15 wins during his first full meet of riding at Keeneland to earn leading rider honors. Gaffalione captured two stakes wins: the $1 million Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) with Next Shares and the Lexus Raven Run (G2) with Shamrock Rose.

Finishing second with 12 victories was Julien Leparoux, who won the Indian Summer with Strike Silver.

Three riders – Jose Ortiz, Ricardo Santana Jr. and Brian Hernandez Jr. – tied for third place with 10 wins each.

2018 Fall Meet at a Glance (Oct. 5-27)

  Fall 2018 Fall 2017 %  Change
All-Sources Handle on Keeneland $144,309,944 $121,712,702 +18.57%
Avg. Daily All-Sources Handle on Keeneland $8,488,820 $7,159,571 +18.57%
Total On-Track Handle $16,419,870 $17,597,035 -6.69%
Avg. Daily On-Track Handle $965,874 $1,035,120 -6.69%
Total Attendance 241,806 270,555 -10.63%
Avg. Daily Attendance 14,224 15,915 -10.63%

Leofric Outduels Prime Attraction to Win Closing-Day Hagyard Fayette

Steve Landers Racing’s 8-5 second choice Leofric outbattled Southern California invader Prime Attraction to prevail by a head and win the 61st running of the $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2) on closing day of Keeneland’s 17-day Fall Meet before a crowd of 14,927.

Trained by Brad Cox and ridden by Florent Geroux, Leofric tracked pace-setting Prime Attraction through fractions of :24.80, :48.97 and 1:12.74. Geroux shifted Leofric into the three path in the far turn and dueled with Prime Attraction and jockey Kent Desormeaux down the lane before pushing his head in front of that rival at the finish.

Leofric covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.87 and earned $120,000 to increase his bankroll to $650,340 with his seventh victory in 13 starts. The Hagyard Fayette win marked Leofric’s fourth victory in six starts this year. He has competed at five race tracks in 2018, scoring his first stakes victory two races ago in the Aug. 4 West Virginia Governor’s (G3) at Mountaineer.

A graduate of two Keeneland sales, Leofric is a 5-year-old son of Candy Ride (ARG) out of the Unbridled’s Song mare Lady Godiva.

Leofric returned $5.40, $2.80 and $2.40. Prime Attraction paid $4.20 and $3.60. Finishing four lengths behind in third was 18-1 choice Nice Not Nice, who paid $5.40 to show under Gabriel Saez.

Hence ran fourth and was followed in order by Rated R Superstar, favored Hofburg and Scuba.

Keeneland Daily Results and Activity


Saturday, October 27
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Claiming – $20,000 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Claiming – $30,000 $24,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Claiming – $20,000 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Allowance $69,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Allowance $69,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Hagyard Fayette S. $200,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 10 Allowance $71,000 Overnight Overnight


California Invader Prime Attraction Ready for Closing-Day Hagyard Fayette

The 2-1 morning-line favorite for Saturday’s $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2), the closing-day feature of Keeneland’s 17-day Fall Meet, is D P Racing’s Prime Attraction, who has been chasing the likes of Accelerate and Catapult back home in Southern California.

Those two are expected to compete Nov. 3 in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs with Accelerate in the $6 million Classic (G1) and Catapult in the $2 million Mile (G1).

Meanwhile, the 1 1/8-mile Hagyard Fayette made sense for Prime Attraction’s next race, his first outside California, said trainer Jim Cassidy.

“It was a good spot,” Cassidy said. “The distance is right. He’s doing well. We had nothing out there (in California) for him.”

“We’d have loved to be in the Breeders’ Cup,” owner Deron Pearson said, “but we didn’t have enough luck to beat a couple of those horses along the way to get there. The plan is to run him here and run him in the Clark (G1 at Churchill Nov. 23) if he does well here.”

In 2014, D P Racing paid $335,000 for Prime Attraction, a son of Unbridled’s Song, at Keeneland’s September Yearling Sale. The colt’s dam, the A.P. Indy mare Strawberry Sense, is a half-sister to champion Vindication.

“He was the best-looking horse I saw in the sale – that’s why I called him Prime Attraction,” Pearson said.

Prime Attraction, now 5, has four wins, including the 2017 Native Diver (G3), in 18 starts with earnings of $459,545. He was second to Accelerate in this year’s San Pasqual (G2) and third to that rival in the TVG Pacific Classic (G1).

In the Hagyard Fayette, Prime Attraction will start from the 1 post with Kent Desormeaux aboard.

Leading Pearson’s success at Keeneland is 2004 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) winner Ticker Tape (GB), owned in partnership with Jim Ford and Jack Sweesy. His Yahilwa was third in the 2015 Juddmonte Spinster (G1) and in her next start ran at Keeneland in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1).

Ticker Tape and Yahilwa both were trained by Cassidy, who also won the 2010 Central Bank Ashland (G1) with Evening Jewel.

