Thursday, July 12, 2012
AMERICA'S BEST RACING Thoroughbred Notebook
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Scott Sherwood
This Week
From the Grandstand
In the News
In the Blogosphere
Weekend Stakes Races
Racing to History
A glorious morning at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, CA (Image via @MarkVerge’s Twitter feed)
The 2012 Travers Stakes poster from Saratoga Race Course (Image via the National Racing Museum and Hall of Fame’s Facebook page)
Jockey Frankie Dettori performs his signature flying dismount while carrying the Olympic torch to Ascot (Image via the @JaneChappleHyam Twitter feed)
Image courtesy of CJ LeBeau

Scott Sherwood is a proven entrepreneur who built, owned and operated a multi-million dollar retail sporting goods company for over 25 years. His love of Thoroughbred racing started as a young boy at the racetrack handicapping races and has evolved to owning his own racing stable. With Blinkers On, Scott combines his passion for racing with his acute business sense and strong customer service orientation. He is fully dedicated to the success of the partners in this venture and he puts his money where his mouth is by being personally invested in every Thoroughbred in the stable. Blinkers On Racing partnership recently sold multiple Grade I winner Turbulent Descent to Coolmore and she is now under the shedrow of trainer Todd Pletcher. In an interview with Thoroughbred Daily News, Sherwood recently explained the logic behind the sale: “Over the years we have had a number of offers and we’ve never taken one of them—the number just wasn’t right and we wanted to enjoy the ride.  And sort of out of the blue just last week an offer was presented that was a number that was impossible to refuse.” Blinkers On Racing Stable is based in California.


Name: Scott Sherwood

Birthplace: Spokane, WA.

Most influential person in my career: In my racing career it would be Greg Gilchrist.

My out-of-the-box idea for Thoroughbred Racing: Stop charging admission to the track. I understand it isn’t that simple but if we need to grow the spot, increase handle etc. we need people to come out and connect with the sport. They may even have a good time and come back.

My favorite racetrack: Del Mar

My fantasy job: My job as CEO at Blinkers On with a bigger bankroll.

What I like most about my job: Picking out the young talent at the sales and seeing it all come together on the racetrack.

Other sports/teams I follow: Golf, football, basketball, baseball

My Heroes: My wife and daughter.

What about myself would surprise those who know me: For those that know me, not much. I’m kind of an open book.

My favorite athlete of all-time: Turbulent Descent

Most treasured possession/memento: My dog.

A Pet Peeve: Bad customer service.

What book(s) I am reading or have recently read: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest

Favorite Magazines: The Blood-Horse

Favorite websites I visit daily/weekly: Thoroughbred Times, TVG (for obvious reasons)

Gadget I cannot live without: My iPhone.

Hobbies away from Thoroughbred Racing: Golf

Last concert I attended: Kenny Chesney

Favorite foods: Burritos

What I drive: An Audi A8 and a Dodge Ram truck.

If I could be a guest on any TV talk show it would be: Not The View.

If I could appear on any television show it would be: Saturday Night Live

If I could be a guest on any talk radio show it would be: Jim Rome’s

If I could be on stage I would play what instrument: The tambourine because I have zero talent.

Favorite Musician/Band: Kenny Chesney

Favorite Actor: Vince Vaughn

Newspaper I read daily: The Daily Racing Form

I’d like to have dinner with: Warren Buffett (he might want to get in the horse business)

Best racetrack food can be found at: Not at a racetrack.

Accomplishment I am most proud of: Building a chain of retail golf and tennis stores.

My philosophy on life: Work hard play hard.

Favorite quote or motto: Fast pay makes fast friends.

Things I collect: Win photos.

Celebrity/prominent personality friends include: Kristian Ipsen

Favorite authors: Robert Parker

Favorite animal other than a horse: Dog

What actor would play me in a movie: Al Pachino

Favorite non-Thoroughbred racing sports event I have attended: A Heavy Weight title bout.

What historical figure do you most identify with: Christopher Columbus

What living person do you most admire: My daughter.

Twitter Handle: @Gate_To_Wire

No. 1 Bucket List Item: Win the Derby.


Hall of Fame trainer H. Allen Jerkens reporting that he and Emma’s Encore were in fine fettle following her 38-1 win in the Grade 3 Victory Ride Stakes at Belmont Park:
“They always seem to be proud in the morning after they’ve won,” said Jerkens. “It’s your own reading into it, probably. Most likely they do the same thing when they lose. Every once in a while they jump around in the pen even when they finish dead last.”

Miami Heat forward Shane Battier, quoted in Sports Illustrated in response to a question from Dan Patrick on what he’d do if he were LeBron James for day:
 “I’d dunk, lift weights, run fast.  I’d challenge a horse to a race.”

Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith talking about his best athletic moment in ESPN Magazine:
“Two that stand out are the Kentucky Derby in 2005 with Giacomo and the $15 million Breeders' Cup Classic in 2009 with Zenyatta. With Giacomo, there were 20 horses in the race, and we came from 18th place, got into perfect rhythm and maintained it. I used all my strength to push, stay balanced, stay in rhythm -- especially that last quarter-mile. To stay in perfect balance and rhythm is extremely important, and I knew after that race that all my weight training really helped. It's about going with the horse on every stride, being able to keep your body still and push as hard as you can, not leaving your legs waddling, just locking yourself down and staying in perfect rhythm. When you can sit so locked it helps the horse maintain their stride.”


Video: Jockey Tim Thorton takes us behind the scenes at Arlington Park to exercise horses in the morning. (Behind the Silks)

Video: New York’s Bryant Park carousel becomes the scene of an improve group’s impromptu horse racing (ImprovEverywhere’s YouTube channel)

Photos: Looking back at I’ll Have Another’s retirement parade at Hollywood Park (Casey Phillips Facebook album)

Photos: Looking back at historical photos of Saratoga Race Course (Albany Times-Union)


Looking for summer fun? Monmouth Park has something for everyone (America’ Best Racing)

Del Mar is open for the track’s early arrivals (UT San Diego)

Del Mar Limiting field sizes for two-year-old races (Thoroughbred Times)

Saratoga, New York’s Summer Season Sizzles with Horse Racing, Performances, Getaway Packages, Festivals and More (Digital Journal)

Underdog days of summer (ESPN)

Local horse pointed to Haskell (Sacramento Bee)

Haskell to highlight busy July at Monmouth Park (The

Royal Delta works toward Delaware Handicap, July 21 (Daily Racing Form)

Thoroughbred season closes at Lone Star Park (Star Telegram)

Cal Expo meet at Sacramento opening with larger horse population (Daily Racing Form)

Trainer Mike Mitchell visits stable at Hollywood Park after surgery (

Jockey Leandro Goncalves an ironman in the irons (Louisville Courier-Journal)

Australian racing sensation Black Caviar has fallen for an Italian stallion – literally (Racing Post)

The Grayson-Jockey Club has a Q&A with top Thoroughbred owner Cot Campbell (Grayson-Jockey Club)

Sutherland makes Hollywood Gold Cup history (Fox Sports)

Game On Dude assumes the lead in NTRA Poll (Sacramento Bee)

Trainer Bob Baffert: The silver-haired dude with a golden touch (LA Times)

I’ll Have Another says farewell at Hollywood Park; Mucho Macho Man wins Suburban (The Saratogian)

I’ll Have Another is sold for $10 million (The Blood Horse)

Horse racing’s Doug O’Neill drops challenge to suspension (LA Times)

I’ll Have Another had history of lameness before being retired (New York Times)

Racetrack veterinarians react to New York Times piece, call I’ll Have Another’s treatment “routine care” (The Blood-Horse)

Trainer Doug O’Neill responds to New York Times piece, calls allegations “irresponsible and fictitious” (Thoroughbred Times)

Racetrack veterinarian responds to New York Times allegations that O’Neill used “powerful painkillers” on I’ll Have Another (Paulick Report)

Kentucky billionaire B. Wayne Hughes says income debate makes him ‘an enemy of the state’ (Courier-Journal)

Should the U.S. horse-racing industry follow Turkey’s example? (Washington Post)

Jockey Mike Smith’s photo and interview in ESPN Magazine’s Body Issue (ESPN)

John Lopez to replace Gary Brinson as Del Mar starter (UT San

Racing Official Michael G. Mackey dies (The Blood-Horse)

Memorial horse race held to honor jockey who died in racing accident (

Union Rags out for the year due to tendon injury (The Blood-Horse)

Horse of the Year Holy Bull pensioned from stud duty (Thoroughbred Times)

NHC Tour bonuses fulfill goal: get players to play (Daily Racing Form)

Museum of Racing adds new interactive feature in Steeplechase Gallery
(The Blood-Horse)

OTTB Showcase: Desert Bloomer (A.K.A. “Bloomer”) (Paulick Report)

A first for horses and fans alike this weekend at Pimlico (WBAL)


Genius reimagining of Carly Rae Jepson’s “Call me Maybe” from a racetracker’s point of view (Giving My Ten Cents)

Understanding Trakus data on ground-saving rides at Del Mar (America’s Best Racing)

The NTRA Poll: On getting it right (

Suburban: 'Mucho' reasons to feel good (ESPN)

Changing racing for the better (Blood-Horse)

Charting the 2012 Horse of the Year race (Horse Racing Nation)

Second half of season starts off with 3 Grade I’s (Daily Racing Form)

The older males of 2012 are terrific (Horse Racing Nation)

Guest Blog: Owner Paul Reddam on the sale of I’ll Have Another (The Blood-Horse)

Strike Impact travelblog returns: The bumpy trip to Mountaineer (Courier-Journal)

Four-year-old runner Redeemed could do more by doing less (Horse Racing Nation)

Two-Year Olds to watch (In the Money)

Taking a look at top second crop sire Scat Daddy (All Equine All the Time)


Qualifiers to the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship, presented by Sovereign Stable and Treasure Island Las Vegas, are taking place online and across the country as the summer tournament season kicks into high gear.

