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Belmont Fall Championship 2012: Stars come out for Super Saturday

Royal Delta, It's Tricky, Ron the Greek, Shackleford lead a parade of stars on Super Saturday at the Belmont Fall Championship meet.

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12 Total Updates since September 29, 2012
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Point Of Entry Defeats Treasure Beach (Video)

It's rare in modern American racing to find a horse that excels on the grass at the distance of a mile and a half. Give the sprint/mile/dirt focus of the large majority of racing in the country, fewer and fewer horses are bred to be top-class runners at the classic turf distance of 12 furlongs. In that respect, Point of Entry (winner of Saturday's Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at Belmont Park) is a bit of a throwback runner.

Sent off as the 3/5 favorite, Point of Entry and jockey John Velazquez were content to sit just off the early speed of Arlington Million winner Little Mile through the first half mile. Irish raider Treasure Beach (GB) and Jaime Spencer decided to take matters into their own hands as the field exited the back stretch, moving up to challenge the lead and putting pressure on Point of Entry to keep up or be left behind. The challenge extended by Treasure Beach only prolonged the inevitable; Point of Entry drew even with Treasure Beach after coming off the far turn and put away his rival inside the final furlong.

Result Chart


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The Lumber Guys Cuirises In The Vosburgh (Video)

The Lumber Guy accomplished a lot of "firsts" in Saturday's Vosburgh at Belmont Park. He won the first Grade 1 stakes race of his career. He beat older horses for the first time (after running against three-year-old colts all year long). And he qualified for his first Breeders' Cup and will contest the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Santa Anita Park on November 3rd.

The Vosburgh couldn't have set up any better for The Lumber Guy; Poseidon's Warrior and Little Drama set fast splits through the opening half mile (22.57 and 45.06), with The Lumber Guy sitting in fourth in a perfect tracking position. The winner swept to the lead coming off the far turn and had plenty of gas in the tank to hold off Caixa Electronica at the wire. Caixa Electronica, a hard-knocking seven-year-old horse with 18 victories in his career, closed furiously from the pack of the pack to finish second after racing dead last through a quarter of a mile.

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Nahrain Wins The Flower Bowl (Video)

Saturday's Grade 1 Flower Bowl was a showcase for the strength and depth of the European-bred turf horses as Nahrain (GB), Zagora (FR), Dream Peace (IRE) and I'm A Dreamer (IRE) all fought tooth-and-nail in the final quarter mile. Ultimately, Nahrain prevailed by a half-length over Zagora at the wire, providing her with a spot in the 2012 Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.

The pace of the Flower Bowl, occurring over a Belmont turf course listed at "Yielding", was quite soft in the early stages with Hit It Rich carving out early fractions of 25.33, 51.73 and a pedestrian 1:17.43 for the three-quarter mark. The early leaders all three in the towel at the top of the stretch paving the way for a mad dash to the finish line.

A year ago in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf, Nahrain couldn't hold on to a slim lead in deep stretch and lost by three-quarters of a length to Perfect Shirl. Is was s bitter defeat, one that Nahrain's connections are attempting to avenge in 2012. After a slow start to the season, Nahrain is rounding into form and, if her victory in Saturday's Flower Bowl is any indication, she will again be one of the top contenders for the Filly & Mare Turf at this year's Breeders' Cup.

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Flat Out Wins Jockey Club Gold Cup (Video)

It's been a long time since Flat Out last found himself in the Winner's Circle following the conclusion of a race. In fact, it was almost exactly one year ago that Flat Out beat Drosselmeyer and Stay Thirsty to win the 2011 Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park. On Saturday, Flat Out successfully defended his Gold Cup title with a gutsy effort to beat Stay Thirsty by a head in the final strides.

Flat Out broke a little slowly from the gate and was content to sit near the back of the pack in the early stages of the race. Stay Thirsty set solid fractions on the front end and turned back the challenges of Ruler On Ice, San Pablo and Fort Larned as he rounded the far turn. Flat Out began to make his move after racing wide of the far turn, grinding down Stay Thirsty through the final quarter mile. Just when it looked as if Stay Thirsty would hold on for the victory, Flat Out found one final surge to push him past his rival.

With his victory in the Jockey Club Gold Cup, Flat Out is guaranteed a spot in the starting gate for the 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic at Santa Anita on November 3rd. Flat Out went to post as the 7/2 favorite in last year's Classic but finished a disappointing fifth, three lengths behind Drosselmeyer.

Flat Out now sports a lifetime record of 19-6-4-2 and has won over $2 million in purse money.

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Royal Delta Dominates The Beldame (Video)

To write that Royal Delta won the Grade 1 Beldame "easily" would be an understatement. To write that she "dominated" would also be an understatement. Simply put, Royal Delta was picture perfect at Belmont Park on Saturday afternoon.

Facing a rival that would likely have a tactical speed advantage over her (It's Tricky), Royal Delta broke well and sat right off of the leader's hip through the opening half mile. Once the two fillies were midway on the far turn, Royal Delta rolled up alongside her rival and found little resistance. From there, all jockey John Velazquez had to do was hold on and point Royal Delta towards the finish line. The final margin (nine and a half lengths) was minimized due to Johnny V. gearing down Royal Delta in the final strides.

