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Pa-bred Unique Bella wore down Paradise Woods to win the G1 La Brea Stakes

Back at Santa Anita, with footing more to her liking than that of Del Mar, Pa-bred Unique Bella had her first G1 Stakes victory  in the $300,000 La Brea on Dec. 26, wearing down two time G1 Stakes winner Paradise Woods to win by three-quarters of a length.

UniqueBella BCpost.PMUnique Bella at the Breeders' CupParadise Woods is by Union Rags, who was bred and campaigned by Phyllis Wyeth of Chadds Ford, Pa., and she is now Union Rags' top earning get.

Unique Bella, by Tapit, who has now won five graded stakes, finished seventh as the favorite in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Del Mar on a race track that saw many favorites beaten by the going.

Trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and ridden by Mike Smith, Unique Bella ran a different race in the La Brea than she ran in the Breeders' Cup, where she was on the lead.

In the La Brea, Smith held her back early in the seven furlong race and went outside a four way contest for the lead in the backstretch.

Unique Bella was a length behind Paradise Woods entering the stretch but gained on her rival steadily through the stretch to eventually prevail.

She was bred in Pennsylvania by Betty Moran's Brushwood Stable and is out of the G1 winning Unbridled Bella by Unbridled Song.

She was sold at the 2015 Keeneland September Yearling Sale for $400,000 to Don Alberto.

Unique Bella now has six wins from eight starts and $592,400 in earnings.


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Favorites are losers at Del Mar Breeder's Cup

DEL MAR, Calif,--Del Mar Race Track sadly was the winner in the Breeder's Cup, Nov. 3-4, with its track beating the favorites in almost every race on the card.

GunRunner PMGun Runner going to the paddock to schoolThe biggest loser was Arrogate, a great race horse who simply couldn't handle the track at Del Mar.

Arrogate was slightly favored over eventual winner Gun Runner in the $6 Million Classic.

The experts on the television coverage of the Breeder's Cup said over and over again that Arrogate wasn't the same after Dubai, but he didn't have a chance to show his true ability after  Dubai, as his final three races were all at Del Mar, a track, as his jockey Mike Smith said after the race, he simply couldn't handle.

"Del Mar was clearly not a level playing field," said Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard. "It was a shame that Arrogate went out the way he did. I blame it on the track. It's surface is not what all horses like. Only two favorites in 13 races won."

"It's a shame, with so much money and so many championships on the line," said Sheppard.

"The track at Del Mar changed form," said renowned bloodstock agent Russell Jones. "Some horses relished it, and others hated it."

Being a seaside track, the going is very different from all the other tracks in the country that are inland tracks.

Golfers know the huge difference between the land at a links course by the sea and the land at inland courses.

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Ebanour wins the Pa. Hunt Cup for 2nd year in a row

UNIONVILLE, Pa--Ebanour not only won the $35,000, four mile Pennsylvania Hunt Cup on Nov. 5 for the second year in a row, he also, for the second year in a row, hadn't been scheduled to run in the Hunt Cup.

Ebanour Darren Nagle to wire in PHC BESTEbanour, ridden by Darren Nagle But this year, despite winning by 18 lengths, he had to withstand a claim of foul against him lodged by Sean McDermott, rider of the second placed Hot Rize, claiming interference at the third to last fence.

Deciding the claim took a long time, but it was finally disallowed.

Owned by Irvin S. Naylor, trained by Cyril Murphy and ridden by Darren Nagle in the Hunt Cup, Ebanour had again been scheduled to run in the International Gold Cup in The Plains, Va., as he also had been last year.

"After he won at the Gold Cup in the spring, we had hoped to get back to the Gold Cup," said Murphy. "But when he ran at Far Hills, he ran and jumped terrible. He never got into the rhythm. He rapped an ankle behind, so we thought he needed the extra week before running again."

"Last year, he missed the Gold Cup because he fell at Geneseo, and again needed more time between races," said Murphy.

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Jack Fisher uncatchable as NSA Leading Trainer

With one steeplechase meet left on the 2017 calendar, JACK FISHER is uncatchable as both Leading Trainer - Races Won, with 25 wins from 116 starts, and Leading Trainer - Money Won, with $1,319,900.

Mr Hot Stuff left rallies over last to catch Modem center All the Way Jose in Grand National BEST 8 bitMr Hot Stuff, left, rallies over the last to catch Modem, center, and All the Way Jose in Grand National Fisher has had a number of wins in meets during the last three weeks, including winning the G1, $400,000 Grand National Hurdle Stakes on Oct. 21 at the Far Hills Race Meeting in Far Hills, N.J., with Mr. Hot Stuff, who beat Modem and All the Way Jose by a nose and a nose.

"Mr. Hot Stuff is obviously a quality horse," said Fisher. "He ran in the Derby. He was pulled up in the Iroquois. We were going to do a race at Saratoga, but he was shod the day before, and he got pricked. At Belmont (in the Lonesome Glory), we were just setting him up for Far Hills."

