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Breeders' Cup notebook

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published November 5, 2000


Day shut out; Pitino, Crum entries run behind

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- It was a bad day for Pat Day at the Breeders' Cup.

Day, the most successful jockey in the event's 17-year history with 11 victories, went 0-for-6 Saturday. His best finish was second aboard Surfside in the Distaff.

Day had won at least one race in the past three Breeders' Cups. He had won the previous two Classics, including last year's aboard Cat Thief.

He rode the D. Wayne Lukas-trained 4-year-old colt again Saturday but finished seventh.

COACHES CORNER: Coach Rick Pitino of the NBA's Boston Celtics and University of Louisville coach Denny Crum could not translate their success on the basketball court to victories.

Nasty Storm, co-owned by Crum, finished eighth in the Juvenile Fillies, her worst finish in six starts.

Pitino, the former University of Kentucky coach, fared even worse with both entries from his Celtic Pride Stables. Valiant Halory, trained by Nick Zito, finished 12th of 14 in the Sprint. A P Valentine, also trained by Zito, finished last of 14 in the Juvenile.

SCRATCH OFF: Two horses were scratched from their starts in the morning.

Euchre, a 4-year-old colt trained by Bobby Frankel, was entered in the Classic but was pulled after coughing during a gallop Friday.

The Neil Drysdale-trained Freefourracing was scratched from the Juvenile Fillies.

"She was sore on the inside left front," Drysdale said after taking the 2-year-old to the track in the morning. "She was not herself. She was not 100 percent."

Drysdale called the problem "minor."

"We will let Mother Nature heal it," Drysdale said. "We will just get her ready for next year."

INJURY TIMEOUT: Spanish Fern, another Frankel-trained filly, pulled up with a leg injury shortly after the start of the Filly & Mare Turf and was taken to an equine hospital in Lexington. Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, a horse veterinarian, said the horse had swelling in her upper left leg.

HIGH SPEED: NBC Sports, which has broadcast every Breeders' Cup since its inception in 1984, debuted a high-speed camera that put viewers closer to the action in the stretch.

The camera was attached to a pulley system above the grandstand. Remote-controlled cables can move the camera at 65 mph.

The system, called CAM-CAT, is long established in European horse racing but had never been used for a race in America. It also will be used at a NASCAR event next weekend at Homestead.

James Woods, a technician for Aerial Camera Systems, the England-based company that controls the system, said Churchill Downs officials have approached the company about using the camera at May's Kentucky Derby.

Last fall, NBC Sports secured the rights to broadcast the Triple Crown races for the first time next year.

CROWD CONTROL: Saturday's attendance was 76,043, the second largest in Breeders' Cup history. The figure trailed only the 80,452 who attended in 1998, the last time it was held at Churchill Downs.

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