Start making your reservations for the Surfside Race Place July 13-15 event.  The Friday mini tournament is limited to the first 50 registrants.  The contest entry fee is $300 plus a mandatory, live money $2 win/place wager per race ($32 total).  Two NHC berths are guaranteed and if the contest draws the full limit of 50 entries, then three NHC berths will be awarded. The Saturday-Sunday event entry fee is $200.  Each contestant will make 16 mythical, $20 win and place wagers on eight races that you select from the last six races at Hollywood Park and Belmont Park.  A maximum of four NHC berths will be awarded. Click here for more information.

Hawthorne Race Course is hosting a July 14 live money event awarding two NHC berths and an estimated cash prize of $30,000. Click here for more details.

Click here to view the current Daily Racing Form NHC Tour schedule.

Click here  to view the current list of NHC 14 qualifiers. 



The July 31 conclusion of the first-half of the Daily Racing Form NHC Tour is right around the corner. The top 10 finishers on the first-half Leader Board will receive cash prizes totaling $50,000.  The winner of the first-half of the Tour season will be pocketing $15,000. 
There has been little movement of late in the Leader Board standings.  Mark McGuire (Newbury Park, CA) is still in the number one position on both the full and first-half Leader Boards. 

Click here to view the overall full Leader Board standings. 

Click here to view the first-half full Leader Board standings.

The top 100 on the overall year-end Leader Board will be guaranteed entry in the 2013 NHC. Click here to view the top 100 standings.


July 12, 1971: Bold Ruler, sire of 82 stakes winners, including Secretariat, died at Claiborne Farm.

July 13, 1986: Jockey Kent Desormeaux rode his first winner, a three-year-old filly named Miss Tavern, in the fifth race at Evangeline Downs.

July 13, 1996: Cigar tied Citation’s record of 16 consecutive victories, winning the Citation Challenge at Arlington International Racecourse.

July 13, 2006: The condition of injured Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro took a turn for the worse when it was discovered that the colt has developed acute laminitis in his left hind foot.

July 13, 2007: Funny Cide, winner of the 2003 Kentucky Derby, was retired. The popular New York-bred gelding then began a second career as a stable pony.

July 14, 1951: In his last race, Calumet Farm’s six-year-old Citation won the Hollywood Gold Cup by four lengths, and became racing’s first millionaire horse.

July 14, 1999: Television Games Network (TVG) made its official debut with horse racing programming available to 1.1 million C-band satellite homes though Superstar/Netlink Group, the nation’s largest satellite programming provider.

July 15, 1966: Dr. Fager won his first race by seven lengths at Aqueduct racetrack. He was sent off at odds of 10-1.

July 15, 1972: After finishing fourth in his racing debut on July 4, Secretariat won his first race, under jockey Paul Feliciano. The six-length victory occurred at Aqueduct.

July 15, 1987: Jack Van Berg became the first trainer to win 5,000 races when he sent Art’s Chandelle, a $10,000 claimer, to victory at Arlington Park.

July 15, 1999: The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) confirmed that it had completed its purchase of the horseracing assets of Winner Communications via its newly formed subsidiary, NTRA Investments LLC.

July 15, 2000: Three-year-old filly Hallowed Dreams kept her record perfect and tied Cigar's and Citation’s mark of 16 consecutive wins by taking the Dixie Miss Stakes at Louisiana Downs.

July 16, 1998: Breeders’ Cup Limited announced that a new $1 million turf race for fillies and mares would be added to Breeders’ Cup Championship Day beginning in 1999. The race would be called the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf and would be run at 1 ¼ miles.

July 17, 1975: Jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. notched his 3,000th career victory, aboard Lexington Lark at Hollywood Park.

July 17, 1994: Former jockey Angel Cordero Jr. had his first stakes victory as a trainer when he sent Holy Mountain to win the Lexington Stakes at Belmont Park. Cordero was officiating on behalf of Holy Mountain’s regular trainer, Bob Klesaris, who was serving a suspension.

July 17, 2011: Trainer Linda Rice became the fifth woman to win 1,000 races when she saddled Sextant to win the ninth race at Belmont Park.

July 18, 1942: Garden State Park officially opened. A crowd of 31,682 welcomed the return of racing to New Jersey after a 49-year absence.

