Churchill Downs’ “Stephen Foster Night” Could Be Huge Racing Party

(Seeking the Soul winning the Clark Handicap / Coady Photography & Courtesy of Churchill Downs)

From the Churchill Downs Media Team:

Saturday night’s Downs After Dark Presented by Budweiser 11-race program at Churchill Downs is highlighted by the $600,000 Stephen Foster Presented by GE Appliances (GII) and $250,000 Fleur de Lis presented by Budweiser (GII). Both races are part of the Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” Challenge Series. The winner of the Stephen Foster receives an automatic berth to the Nov. 2 Breeders’ Cup Classic while the Fleur de Lis victor receives a starting gate spot in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff.

Along with the Stephen Foster and Fleur de Lis, the 11-race card offers three other graded stakes events for Thoroughbreds and a Grade I event for Arabians.

Below are the known probable entrants for the six stakes races, according to Churchill Downs assistant racing secretary and stakes coordinator Dan Bork (note: race order is tentative and subject to change):

Race 5 (8:03 p.m. ET) – $150,000 Matt Winn (Grade III), 3-year-olds, 1 1/16 miles, 22ndrunning

(Mr. Money after winning the G3 Pat Day Mile / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

Probable (with trainer): Armistice Day (Tommy Drury); Cashanova (Brad Cox); Knicks Go (Ben Colebrook); Mr. Money (Bret Calhoun); and Signalman (Kenny McPeek)

Race 6 (8:37 p.m. ET) – $250,000 Wise Dan (Grade II), 3-year-olds and up, 1 1/16 miles on turf, 30th running

(Mr. Misunderstood winning at Churchill Downs / Photo Courtesy of Churchill Downs)

Probable (with trainer): Admission Office (Brian Lynch); All Right (John Ortiz); Bourbon Resolution (Ian Wilkes); El Picaro (CHI) (Ignacio Correas IV); First Premio (Mark Casse); Hembree (Mike Maker); Itsinthepost (FR) (Jeff Mullins); Mr. Misunderstood (Brad Cox); Parlor (Eddie Kenneally); and Siem Riep (Ben Colebrook)

Race 7 (9:12 p.m. ET) – $250,000 Fleur de Lis Presented by Budweiser (Grade II), fillies and mares, 1 1/8 miles, 44th running

(Blue Prize after winning at Keeneland / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

Probable (with trainer): Auspicious Babe (Dallas Stewart); Blue Prize (ARG) (Ignacio Correas IV); Elate (Bill Mott); Go Google Yourself (Paul McGee); Red Ruby (Kellyn Gorder); She’s a Julie (Steve Asmussen); and Skeptic (Rusty Arnold II)

Race 8 (9:47 p.m. ET) – $600,000 Stephen Foster Presented by GE Appliances (Grade II), 3-year-olds and up, 1 1/8 miles, 38th running

2/16/2019 – Silver Dust with jockey Jack Gilligan aboard turns into the stretch and goes on to capture the 34th running of the Grade III $150,000 Mineshaft Handicap from Fair Grounds. Hodges Photography / Britt Benson

Probable (with trainer): Alkhaatam (Danny Peitz); Draft Pick (Peter Eurton); Exulting (Mike Maker); Gift Box (John Sadler); King Zachary (Graham Motion); Quip (Rodolphe Brisset); Rated R Superstar (Cipriano Contreras); Seeking the Soul (Dallas Stewart); Silver Dust (Bret Calhoun); Thirstforlife (Wes Hawley); Tom’s d’Etat (Al Stall Jr.); and Yoshida (JPN) (Bill Mott)

Race 9 (10:19 p.m. ET) – $150,000 Regret (Grade III), 3-year-old fillies, 1 1/8 miles on turf, 50th running

(Winter Sunset winning at the Fair Grounds / Photo Courtesy of the Fair Grounds)

Probable (with trainer): Belle Laura (Norm Casse); Choate Bridge (Brendan Walsh); Fortunate Girl (Mark Casse); Gamblin Train (Buff Bradley); Hard Legacy (Norm Casse); La Feve (FR) (Graham Motion); Princesa Carolina (Kenny McPeek); She’sonthewarpath (Steve Margolis); and Winter Sunset (Wayne Catalano)

