Arlington Million

Sudan Scratched From Saturday’s Arlington Million

Churchill Downs Communications | 08/08/2008 #

In Today’s Notes: 

·        Sudan Scratched From Saturday’s Arlington Million

·        Great Britain’s Eclipse Hero Mount Nelson Gallops Friday for Million

·        French Fillies for Saturday’s Beverly D. Stakes Canter

·        Winchester Jogs for Saturday’s Secretariat Stakes

Gary Tanaka’s Sudan, projected as the probable pace setter in Saturday’s Grade I Arlington Million, was withdrawn early Friday morning from the 25th renewal of the showcase race of the Chicago Thoroughbred racing season.

“He was fine when he galloped (at Arlington) yesterday,” Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel told Tanaka advisor Francois Dupuis by cell phone Friday morning as the horsewoman stood on the Arlington Park apron during training hours.  “But when we scanned him this morning we discovered that the horse had bowed a tendon.”

Ms. Dupuis is also serving as the translator for the French-speaking connections of Kamel Chehboub’s Spirit One, who was on the track for a canter at the time with exercise rider Emmanuel Diard aboard.

Sudan, an Irish-bred of Peintre Celebre, finished fourth in Belmont’s Grade I Man o’ War Stakes in his last start July 12, and captured the Grade III Golden Gate Fields Turf before that May 31.  The 5-year-old chestnut was in a position to give internationally prominent owner Tanaka his first win in the Arlington Million, and Frankel his third win to tie him with fellow Hall of Famers Charlie Whittingham and Ron McAnally for total Arlington Million victories.

Derrick Smith, Michael Tabor and Mrs. John Magnier’s Mount Nelson, the first winner of Great Britain’s Group I Coral-Eclipse Stakes to challenge in Chicago’s Grade I Arlington Million, got his first exercise over the local grounds about 8:30 a.m. Friday before a large group of international racing fans on hand for Friday’s “Breakfast at Arlington” program.

Minutes after Mount Nelson appeared on the track, IEAH Stable and Michael Tabor’s Plan, winner of Ireland’s Group III International Stakes July 12, also stepped on the Polytrack and galloped in advance of Saturday’s Grade I Secretariat Stakes.

Both Mount Nelson and Plan are conditioned by Ireland’s super star trainer Aidan O’Brien, who has already posted an unprecedented 17 Group I wins in Europe at this early juncture of the racing season.

Mount Nelson, who also scored a victory in France’s Group I Criterium International at Saint-Cloud two years ago, had exercise rider Pat Lillis aboard Friday, while Plan had exercise rider Stephen Hunter in the irons.

Others on the track for pre-Million jogs Friday morning included Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa al Maktoum and Dr. A. H. Parker’s Arlington Million favorite Archipenko; Midnight Cry Stable’s Einstein (with trainer Helen Pitts astride); and S J Stables’ Cloudy’s Knight.

The Rothschild Family’s Cicerole, and the Marquesa de Moratalla’s Toque de Queda, the two French-based European invaders for Saturday’s Grade I Beverly D. Stakes – sister race to Saturday’s Grade I Arlington Million – both galloped over Arlington’s Polytrack course Friday shortly before 9 a.m.

Cicerole, considered the stronger of the pair, has finished first or second in her last six races in a row and was most recently runner-up by a half-length in Great Britain’s Group III Queen Elizabeth Stakes June 7.

Others on the track Friday morning in advance of the Beverly D. included Frank Calabrese’s Dreaming of Anna (with trainer Wayne Catalano aboard); Robert Scarborough’s Mauralakana; Runnymede Farm’s Meribel (with trainer Helen Pitts up); and The Lavington Stud’s Rosinka.

Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Firestone’s Winchester, the Irish-based invader for Saturday’s Grade I Secretariat Stakes that is conditioned by Ireland’s all-time leading trainer Dermot Weld, jogged over Arlington’s Polytrack Friday morning with Weld assistant Jeff Byrne in the irons.

Also on the track jogging in advance of the Secretariat, final leg of Arlington’s Mid-America Triple, was the projected Secretariat favorite Tizdejavu.  The sophomore son of Tiznow, owned by Michael Cooper and Pamela Smith and trained by Greg Fox, won Arlington’s Grade II American Derby, middle leg of the Triple, in his last start July 12.

Other projected starters galloping Friday in preparation for the Secretariat included Sand and Cee Stable’s Secret Getaway and KatieRich Stables’ Your Round.