The Brock Talk

Friday, November 13, 2009

Hollywood Park Attracts Breeders' Cup Stars

Hollywood Park, draped in a cloud of uncertainty about their future and opening the Fall meeting on of all days Friday the 13th, has been blessed with plenty of good news this week from Breeders' Cup horsemen.

Trainer Bobby Frankel assistant Humberto Ascanio has indicated that Ventura, second in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (gr. 1) at Santa Anita, is expected to return in Hollywood Park's $300,000 Matriarch (gr. IT) on Nov. 28. Frankel, who ha been absent from the barn for sometime battling cancer, has won the one-mile turf race a record eight times.

Ventura, who is expected to retire to the breeding farm for the 2010 breeding season, won the 2008 Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint and has won two of five starts including the grade 1 Woodbine Mile in Canada this year.

The 2-year-old racing for the 27-day Autumn meeting at Hollywood Park also got a boost from Kentucky-based trainer Kenneth McPeek when he announced that his powerful group of Breeders' Cup freshmen would stay in Southern California.

The two biggest young stars, Noble's Promise and Beautician are scheduled to run in the track's premier 2-year-old races on the weekend of Dec. 19-20. Noble's Promise, third in the Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. 1), is being pointed for the $750,000 Cash Call Futurity (gr. 1) while Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. 1) runner-up Beautician is scheduled to run the next day in the $300,000 Hollywood Starlet (gr. 1).

McPeek has also said that Bridgetown (2nd in Juvenile Turf), House of Grace (3rd in Juvenile Fillies Turf) and Juvenile Fillies eighth-place finisher Connie and Michael will remain in Southern California.


Amateurcapper said...


Great news about Ken McPeak leaving his juvy crop behind. With so much negative surrounding the synthetics, having the Breeders' Cup at Santa Anita has given the maligned main tracks at least this one positive.

Watch out for VENTURA going two turns...she's not the most honest mare. Once she hits the lead she tends to pull herself up. Garrett Gomez waited too long in the BC F&M Sprint because he didn't want to hit the lead too early. Trouble is, INFORMED DECISION was tracking a relatively slow pace and got a big jump on the dead closer.

Check out VENTURA's PP's...hard to imagine her late energy being "outgamed" but that's what happened in the G.2 Cash Call Mile in '08 when DIAMOND DIVA re-rallied on the rail to nip her. She lost her other two turn race, the G.3 Distaff Mile @ CD on a "good" track so any kind of cut in the grass would be a major disadvantage.

Brian Zipse said...

Hi Brock, long time reader, first time comment writer here. I am stoked for the big races at Hollywood, Churchill, and Aqueduct over the long Thanksgiving weekend. Thank you for continuing to remind us that the season is far from over.