SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. — Sporting Chance won the $350,000 Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga, giving Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas a record eighth victory in the Grade 1 race two days after his 82nd birthday.
Lukas’ previous win in the race came four years ago for the same owners, Robert Baker and William Mack, when Strong Mandate won by 9 3/4 lengths. Sporting Chance’s margin of victory on Monday was a neck.
Lukas says he was more surprised by the win than the 2-year-old colt that was racing for just the third time. Lukas jokes that winning the Hopeful so many times “says you’re damn old.”
Sporting Chance paid $13.40 to win.
LONDON (AP) British horse racing is drawing inspiration from motor racing for a new championship.
Twelve branded teams will compete over eight consecutive Thursdays at different race courses across Britain when “The Series” is launched by Championship Horse Racing in 2019.
The aim is for each team to feature 30 horses and four jockeys. Each of the teams will enter one horse into each of the races to create 12-runner fields.
Organizers say a Formula One-style points system will be used to determine the winners of championships for teams and jockeys.
Championship Horse Racing CEO Jeremy Wray says it’s a chance to engage fans with “bite-size, interactive content.”
The Series has been developed with the Jockey Club, which hopes to attract a new audience to horse racing.
ARCADIA, Calif. — Long shot Kanthaka won the $200,000 San Vicente Stakes by 3 1/4 lengths on Saturday at Santa Anita, giving Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer a second Kentucky Derby prospect.
Ridden by Flavien Prat, Kanthaka ran seven furlongs in 1:22.62 and paid $24.20, $7.20 and $4.80 at 11-1 odds in the field of six 3-year-olds.
Hollendorfer also trains Derby contender Instilled Regard.
Trained by Bob Baffert, Nero returned $7.80 and $5.60 at 9-1 odds. All Out Blitz, another 9-1 shot that was another 12 lengths back in third, returned $5 to show.”
Ax Man, the 2-5 favorite also trained by Baffert, was under intense early pressure from his post along the rail and faltered badly in the stretch to finish fourth.
“I would completely throw this race out,” said Drayden Van Dyke, who rode Ax Man.
Kanthaka was next-to-last midway around the far turn before cutting inside All Out Blitz a quarter mile from the finish of the Grade 2 race.
“He gave me a great run and he did everything right,” Prat said. “He broke like a bullet but then we had quite a lot of speed in front of us. So he sat really nicely behind the speed and made a really nice run around the turn.”
The victory, worth $120,000, increased Kanthaka’s career earnings to $153,440, with two wins in three starts.