Race 10 (10:48 p.m. ET) – $100,000 President of the UAE Cup Sponsored by the UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs (Grade I), Arabian 4-year-olds and up, 1 1/16 miles, 7thrunning at Churchill Downs

Nominations (with trainer): Bellfastt (Fenneka T. Bentley); Big Ben AA (Jerenesto Torrez); Dahesstiny MC (Bentley); Dance With Me BW (Torrez); Easter Man (Torrez); Madjikman (Bentley); Mizzdora (Jeremias Castro); Paddys Day (Leonie Seesing); Quick and Rich (Lynn A. Ashby); R B Kindle (Russell Vicchrilli); RB Nash (Torrez); RB Texas Hold Em (Nicole Ruggeri); Risky Red (Seesing); Southerland (Ruggeri); Thess Is Awesome (Ashby); and Uptown Cruisedirector (Ashby)

Entries will be taken and post positions will be drawn Wednesday.

The Stephen Foster is the richest of six graded stakes races on Saturday’s special 11-race night racing card that begins at 6 p.m. Total purses on the evening total $1.93 million, which makes it the most lucrative racing day for horsemen at Churchill Downs outside of the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks programs.

Saturday night’s card will feature an all-stakes Pick 5 in Races 5-9 and an all-stakes Pick 4 in Races 6-9. In total, there will be three Pick 5 wagers (Races 1-5, 5-9, and 7-11) and three Pick 4 wagers (Races 2-5, 6-9, and 8-11).

Along with the spectacular racing program, the evening will feature a New Orleans-style theme with various street performers and a Jackson Square-style marketplace in the Plaza featuring local artists and Churchill Downs merchandise. The Plaza Stage entertainment will be the Dirty Dozen Brass Band – the popular New Orleans-based band that takes the foundation of brass band music and incorporates a blend of genres including Bebop Jazz, Funk and R&B/Soul.

Also, the connections of Country House – owners Mrs. J.V. Shields Jr., E. J. M. McFadden Jr.and Larry, Nancy and Jaime Roth’s LNJ Foxwoods; Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott; and jockey Flavien Prat – will receive their engraved Kentucky Derby 145 trophies in a special Woodford Reserve Winner’ Circle ceremony following the third race, which is scheduled for 6:56 p.m.

Fans in attendance at Churchill Downs on Saturday will be able to take pictures with the engraved Kentucky Derby trophies just inside the Paddock Gate from 5-6:30 p.m.

NBCSN will televise three live races from 8:30-10 p.m. as part of its 2019 “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In presented by America’s Best Racing” television schedule. NBCSN’s onsite team will include Randy Moss, Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey, Donna Brothers, Britney Eurton and Matt Bernier.

Also, TVG will have live on-track updates throughout the night and Horse Racing Radio Network (HRRN) will air live coverage on SiriusXM 156 and online at HorseRacingRadio.netfrom 8-10 p.m.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.churchilldowns.com.

DOWNS AFTER DARK THEME IS ‘THE BIG EASY’ – One of Louisville’s biggest summer parties returns in earnest to Churchill Downs on Saturday as the home of the Kentucky Derby welcomes back its wildly-popular “Downs After Dark Presented by Budweiser” nighttime racing program for Stephen Foster night.

Churchill Downs will bring Bourbon Street to Louisville with the evening’s theme of “The Big Easy.” Guests are encouraged to wear New Orleans-inspired purple, green or gold.

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band will be the crown jewel of this year’s Spring Meet entertainment when they headline Saturday’s Downs After Dark with a performance on the Plaza Stage from 8:30-11:30 p.m. The New Orleans-based Dirty Dozen Brass Band is a world famous music machine whose name is synonymous with genre-bending romps and high-octane performances. The band has taken the traditional foundation of brass band music and incorporated it into a blend of genres including Bebop Jazz, Funk, R&B and Soul to create a unique sound they describe as a “musical gumbo.”

Entertainment will also include a high-swinging, hard-blowing vintage jazz and pop performance by local four-beat band the West Market Stompers (6-8 p.m.), a Second Line Parade and Bourbon Street-themed cocktails and street performers.

General admission to Churchill Downs is $12 on Saturday with a first post of 6 p.m. and gates at 5 p.m. Box seats are $27 and reserved dining packages are $69. All ticket options can be purchased online at www.ChurchillDowns.com/Tickets.