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Mr. Hot Stuff wins Grand National, throwing the race for the Eclipse Award even wider open

FAR HILLS, N.J.--Mr. Hot Stuff won the $400,000 G1 Grand National Hurdle Stakes at Far Hills Race Meet on Oct. 21, beating Modem by a nose with All the Way Jose another nose back, making what had been the muddy waters of the selection of the Eclipse Award into a complete morass.

Mr Hot Stuff left rallies over last to catch Modem center All the Way Jose in Grand National BEST 8 bitMr Hot Stuff, left, rallies over the last fence to catch Modem, center, and All the Way Jose in the Grand National There have been five G1 steeplechase races and now five different winners, so without a clear champion, what criteria should be used to determine the winner of the Eclipse Award?

Should it be the last horse to win a G1 or the horse that's had the best overall record for the year?

If it's the last horse to win a G1, the it would be Mr. Hot Stuff, who also won the race with the biggest purse of $400,000.

If it's the horse with the best overall record, would it be All the Way Jose, who won the G1 Lonesome Glory and placed third in two other G1 stakes as well as winning a handicap and placing second and third in two other handicaps, or Modem, who placed second in four G1 races but has never won a race in this country.

Scorpiancer, owned by Bruton Street-US, trained by Jack Fisher and ridden by Sean McDermott, won the G3 Temple Gwathmey April 22 in Middleburg and won the first G1 of the year, the Calvin Houghland Iroquois on May 13, but he hasn't raced since.

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More Articles ...

  1. Free Drop Billy wins Futurity - Union Rags has two qualified for the Breeders Cup
  2. All the Way Jose wins the Lonesome Glory, throws race to Eclipse Award wide open
  3. West Coast wins G1 Pa. Derby, making a strong argument to be Eclipse 3 y.o. champ
  4. Page McKenny wins the $100,000 Roanoke Stakes, goes over $1.5 million in earnings
  5. Diplomat wins N.Y. Turf Writers to lead in race for Eclipse Award
  6. Oldzfourfortytwo wins the $100,000 Mark McDermott Stakes at Presque Isle
  7. Union Rags' get continue to win, two placed in Stakes
  8. Bernie Houghton has second stakes winner at Presque Isle
  9. NSA rule banning apprentice riders at Saratoga roils steeplechase world
  10. Swansea Mile wins G1 Smithwick Stakes, Show Court takes the Novice Stakes
  11. Imply, trained by Bernie Houghton, won the Northern Fling Stakes to become a multiple stakes winning mare
  12. Sheppard's Parx winner has him anticipating Saratoga
  13. Successful June stakes day at Penn National overshadowed by Rojas drug trial
  14. Miss Inclusive and Eighth Wonder named co-winners of 2016 Parx Oaks
  15. N.J-bred Irish War Cry second in the Belmont, Mor Spirit wins $1.2 million Metropolitan
  16. Amy Rowe’s For Goodness Sake and Buttonwood Farm’s All The Way Jose won featured races at Fair Hill Spring meet
  17. 2 Pa-breds win on undercards of Black-Eyed Susan and Preakness
  18. Hendriks-trained Mystic Strike wins Radnor Hunt Cup
  19. Orchestra Leader and Winter House win at High Hope
  20. Fenwick’s Doc Cebu wins Willowdale Steeplechase Stakes
  21. Jack Fisher wins three, including $200,000 Stakes, at Iroquois
  22. Ebanour wins Gold Cup for second consecutive year
  23. Neilson sisters and Cyril Murphy saddle winners at Winterthur
  24. Union Rags' get on Oaks and Derby days
  25. Sheppard wins three of four races at Atlanta, Hendriks wins two more for his Mother, Wendy, Lord Shanakill’s son sets course record
  26. Air Maggy, McLane Hendriks win Va. p-to-p championships
  27. Derwins Prospector wins Maryland Hunt Cup in two-horse duel
  28. Pa-bred winners include Page McKinney, Discreet Senorita and Rose Tree
  29. Photo Gallery from Maryland Hunt Cup, 2017
  30. Hendriks saddled three winners at Aiken, Sheppard had winners at Charleston and Carolina Cup
  31. Lemony Bay wins My Lady’s Manor, giving Jack Fisher two wins for the day.
  32. Fair Hill point-to-Point crowned Joshua G Overall champion in the Delaware Valley Point-to-Point series
  33. Md. Hunt Cup winner Senior Senator wins at Elkridge-Harford In prep for this year’s Hunt Cup
  34. Eventing star wins first time out in timber race at Brandywine Hills
  35. Sheppard, Brion, Neilson and Valentine successful in Maryland and Virginia Point-to-Points
  36. Kathy Neilson to defend her Leading Trainer title at DelVal Point-to-Points
  37. 2 turns may be next for hot Union Rags filly Tequilita
  38. Sheppard still breaking records after 50 years

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