The Tournament Edge: Locally Linked Arlington Million Contenders

In my latest blog for The Tournament Edge, I take a look at a few possible Arlington Million contenders who have links to Arlington.

These include the defending champion, a last-out Grade I winner, as well as two Million Preview day winners.  One may be vulnerable and underlaid.  One looks, a week and a half out, like one of our best domestic hopes.  The other two, though…could they be live price horses?  It may be early, but it is not too early to start thinking.

Head over to The Tournament Edge, read my latest blog, and start getting ready for the 2016 Arlington Million!

Picks and Ponderings: Arlington Million Day Recap

Saturday was the biggest day of the Arlington summer meet: the Arlington International Festival of Racing.

It was a banner day for the locals, as Illinois-bred horses won two out of the six stakes on the day. The Pizza Man became the first Illinois-bred to win the historic Arlington Million (GI), and Recount extended his perfect record over the Arlington main track with a gritty victory in the Bruce D Memorial Stakes.  Furthermore, trainer Patti Miller annexed her first career graded stakes win when Mizz Money won the Pucker Up (GIII).

Over at Picks and Ponderings, we have a full look back on Million Day.  I recap the Secretariat (GI), the American St. Leger (GIII), and the Pucker Up (GIII); Paul Mazur looks at the Arlington Million (GI), the Beverly D (GI), and the Bruce D Memorial Stakes.  Head over there, and relive a great day of racing!

Arlington Million Day!

Arlington Million Day is here, and I have wall-to-wall information and analysis for the marquee day of the summer meet.

At ShapperDaCapper, I have detailed previews of both the Arlington Million (GI) and the Beverly D (GI).

Over at Picks and Ponderings, I have full previews of the Secretariat Stakes (GI), the American St. Leger (GIII), and the Pucker Up (GIII).

Finally, at Danonymous Racing, I have selections and analysis for the entire card.

Both Paul Mazur and I will be tweeting information and observations from @picksponderings throughout the day, and I will post pictures from my personal account (@rogueclown) as well.  If you have any questions or need specific live updates, Twitter is the best way to get in contact.

Chicago Railbird: Arlington Million Preview

The biggest race of the Arlington year is tomorrow: the Arlington Million.  It drew a full and competitive field of thirteen, with a mix of international shippers as well as familiar American horses.  It even drew a local in The Pizza Man, who will forgo a title defense in the American St. Leger in favour of this tougher, more lucrative spot.  With as tough as it drew this year, there is plenty of value to find.

Head on over to ShapperDaCapper, read the latest Chicago Railbird, and see who I like!

Million Week: Odds and Ends

Million Week began a few days ago, but past performances finally came out yesterday.  Things became that much more real, and that much more hectic.


Three of my previews of Arlington International Festival of Racing contests are online at Picks and Ponderings so far:

My previews of the Arlington Million and the Beverly D will be going live on ShapperDaCapper soon, and I will link to them here once they are around.

Paul Mazur and I have also been at morning workouts throughout the week; our dispatches from Wednesday and Thursday are at Picks and Ponderings, and jam-packed with pictures of stakes horses.

Of course, I saw a few more things throughout the days..

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Million Week Photos: Tuesday

This morning, the first groups of out-of-town stakes horses for the Arlington International Festival of Racing took to the track.


Over at Picks and Ponderings, Paul Mazur and I share a few pictures of the horses on both the main track and the training track, as well as a video of Euro Charline taking an easy little jog over the turf.

Of course, the stakes horses were not the only ones to work today.  I wished this grey from the Block barn could have galloped home with me, instead of back to the barn.


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Million Week Photos: Monday

Arlington Million week is officially underway, and I will be at the track every day this week.  Most of the stakes horses will not make their appearances until later in the week, but fellow Picks and Ponderings author Paul Mazur and I are going out every day.  Later in the week, more Million-related happenings are bound to transpire.

Today was all about getting the lay of the land, taking a few pictures, and just enjoying seeing the horses running.  We arrived just as it was no longer pitch dark, and were settled by the winners’ circle as the first few horses hit the track.

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the Million, minus California Chrome

With so many people yelling from soapboxes or raiding their sheds for pitchforks, I feel like I should have a stronger (or, at least, more interesting) opinion about California Chrome being declared out of the Million.

I have a straightforward opinion about the decision itself.  The bone bruise means they should stop pointing him toward the Arlington Million, and let him recover.

I’m disappointed.  I was looking forward to seeing California Chrome in person this week at Arlington, even though it would have required getting up in the middle of the night to catch the early train.   However, his health comes first, and his connections have done right to let him rest and heal.

California Chrome, Raul Rodriguez, and Anna Wells look out over Arlington Park on July 11. (Photo courtesy Four Footed Fotos.)
California Chrome, Raul Rodriguez, and Anna Wells look out over Arlington Park on July 11.
(Photo courtesy of Four Footed Fotos.)

Still, I am sad he will miss the Million for a much bigger reason than not getting pictures of his bright pink nose.

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Picks and Ponderings: Million Preview Day!

This Saturday is Million Preview Day: the four local preps for the Arlington International Festival of Racing.

Between me and Paul Mazur, we tackle all four of Saturday’s stakes races.  I take a detailed look at both the Arlington Handicap (GIII) and the Stars and Stripes Stakes (GIII)Paul Mazur turns his focus toward the Modesty Handicap (GIII) and the American Derby (GIII).  Together, these races form an all-graded-stakes late Pick 4 at Arlington Park.

Head on over to Picks and Ponderings, and start getting ready for Million Preview Day!