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Bacharach, Costello team up on musical benefit for horses

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SOLANA BEACH, Calif. (AP) Burt Bacharach and Elvis Costello are teaming up for a musical benefit for victims of the San Luis Rey Downs training track fire this month that killed nearly 50 horses and injured their caretakers.

The event on Jan. 17 at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, a mile from Del Mar racetrack, will be hosted by actress Bo Derek, a former member of the California Horse Racing Board. She and Oscar-winning actress Anjelica Huston will preside over an auction before the show.

Bacharach and Costello teamed on the Grammy-winning album “Painted From Memory” in 1998.

“Horses and horse racing have given me nothing but pleasure for the last half-century,” Bacharach said. “The horrible circumstances around the San Luis Rey Downs fire cry out for aid in so many ways. This is my way of giving back to the horse community.”

Tickets range from $250 to $1,000, which includes an after-show reception with Bacharach, a horse owner and racing fan of 50 years. Sales began Wednesday.

All money raised will be equally split between the California Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Foundation and the California Retirement Management Account. The money will go toward caring for horses, trainers, grooms and stable workers who were displaced by the fire at the training track in Bonsall on Dec. 7.

Gronkowski preparing for U.S. debut in Belmont Stakes

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NEW YORK — Gronkowski has completed his first official workout since arriving in the United States ahead of his expected start in the Belmont Stakes.

The colt breezed four furlongs in 47.99 seconds at Belmont Park on Saturday for Chad Brown, who has taken over training duties from Europe-based Jeremy Noseda.

Gronkowski has been in the U.S. a couple of weeks. The colt, named for New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, has four wins in six starts in Britain. The human Gronkowski has purchased an interest in the colt that missed the Kentucky Derby because of a slight infection.

Gronkowski is being pointed toward the June 9 Belmont, where Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Justify will try to become horse racing’s 13th Triple Crown winner.

Brown says the colt came to him in outstanding condition and shows the signs of being a very good racehorse.

Audible won’t race in Belmont Stakes

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NEW YORK — Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Justify won’t have to further contend with Audible in pursuit of the colt’s bid for the Triple Crown.

Trainer Todd Pletcher said Friday that Audible will be pointed toward a summer campaign, with the $600,000 Jim Dandy at Saratoga on July 28 or the $1 million Haskel Invitational on July 29 being the top options for his next start.

Florida. Derby winner Audible finished third in the Kentucky Derby. Both Justify and Audible are co-owned by WinStar Farm and there had been much speculation whether the owners would pit them against each other when Justify tries to complete a Triple Crown sweep in the Belmont on June 9.

Elliott Walden, WinStar president and CEO, was at Belmont Park on Friday to see Audible and discussed the situation with Pletcher.

The trainer says Audible isn’t doing as well as he was leading into the May 5 Derby and he doesn’t think the colt is where he needs to be to win the 1 +-mile Belmont.

However, Noble Indy is a possibility to run in the Belmont. He finished 17th in the Kentucky Derby and is also co-owned by WinStar. Pletcher said Noble Indy put himself into the Belmont mix after completing a half-mile workout Friday.