CHURCHILL DOWNS CHALLENGE HANDICAPPING CONTEST ON STEPHEN FOSTER NIGHT – Some of the nation’s elite horseplayers will descend upon Churchill Downs on Saturday night and attempt to secure seats at the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge as they pit their handicapping skills against the best Louisville has to offer.

The Churchill Downs Challenge Handicapping Contest is a “real money” handicapping tournament with a $1,500 buy-in, of which $1,000 will be used by participants to wager on Saturday night’s Stephen Foster card with the other $500 going toward the entry fee and prize pool. Wager types permitted are Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta and Daily Double only.

The top two finishers in the tournament will receive $10,000 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge seats for the Nov. 1-2 event plus a $1,000 travel voucher. The third-place finisher will receive a $2,500 voucher.

Saturday’s prize pool is based on 50 entries. All entry fees will be paid back to prize pool should more than 50 entries participate. Horseplayers can register by emailing Gary Palmisano at Gary.Palmisano@KyDerby.com.

ALL-STAKES PICK 5 TO BE OFFERED SATURDAY NIGHT – Churchill Downs will make it a special night for bettors at Saturday’s “Downs After Dark” as the track offers an all-stakes Pick 5 as part of its special wagering menu.

The all-stakes Pick 5 on Races 5-9 starting at 7:57 p.m., which encompasses the Matt Winn (Race 5), Wise Dan (Race 6), Fleur de Lis (Race 7), Stephen Foster (Race 8) and Regret (Race 9). There also will be an all-stakes Pick 4 on Races 6-9 starting at 8:30 p.m.

All told, there will be three Pick 5s (Races 1-5, Races 5-9 and Races 7-11) and three Pick 4s (Races 2-5, Races 6-9 and Races 8-11) on the night. Both the Pick 4 and Pick 5 are 50-cent minimum bets.

The 20-cent minimum Single 6 Jackpot will cover Races 4-9 and the $1 Super Hi 5 will be staged on the final race of the night.

(Trainer Tim Glyshaw after the Breeders’ Cup Turf Spring / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

GETTING TO KNOW TIM GLYSHAW – In the second part of a weekly series that will run Sundays in the month of June, we get to know jockeys and trainers in their life outside of the racetrack. Each week will feature a different jockey or trainer and today will feature trainer Tim Glyshaw.

Glyshaw has been training horses since 2004 after teaching middle and high school in Indiana. The native Hoosier is a passionate Indiana University sports fan. Glyshaw lives in the greater Louisville area and splits his time between Churchill Downs, Indiana Grand and Fair Grounds.

Q: When you go home, what is the first thing you watch on TV?

A: I usually have my TV set on ESPN.

Q: Who is/was your favorite IU athlete?

A: Definitely basketball player Calbert Cheney.

Q: What radio station do you listen to in the car?

A: Most of the time I’ll have the radio set to SiriusXM’s Lithium channel. That was all the music I used to listen to in college.

Q: Have you ever cheered for University of Kentucky basketball?

A: No shot. I always enjoy catching grief when I run horses at Keeneland and wear IU gear.

Q: Who was your favorite horse that you didn’t get to train?

A: Cigar.

Q: When did you decide to become a trainer?

A: I taught school and coached for a few years in Indiana. I always found it enjoyable to coach athletics but I wasn’t really into the teaching part of my job. I decided to make a complete change and got into horse racing and never looked back.”

Q: What was the worst excuse a jockey has given you after a poor ride?

A: “He’s just not my type of horse.”

Q: If you could go anywhere on vacation, where would it be?

A: We don’t get many days off in this industry but if I had to take some time away, I’d love to go to Aruba.

DOWN THE STRETCH – Entering Sunday’s 10-race program, Brian Hernandez Jr. was six wins away from 600 career Churchill Downs victories while Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen was five wins away from 700 career victories beneath the Twin Spires. … There is a $90,261 carryover in the 20-cent Single 6 Jackpot Sunday. The sequence will span Races 5-10. … Racing is set to continue Thursday for Twilight Thursday presented by Blue Moon.The evening will feature eight races with a post time of 5 p.m. along with $1 Blue Moon drafts, $1 domestic draft beer, food trucks, lawn games, one-on-one expert betting advice and live music on the Plaza Stage.

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds

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