Sandy has come and gone, but in her path of destruction she has affected tens of millions of people. Some directly, and sadly enough, it may take those people a while to recover. Our thoughts are with everybody that has been impacted by this horrible storm.
With this massive storm approaching the Northeast, I'm asking all our players and friends who are unfortunately in this storm's path to please be safe. We all have seen the weather services predict big storms in the past that turn out to be nothing. And, just maybe, with some prayers and some luck, this storm will have only minor impacts.
Eleven sprinters are set for the $350,000 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash at Laurel Park on Saturday. Grade I winner Sean Avery, who was the favorite in his last race, the Vosburgh Invitational, came up empty, but hopes to bounce back here. He is a Grade 1 winner of the A.G.
Saturday's Grade 3, $150,000 Bold Ruler at Belmont Park features Caixa Electronica who finished a very strong second in the Grade 1 Vosburgh last time out. Little Drama finished just 2 lengths behind Caixa Electronica in that race but just couldn’t last, and he’ll have to step it up a notch.
Today we launched the chat program. The new chat program is very feature-rich, but we’re still experimenting with it and might make some modifications over the next week. There are certain pages where the chat feature is not available. That’s because we don’t want it interfering with the Unity player.
We have been working on new enhancements for the client for over 6 months. I had to bring on special developers to handle some of the changes and improvements we are making. I have talked about this before but for some players they either have forgotten or never read the post .
This past week we released the first phase of the Follow Horse Program. Just go to any player’s Stable Summary page and you can begin following their horses. You will receive alerts and messages when the horses you are following have been entered in a tournament that has just started.
We also adjusted the jockey and training instructions program with some additional functionality.
The Grade 2, $250,000 Raven Run at Keeneland features a full field of 14 and has no standout favorite. However, Gypsy Robin will get some respect having won the G2 Beaumont over the Keeneland polytrack earlier this spring. Via Villagio hasn't won since this spring, but she has been racing against some very tough competition and holding her own.
The $250,000 Empire Classic on Saturday at Belmont Park features a field of 9 led by Lunar Victory who had a five-race winning streak until he finished second in his last. In that race he beat out Fiddlers Afleet, also entered here, who has won two state-bred stakes this year as well.
We learn something new every day. Who would have ever thought that the player with the leading candidate for the Semi-Annual Rewards Top Birth Speed Rating, Dirty Merker, would enter that horse in an insta-tournament? I really don’t understand the logic, but what is done is done. We are going to modify the rules for situations like this after the horse completes this insta-tournament.
* The 2012 Breeders' Cup consists of champion horses - expect a better-than-last year result.
* Don't seem to have the exciting horse personalities this year as last., so may be disappointing.
* The Breeders' Cup is always full of excellent competition among quality contenders - this year good as last year.
* Who knows - surprises occur everywhere - why not the Breeders' Cup this year? May be the most exciting so far!
The $250,000 Cal Cup Juvenile drew a field of 10 colts going 1 1/16 miles. The Humancomplaint got second in his most recent start in the I'm Smokin in which he beat out Strong Wind who got third. Monument and Lovemeister finished second and third in a $50,000 stakes race at Fairplex last out.
The Grade 1, $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup over Keeneland's turf features eight 3 year old filles. Stephanie's Kitten will be among the favorites and is coming off a Grade 2 win in the Lake Placid over Centre Court and Somali Lemonade and has won four of her last six.
New General Trainer Tournaments that are now being published no longer have large gaps in between the individual races. All races for General Tournaments have a max 2-day separation and most of them are one day. Of course, the first race of the Tournament, along with the Breeders Cup Final, will continue with the current program.