Connections Archives - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: ‘I Love Horses; That’s The Bottom Line’

It had been nine long years since Randy Morse had last saddled a graded stakes winner, leaving the trainer to walk into the Pimlico saddling paddock on May 19 with plenty on the line for the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes. He was preparing Taxed, the 3-year-old filly by Collected Morse had claimed on behalf […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: With Promising 3-Year-Old, Antonucci Focused On ‘What Really Matters’

To the outside world, it may appear as though the winner’s circle is the ultimate goal for horse racing participants. For trainer Jena Antonucci, however, a trip to the winner’s circle is just a byproduct of her actual goals. Just a few days after sending out perhaps the biggest winner of her career, 3-year-old Arcangelo […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: A Kentucky Derby ‘Cinderella Story’

The presence of Two Phil’s in this year’s Kentucky Derby has all the makings of a Disney movie: he’s the horse nobody wanted who makes it all the way to the pinnacle of the sport. Anthony Sagan, breeder and a co-owner along with his father, Phil Sagan (one of the two Phils), knows just how […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: Hard Work Is Paying Off For Olver

Maddy Olver has spent most of her adult life beating the sunrise to the backstretch. To the young horsewoman in the pre-dawn twilight, it all felt necessary. Some dreams were worth sacrificing for, and becoming an apprentice jockey this winter made it all worthwhile. “At the beginning, I wasn’t sure what it would look like, […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: ‘I Don’t Think Anybody Would Do What He Did’

Fans tuning in to Sunday’s Sunland Park Derby card may be surprised by the appearance of jockey Felipe Valdez’ name in the program. With a mount in seven of the day’s 11 races, the 43-year-old Valdez is in the midst of a comeback he truly never saw coming. Plagued by injuries throughout his career, including […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: ‘Educated Risk’ Proves A Practical Move

Leslie Amestoy walked away from the OBS auction ring when bidding rose above $180,000. That was the budget she and her husband, Pierre, had considered for the son of Practical Joke, after all. Minutes later, Pierre Amestoy returned to the table and showed his wife the sales ticket: he’d bought the colt for a final […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: Having Pennsylvania-Bred On Road To The Classics Is ‘Why We’re In The Game’

It was a perfect “circle of life” moment: breeder Christian Black watched Angel of Empire upset the Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds from the foaling office at Blackstone Farm in Pennsylvania, patiently awaiting the birth of the next generation. “I believe I ran out and jumped up and down like a 20-year-old […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: ‘More In The Pipeline’ After Monomoy Girl

Near the conclusion of two-time Eclipse Award winner Monomoy Girl’s career, the following suggestion was made to breeder Brendan Gallagher: “You want to enjoy it while it’s happening, because it’s never going to happen again.” “Well, I said to that person, ‘If I really thought it would never happen again, I’m not so sure I’d […]

Breeders’ Cup Presents Connections: Kirstenbosch No Garden Variety Homebred For Keith Abrahams

Owner/breeder Keith Abrahams was quietly confident in Kirstenbosch ahead of last weekend’s Grade 3 La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita. The filly, named for a famous botanical garden in Abrahams’ native South Africa, proved his confidence was not misplaced when she won by a nose.  Kirstenbosch became the second homebred graded stakes winner to race […]