(Twenty Carat / Coady Photography)

From the Keeneland Media Team:


Trainer Wesley Ward started the 15-day Keeneland Spring Meet in rousing fashion Friday by winning the $150,000 Beaumont (G3) Presented by Keeneland Select with Three Chimneys Farm’s Twenty Carat and running 1-2 in the $100,000 Palisades Turf Sprint with Chasing Artie and Fauci.

“They all came back well,” said Ward, who will shoot for two more stakes victories this afternoon when he runs his Bound for Nowhere in the $200,000 Shakertown (G2) and Ten Broeck Farm’s Kimari in the $300,000 Madison (G1). Editor’s Note: Both of those later two won, as well.

Ward said there is a chance Twenty Carat could run April 30 at Churchill Downs in the $300,000 Eight Belles (G2) Presented by Smithfield going 7 furlongs or maybe take a shot at the $1.25 million Kentucky Oaks (G1) going 1 1/8 miles.

“We will see if there are any defections from the Oaks,” said Ward, whose filly would have to be a late nominee to the race. By winning the Beaumont, Twenty Carat picked up 10 qualifying points for the Oaks, a total that would rank her 21st on the leaderboard.

The Oaks is limited to the top 14 point earners that pass the entry box. The leaderboard will be finalized this afternoon with four races carrying 100 points to the winner to be run, including Keeneland’s Central Bank Ashland (G1).

In her stakes debut, Twenty Carat defeated even-money favorite Slumber Party by 1½ lengths. Trainer Kelly Breen said Slumber Party, owned by Gary and Mary West, came out of the race fine and would remain at Keeneland for the time being with her next start to be determined.

Ward said there are no immediate plans for Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s homebred Chasing Artie or Lindy Farms and Ice Wine Stable’s Fauci.

(Scarlett Sky / Coady Photography)


Stuart Janney III’s homebred Scarlett Sky exited his Friday victory in the $150,000 Kentucky Utilities Transylvania (G3) in good order, according to Lindsay Schultz, assistant to trainer Shug McGaughey.

“He is super this morning,” Schultz said. “He ate up everything last night.”

Plans are to be determined for Scarlett Sky with one possibility being the $500,000 American Turf (G2) at Churchill Downs on May 1.

That race is on the agenda for John C. Oxley’s Palazzi and Three Diamonds Farm’s Fire At Will, the respective second- and third-place finishers in the Kentucky Utilities Transylvania.

Trainer Mark Casse confirmed Saturday morning that Palazzi would point to the American Turf following his runner-up effort in his graded stakes debut. Palazzi returned to Churchill Friday night to rejoin Casse’s main string in Louisville.

Following the Kentucky Utilities Transylvania, trainer Mike Maker indicated the American Turf also might be next for Fire At Will, winner of last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1). Fire At Will returned to Maker’s main base at Trackside Training Center in Louisville Saturday morning.


During Friday’s 10-race card on opening day of the Keeneland Spring Meet, trainer Rusty Arnold saddled two winners to raise his Keeneland victory total to 282 and move him one ahead of Bill Mott for second all time behind the 295 victories by D. Wayne Lukas.

“Bill and I have been going back and forth probably 20 times over the years (for most wins here),” Arnold said Saturday morning. “I kid him that he may have more bullets than I do, but I am younger.”

Arnold, who saddled his first winner here in the late 1970s, tied Mott when Calumet Farm’s Gear Jockeywon the fifth race going a mile on the grass and passed him with Reiko and Michael Baum’s Illiogami when she posted her initial victory in the 10th race. He almost had a third victory when first-time starter MagicQuest, owned by G. Watts Humphrey Jr., was beaten a neck in the sixth race.

Arnold said Gear Jockey, who finished third as a maiden in the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) at Santa Anita, might be pointed to the $120,000 Opening Verse going a mile on the turf April 29 at Churchill Downs. He called Illiogami “a filly with a future” and said she will head into the allowance ranks.


Donegal Racing, Joseph Bulger and the Estate of Peter Coneway’s Grade 1 winner Arklow tops a roster of 38 horses nominated to the 36th running of the $200,000 Elkhorn (G2) to be run at 1½ miles over the turf on April 17.

Trained by Brad Cox, Arklow finished sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) here last fall before closing 2020 with a victory in the Hollywood Turf Cup (G2) at Del Mar. An earner of more than $2.6 million, Arklow finished sixth in last year’s Elkhorn.

Scheduled the day before the Elkhorn, the 26th running of the $100,000 Baird Doubledogdare (G3) for fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles on the main track drew 28 nominations.

Headlining the nominees are Grade 1 winners Dunbar Road and Speech, both of whom have not run since competing here in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

Peter Brant’s Dunbar Road, winner of the 2019 Alabama (G1), closed 2020 with a third-place finish behind champion Monomoy Girl in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) for trainer Chad Brown.

Speech, winner of the Central Bank Ashland (G1) last July for trainer Michael McCarthy, finished sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint. She is owned by the partnership of Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Madaket Stables and Heider Family Stables.


April 9 races. Entries taken Tuesday.

$300,000 Maker’s Mark Mile (G1) – Get Smokin (trainer Tom Bush), Raging Bull (FR) (Chad Brown), Ride a Comet (Mark Casse), Sacred Life (FR) (Brown), Somelikmeithotbrown (Mike Maker). Possible:Hit the Road (Dan Blacker), Smooth Like Strait (Michael McCarthy).

$100,000 Limestone Turf Sprint – Alda (Graham Motion), Feeling Mischief (Michael Campbell), Inajiffy (Joe Sharp), Navratilova (Rusty Arnold), Phantom Vision (Mike Maker), Tobys Heart (Brian Lynch). Possible: Goin Good (Brad Cox), Nimbostratus (FR) (Peter Miller). 

April 10 races. Entries taken Wednesday.

$300,000 Coolmore Jenny Wiley (G1) – Daddy Is a Legend (George Weaver), Etoile (FR) (Chad Brown), Micheline (Mike Stidham), Tamahere (FR) (Brown). Possible: Juliet Foxtrot (GB) (Brad Cox).

$200,000 Stonestreet Lexington (G3) – It’s My House (Robert Hess Jr.), King Fury (Kenny McPeek),Starrininmydreams (Dallas Stewart), Ultimate Badger (Dale Romans). Possible: Unbridled Honor (Todd Pletcher).

$150,000 Ben Ali (G3) – Possible: Fearless (Todd Pletcher), Night Ops (Brad Cox). 

$100,000 Giant’s Causeway (L) – Dixieincandyland (Eddie Kenneally), In Good Spirits (Al Stall Jr.), Jakarta (Mike Maker), Karak (Wesley Ward). Possible: Oooh Barracuda (Blake Kelly).