The Hagyard Fayette marks the start of a week of notable racing action for Pearson. His Grade 3 winnerPricedtoperfection, also at Keeneland with Cassidy, is expected to run in Churchill’s Chilukki (G2) on the Nov. 3 Breeders’ Cup undercard.

That same afternoon, Santa Monica (GB) – owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Madaket Stables and
D P Racing – is to compete in the $2 million Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1). Chad Brown trains Santa Monica.

Princess Causeway Captures Friday’s Featured Heaven Trees Purse

Winchester Place Thoroughbreds’ 7-2 favorite Princess Causeway edged Boxwood in deep stretch to score a half-length victory in Friday’s featured $69,000 Heaven Trees Purse before a crowd of 10,593. (Click here for a replay of the race.)

The 1-mile race, originally scheduled for the turf, was moved to the sloppy main track. Princess Causeway’s time was 1:38.62.

Ridden by Chris Landeros for trainer Ian Wilkes, Princess Causeway is a 2-year-old daughter of Giant’s Causeway out of the A.P. Indy mare A. P. Investment. Bred by Calumet Farm, she earned $41,400 for Friday’s victory and increased her earnings to $130,350. In winning her second consecutive race, she improved her record to 4-2-1-0.

Princess Causeway paid $9.40,  $6.40 and $4.20. Boxwood, ridden by Jose Ortiz, returned $6.40 and $4.20. Finishing third was Lightscameraaction, who paid $4.80 under Brian Hernandez Jr.

Saturday is closing day of Keeneland’s 2018 Fall Meet. The 10-race program begins at 1:05 p.m. ET. The featured event is the 61st running of the $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2), the ninth race with a post time of 5:30 p.m.

Keeneland Daily Results and Activity


Friday, October 26
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Maiden Claiming – $15,000 $15,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Claiming – $50,000 $36,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Claiming – $20,000 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Allowance $71,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Allowance $69,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Allowance $69,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 10 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight


Annathela Prevails in Thursday’s Featured Siena Purse

Michael and Reiko Baum’s 18-1 shot Annathela withstood a challenge from Mines and Magic to score a neck victory in Thursday’s featured $72,212 Siena Purse before a crowd of 9,068. (Click here for a replay of the race.)

Trained by Rusty Arnold and ridden by Brian Hernandez Jr., Annathela covered 6½ furlongs on the fast main track in 1:16.18.

Annathela, a Keeneland sales graduate, is a 5-year-old daughter of Elusive Quality out of the Storm Cat mare Ethel Anna. She earned $43,800 for the victory, increasing her career earnings to $246,587 with a 20-4-7-2 record.

Annathela paid $39.20, $13.40 and $9.40 for the win. Mines and Magic, ridden by Edgar Morales, returned $5.60 and $4.20. Finishing third was Sister Nation, who paid $4.80 under Ricardo Santana Jr.

Friday is the penultimate day of Keeneland’s 2018 Fall Meet. The 10-race program begins at 1:05 p.m. ET.

Keeneland Daily Results and Activity


Thursday, October 25
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Claiming – $16,000 $23,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Claiming – $20,000 $24,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Claiming – $7,500 $18,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Maiden Claiming – $50,000 $23,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Allowance $69,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Allowance Optional Claiming – $80,000 $73,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Maiden Special Weight $67,000 Overnight Overnight

Final Entries

Saturday, October 27
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Claiming – $20,000 $20,000
Race 2 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000
Race 3 Claiming – $30,000 $24,000
Race 4 Maiden Special Weight $67,000
Race 5 Maiden Special Weight $67,000
Race 6 Claiming – $20,000 $20,000
Race 7 Allowance $69,000
Race 8 Allowance $69,000
Race 9 Hagyard Fayette S. $200,000
Race 10 Allowance $71,000

Balandeen Rallies to Win Wednesday’s Featured Fawn Leap Purse and Give Hartman a Training Triple

Joey Keith Davis’ Balandeen fought back along the rail after being passed in the stretch to defeat favored Hot Shot Kid by a head to win the $73,000 Fawn Leap Purse for 3-year-olds and up before a Wednesday afternoon crowd of 10,450. (Click here for a video of the race.)

The victory gave trainer Chris Hartman his third winner of the afternoon from three starters. He also won the fourth with Shesomajestic ($7.40) and the fifth with Gettysburg ($5.20).

Ridden by Julien Leparoux, Balandeen covered the 7 furlongs on a fast main track in 1:22.51.

A Keeneland sales graduate, Balandeen is a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Bernardini out of the Discreet Cat mare Mamma Kimbo. Wednesday’s victory was worth $43,800 and increased his earnings to $339,215 with a record of 24-6-3-2.

Balandeen returned $7.80, $4.20 and $2.80. Hot Shot Kid, ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr., returned $3 and $2.20 with Majestic Affair paying $2.40 to show under Shaun Bridgmohan.

Racing continues Thursday with a nine-race program that begins at 1:05 p.m. ET. The Pick Six carryover is $29,822.25.

Saturday is closing day of Keeneland’s 17-day Fall Meet.