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Barn notes 1/27

Barn notes 1/27

Apprehender Out to Capture Southwest After Flashy Debut

 

On a raw, stormy day, the Dream Farm LLC’s Apprehender was like a lightning strike in his debut at Oaklawn Thursday and showed he is a contender for the $250,000 Southwest Stakes (G3) Feb. 20.

 

Calling the gelded son of Posse one of the best horses she’s ever trained, trainer Ingrid Mason needed to be convinced to race the 3-year-old in the 5 1/2-furlong maiden contest because of concerns about a muddy track and the short distance. Consider those concerns dismissed after a 7 ½-length romp under jockey Inosencio Diego.

 

“I knew he was a nice horse and I’ve thought highly of him since I got him, but I never expected him to freak like that,” said Mason the morning after what was her fifth win this season. “He’s a running fool, this horse, and I think he’s going to get better going longer.

Barn notes 1/27

Barn notes 1/27

Apprehender Out to Capture Southwest After Flashy Debut

 

On a raw, stormy day, the Dream Farm LLC’s Apprehender was like a lightning strike in his debut at Oaklawn Thursday and showed he is a contender for the $250,000 Southwest Stakes (G3) Feb. 20.

 

Calling the gelded son of Posse one of the best horses she’s ever trained, trainer Ingrid Mason needed to be convinced to race the 3-year-old in the 5 1/2-furlong maiden contest because of concerns about a muddy track and the short distance. Consider those concerns dismissed after a 7 ½-length romp under jockey Inosencio Diego.

 

Barn notes 1/25

Barn notes 1/25

Easy Wednesday Works for Big Wednesday and Holy Heavens

 

Owner/trainer Joe Martin and his brothers Tim and Bill had stellar years in 2011. When Stephanie Got Even’s won the American Beauty Stakes at Oaklawn it attracted a too-good-to-pass-up sale price plus put the family on the radar of owners Drs. K.K. and Devi Jayaraman. Those events have Joe in position for even more success in the marquee divisions at Oaklawn this winter.

 

The sale helped the family upgrade their stock and they come up with Big Wednesday, winner of the Fitz Dixon Jr. Memorial Juvenile Stakes at Presque Isle Downs in Pennsylvania last October. Getting a string from “Dr. J” and his wife brought last year’s Martha Washington Stakes winner Holy Heavens to Joe’s barn. Both posted workouts Wednesday despite rainy weather.

 

Barn notes 1/19

Barn notes 1/19

Haran Out to Build Strong Winter at Oaklawn

 

Owner/trainer John Haran has made a good living for himself multitasking and keeping his options open. With a construction business, two farms and a racing operation at Oaklawn, weighing choices comes with the territory, and he is doing that with Darland, a mare he may send into Saturday’s $75,000 Pippin Stakes.

 

“I’ve tried three times to find a race for her, but it hasn’t worked out,” said Haran, 50, with an Irish brogue tipping where the owner of Eagle Valley Farm in Kentucky is originally from. “Depending on the size of the field I may have to go into the stakes. It’s a little bit over her head, but there just doesn’t seem to be many fillies ready to go long yet to make an easier race go.”

 

Barn notes 1/16

Barn notes 1/16

Arienza Seeks Short Road Back to Confidence in American Beauty

 

Photo of Arienza’s March 6, 2011 victory at Oaklawn attached. Credit: Oaklawn/Coady Photography

 

Living up to a lofty family name hasn’t been easy for Arienza, but Robert and Lawana Low’s regally bred daughter of 2002 Horse of the Year Azeri will get a chance to end a losing streak by sprinting in Sunday’s $50,000 American Beauty at Oaklawn.

 

The six-furlong sprint will mark the 4-year-old debut for Arienza as she attempts to get back to the form that saw her start her career in Hot Springs with two straight wins last winter including a win going a mile. She was no match for Joyful Victory in the Fantasy Stakes (G2) last April attempting to stretch out to 1 1/16th miles. Trainer Danny Peitz thinks and hopes she has top-level talent in longer races, but next weekend will be about changing the momentum.

 

Barn notes 1/13

Barn notes 1/13

Back to Work for Caleb’s Posse

 

Just a few days short of a year since he began his 3-year-old campaign that may result in multiple Eclipse Awards, Caleb’s Posse returned to the workout list Thursday at Oaklawn.

 

Owned by Cheyenne Stables and McNeil Stables, the now 4-year-old stretched his legs with a three-furlong breeze in 36 4/5 for trainer Donnie K. Von Hemel.

 

It was on Martin Luther King Jr. Day last year when Caleb’s Posse won the Smarty Jones Stakes, signaling his quality and starting a season that yielded Grade 1 wins in the King’s Bishop Stakes at Saratoga and the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile. Those wins have the son of Posse up for champion 3-year-old and champion sprinter at the Eclipse Awards Monday night.

 

Full fields, competitive season await Oaklawn fans opening day

Full fields, competitive season await Oaklawn fans opening day

FULL FIELDS, COMPETITIVE FIFTH SEASON AWAIT FANS OPENING DAY

HOT SPRINGS, AR (Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2011) – The excitement surrounding the start of Oaklawn’s 108th season will reach a fever pitch when the gates open Friday for the nine-race card, which features the $75,000 Fifth Season Stakes for 4-year-olds and older going 1 1/16 miles. Gates open at 11 am and first post is 1:00 p.m.

The Fifth Season drew a solid field of eight horses, the smallest on the card, and is headed by 2011 Razorback Handicap winner It Happened Again. The 9-5 morning line favorite enters the race off a resounding win in the Claiming Crown Jewel at Fair Grounds Dec. 3, his first start since June.