July 18, 1989: The last Northern Dancer foal to be sold at public auction, later named Northern Park, was purchased by Zenya Yoshida for $2.8 million. In 30 starts over four years in France, Northern Park compiled a 4-7-4 record.

July 18, 1993: Jockey Gary Stevens topped $100 million in purse earnings after winning the seventh race at Hollywood Park aboard Don’t Presume (GB).

July 18, 2007: Del Mar unveils its new Polytrack racing surface before a record opening day crowd of 42,842.

July 18, 2008: Pinnacle Race Course opened for its first season of racing in Huron Township, Michigan.

July 19, 2000: Allen Paulson, owner and breeder of Cigar, died in La Jolla, Calif. after a long battle with cancer. He was 78.

July 20, 1951: Six-year-old Citation, the first Thoroughbred to earn $1 million, was retired.

July 20, 1974: Carl Rosen’s Chris Evert trounced Miss Musket by 50 lengths in the world’s richest match race, a $350,000 winner-take-all contest at Hollywood Park.

July 20, 1988: John Galbreath, founder of Darby Dan Farm, died at age 90. He was the first person to have owned and bred winners of the Kentucky Derby (Chateaugay and Proud Clarion) and the Epsom Derby (Roberto).

July 20, 2009: Jockey Rosemary Homeister Jr. became Thoroughbred racing’s second winningest female jockey when she rode Gambles List to victory in the third race at Colonial Downs. The win was the 2,138th of Homeister’s career. Julie Krone holds the all-time record for wins by a female rider with 3,704.

July 21, 1989: Jockey Chris McCarron notched his 5,000th winner, riding I Sure Hope So to victory in the fifth race at Hollywood Park.

July 21, 2010: Opening day at Del Mar attracted 45,309 spectators, the largest crowd in Del Mar history.

July 22, 1999: Dale Baird, the winningest trainer in history, recorded his 8,000th victory at Mountaineer Race Track in Chester, W.V., sending out Midsummer Scene to take the 6th race.

July 23, 1947: Early Edition, Hunter’s Sun and Brown Jewel, all offspring of the sire Hunter’s Moon IV, finished 1-2-3, respectively, in a race at Hollywood Park

July 23, 1985: A bay colt, Seattle Dancer, son of Nijinsky II and the mare My Charmer, sold to Robert Sangster for $13.1 million—the record price for a Thoroughbred. Seattle Dancer, a half brother to 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew, raced five times as a three-year-old to earn less than $150,000 from two wins, one second and one third before he was retired. The previous record for a horse sold at auction was $10.2 million, paid by Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum in 1983 for Snaafi Dancer, who never raced.

July 25, 2003: “Seabiscuit”, starring Tobey Maguire, Chris Cooper, Jeff Bridges and jockey Gary Stevens opened in movie theatres nationwide. The film would go on to earn over $120 million at the box office and $80 million in DVD sales. 


Man o’ War Stakes, 3&up, $600,000, Grade I, 1 3-8M (T), Belmont Park

Delaware Oaks, 3yo fillies, $400,000, Grade II, 1 1-16M (T), Delaware Park

American Oaks, 3yo fillies, $350,000, Grade I, 1 1-4M (T), Betfair Hollywood Park

A Gleam Handicap, 3&up (f&m), $200,000, Grade II, 7F, Betfair Hollywood Park

American Derby, 3yo, $200,000, Grade III, 1 3-16M (T), Arlington Park

Arlington Handicap, 3&up, $200,000, Grade III, 1 1-4M (T), Arlington Park

Greenwood Cup, 3&up, $200,000, Grade III, 1 1-2M, Parx Racing

Modesty Handicap, 3&up (f&m), $200,000, Grade III, 1 3-16M (T), Arlington Park

Robert G. Dick Memorial Stakes, 3&up (f&m), $200,000, Grade III, 1 3-8M (T), Delaware Park

Hollywood Juvenile Championship Stakes, 2yo, $150,000, Grade III, 6F, Betfair Hollywood Park

Stars and Stripes Stakes, 3&up, $150,000, Grade III, 1 1-2M (T), Arlington Park

Colin Stakes, 2yo, $100,000, 6F, Woodbine

Landaluce Stakes, 2yo fillies, $150,000, 6F, Betfair Hollywood Park

Toronto Cup Stakes, 3yo, $150,000, 1 1-8M (T), Woodbine

Jersey Shore, 3yo, $100,000, Grade III, 6F, Monmouth Park

Nancy’s Glitter Handicap, 3&up (f&m), $75,000, 1M, Calder

Sunset Handicap, 3&up, $100,000, Grade III, 1 1-2M (T), Betfair Hollywood Park

Serena’s Song Stakes, 3yo fillies, $75,000, 1M 70 yds., Monmouth Park

Bold Venture Stakes, 3&up, $150,000, Grade III, 6 1-2F, Woodbine