Royal Delta won the 2011 Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic and, after her brilliant performance in the Beldame, she'll likely be one of the top contenders at this year's race. However, the Ladies' Classic won't be a walk in the park for Royal Delta. Questing (GB), My Miss Aurelia and Awesome Feather are three of the best fillies in the country and are all likely starters in this year's Ladies' Classic. Both My Miss Aurelia and Awesome Feather are undefeated in their career and are in excellent form as they train towards towards the Breeders' Cup.

Below is the video replay of Royal Delta's victory in the Grade 1 Beldame.


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Flat Out Punches Ticket To The Breeders' Cup

Flat Out made a late surge at the wire to beat pace setting Stay Thirsty by a head and win the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup for the second consecutive year. Stay Thirsty finished second while the post time favorite, Fort Larned, faded to third. Long shot Atigun rounded out the superfecta.

Running over a dirt track rated as "good" following heavy rains overnight in New York, Stay Thirsty, Ruler on Ice and San Pablo set a solid early pace. Morning line favorite Ron the Greek was well back, almost 15 lengths behind in the early stages, while post time favorite Fort Larned raced in middle of the pack through the first mile. Fort Larned then made a move coming off the far turn but could find no more when challenged by Flat Out at the top of the stretch. Stay Thirsty, fighting on gamely in deep stretch, only surrendered the lead in the final stride.

Flat Out is a six-year-old son of Flatter out of a Cresta Rider mare (Cresta Lil), trained by Bill Mott, ridden by Joel Rosario and owned by Preston Stables.

Below are the payouts, fractions and internal splits for the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup.

WIN: 9-Flat Out ($9.30, $5.60, $4.00)
PLACE: 2-Stay Thirsty ($10.80, $6.70)
SHOW: 5-Fort Larned ($4.00)

$1.00 EXACTA: (9/2) $54.75
$1.00 TRIFECTA: (9/2/5) $242.75
$0.10 SUPERFECTA: (9/2/5/6) $213.85
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: (2/9) $8.70
$1.00 PICK 3: (8/2/9) $45.59
$0.50 PICK 4: (1,7/8/2/9) $88.00

Fractions:
1/4: 23.49
1/2: 47.21
3/4: 1:11.96
Mile: 1:36.41
Finish: 2:01.44

Internal Splits:
1/4: 23.49
1/2: 23.72
3/4: 24.75
Mile: 24.45
Finish: 25.03

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Hirsch Turf Result: Pont Of Entry Much The Best

Point of Entry powered past Treasure Beach (GB) inside the final quarter mile to win the Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at Belmont Park, his fifth consecutive win and third straight Grade 1 win. Treasure Beach finished second, while long shot Kindergarden Kid rounded out the trifecta.

Little Mike set a soft pace right from the outset, clicking off an opening quarter in 25.70 seconds and a half-mile in 51.99. Treasure Beach and Point of Entry sat second and third, in no hurry to put pressure on Little Mike. Point of Entry and Treasure Beach decided to go to the front heading into the far turn, with Treasure Beach gaining a narrow advantage until John Velazquez took Point of Entry wide off the turn. One he he was asked for more run at the top of the stretch, Point of Entry surged to the front to capture the victory.

With his win in the Hirsch Turf, Point of Entry has secured a spot in the 2012 Breeders' Cup Turf at Santa Anita on November 3rd.

Point of Entry is a four-year-old son of notable turf sire Dynaformer out of a Seeking the Gold mare (Matlacha Pass), trained by Shug McGaughey and ridden by John Velazquez. He is a Phipps Stable home-bred.

Below are the payouts, fractions and internal splits for the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic.

WIN: 2-Point of Entry ($3.50, $2.50, $2.10)
PLACE: 3-Treasure Beach (GB) ($4.30, $2.90)
SHOW: 5-Kindergarden Kid ($5.10)

$1.00 EXACTA: (2/3) $5.90
$1.00 TRIFECTA: (2/3/5) $30.75
$0.10 SUPERFECTA: (2/3/5/6) $9.42
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: (8/2) $12.50
$1.00 PICK 3: (1/8/2) $35.50

Fractions:
1/4: 25.70
1/2: 51.99
3/4: 1:18.16
Mile: 1:43.67
1 1/4: 2:08.29
Finish: 2:33.73

Internal Splits:
1/4: 25.70
1/2: 26.29
3/4: 26.17
Mile: 25.51
1 1/4: 24.62
Finish: 25.44

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Nahrain Nips Zagora At The Wire

It was a European free-for-all in the closing stages of the Flower Bowl as a four-horse battle for the finish line saw Nahrain (GB) and John Velazquez squeeze in-between rival horses to beat Zagora (FR) by a half-length at the wire. Dream Peace (IRE) and I'm A Dreamer (IRE) were in the mix with the top two inside the final quarter mile. After a stewards inquiry (due to some bumping and grinding in the stretch drive) the final order of finish was confirmed as Nahrain, Zagora, Dream Peace and I'm A Dreamer - a top four of European-bred horses.

As is typical in may turf races at a mile and a quarter or longer, the pace was quite soft with an opening quarter and half-mile in 25.33 and 51.73. Nahrain sat in the middle of the pack for most of the early stages of the race, angled out three or four wide when coming off the far turn, produced a good turn of foot inside the final furlong and split horses to get the victory.

With her win in the Flower Bowl, Nahrain has secured a spot in the starting gate for the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.

Nahrain is a four-year-old filly by Selkirk out of a Generous (IRE) mare (Bahr (GB)), trained by Roger Varian and ridden by John Velazquez.

Below are the payouts, fractions and internal splits for the Flower Bowl.

WIN: 8-Nahrain (GB) ($12.00, $7.90, $4.30)
PLACE: 7-Zagora (FR) ($4.20, $3.10)
SHOW: 1-Dream Peace (IRE) ($2.80)

$1.00 EXACTA: (8/7) $31.50
$1.00 TRIFECTA: (8/7/1) $77.75
$0.10 SUPERFECTA: $17.85
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: (1/8) $22.30
$1.00 PICK 3: (3/7/8) $46.75, 3-of-3
$1.00 PICK 3: (3/1/8) $191.75, 3-of-3

Fractions:
1/4: 25.33
1/2: 51.73
3/4: 1:17.43
Mile: 1:41.69
Finish: 2:05.56

Internal Splits:
1/4: 25.33
1/2: 26.40
3/4: 25.70
Mile: 24.26
Finish: 23.87

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Vosburgh Results: The Lumber Guys Wins With Style

The Lumber Guy broke well from the gate and sat right off of the early duel between Little Drama and Poseidon's Warrior and then rolled past the leaders in mid-stretch to win the Grade 1 Vosbugh at Belmont Park. Caixa Electronica made a huge run from the back of the field to finish second but never serious threatened the winner in the final strides. Early leader Poseidon's Warrior held on to finish third.

The Lumber Guy (and his co-entry, Sean Avery), were sent to post as the 2/1 betting favorites in the race.

Prior to the race, long shot Royal Currier reared up in the gate, unseating the jockey, and had to be scratched from the race. He appeared to not suffer any significant injuries.

The Vosburgh is a "Win and You're In" race for the 2012 Breeders' Cup Sprint. With his victory at Belmont, The Lumber Guy is now quarateed a spot in the starting gate at Santa Anita on November 3rd.

The Lumber Guy is a three-year-old son of Grand Slam out of an Unbridled's Song mare (Boltono), trained by Michael Hushion, ridden by Johnny Velazquez and owned by Barry Schwartz.

Below are the payouts, fractions and internal splits for the Grade 1 Vosburgh.

WIN: 1a-The Lumber Guy ($6.20, $3.70, $2.90)
PLACE: 8-Caixa Electronica ($7.80, $5.10)
SHOW: 2-Poseidon's Warrior ($5.40)

$1.00 EXACTA: (1/8) $25.50
$1.00 TRIFECTA: (1/8/2) $137.00
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: (3/7) $6.80
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: (3/1) $37.75
$1.00 PICK 3: (3/3/7) $18.00, 3-of-3
$1.00 PICK 3: (3/3/1) $74.00, 3-of-3

Fractions:
1/4: 22.57
1/2: 45.06
5/8: 56.91
Finish: 1:09.22

Internal Splits:
1/4: 22.57
1/2: 22.49
5/8: 11.85
Finish: 12.31

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Royal Delta Dominates The Beldame

Royal Delta bounced back from a disappointing effort in the G1-Personal Ensign in her last start to completely dominate the Grade 1 Beldame, winning by almost 10 lengths over It's Tricky at the wire. It's Tricky broke cleanly from the gate and went right to the lead and set quick fractions through the first half mile (24.09 and 46.70). At mid-way on the far turn, Royal Delta drew along side her rival under mild encouragement from jockey Mike Smith and then proceeded to run away from the rest of the field in the final quarter mile. It's Tricky couldn't keep up and had to settle for second. Long shot Go Unbirdled closed from the back of the pack to finish third.

A pair of early scratches (Disposablepleasure and Acting Happy) reduced the Beldame field to just five fillies and mares. It's Tricky and Royal Delta took the majority of the action from the players, going to post at odds of 6/5 and 4/5, respectively.

As part of the Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win and You're In" series, Royal Delta is guaranteed a spot in the starting gate for the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Challenge on November 2nd.

Royal Delta is a four-year-old daughter of Empire Maker out of an A.P. Indy mare (Delta Princess), trained by Bill Mott and ridden by Mike Smith.

Below are the payouts for the 2012 Grade 1 Beldame.

WIN: 3-Royal Delta ($3.70, $2.20, $2.10)
PLACE: 6-It's Tricky ($2.30, $2.10)
SHOW: 1-Go Unbridled ($2.90)

$1.00 EXACTA: $2.55
$1.00 TRIFECTA: $7.50
$0.10 SUPERFECTA: None
$1.00 DAILY DOUBLE: $4.05
$1.00 PICK 3: $637.50
$1.00 PICK 4: $1,587.75

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