Week of March 21, 2011
By Dana Byerly, Hello Race Fans Co-founder

It was a record breaking weekend that saw its share of surprises. The biggest surprise might have been The Factor’s 6 1/4 length domination in his two-turn debut in the Rebel Stakes. Many had questions about his ability to stretch out to the 1 1/16 miles. Not only did he handle it well, he galloped out great and trainer Bob Baffert stated “He clearly could have gone a mile and an eighth today.” Also surprising was that Sway Away, the horse with the pedigree that suggests that he should excel at the distance and longer, was a non-factor as was J P’s Gusto. Baffert is mulling his many options for The Factor.

Hilda’s Passion turned in an incredible performance in the Inside Information Stakes at Gulfstream to break champion sprinter Big Drama’s seven furlong record. Her goal is the Humana Distaff on the Kentucky Derby undercard. Havre de Grace not only beat rival Blind Luck in the Azeri Stakes, she equaled the current stakes record with a final time of 1:42.19. The fourth meeting between Havre de Grace and Blind Luck brings them to a tie with the Alabama Stakes (replay) and Delaware Oaks (replay) going to Blind Luck and the Fitz Dixon Cotillion (replay) and Azeri Stakes (replay) going to Havre de Grace. Both fillies are pointing to the April 16 Apple Blossom at Oaklawn Park, a race that could also lure Switch and Miss Match.

If you missed it last week, we rolled our first horse profile featuring Azeri. This coming weekend is one fans and players look forward to all year, the Dubai World Cup. The US always sends several horses to compete in the various races and this year is no different. We’ll take a look at these races in Ten Things You Should Know About this week plus we’ll bring you an overview of each of the races at Raceday 360.

Don’t forget to join our Road to the Roses League!
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And as always, keep up with all the 2011 Kentucky Derby and 2011 Kentucky Oaks commentary at Raceday 360 Wire!

Last Week’s Races

2011 Cicada Stakes Replay
Quantum Miss holds off the late charge of Coax Liberty to wire the field.

2011 Azeri Stakes Replay
Havre De Grace gets the best of Blind Luck again and sets a new stakes record while doing it.

2011 Rebel Stakes Replay
The Factor proved that he can be a factor beyond seven furlongs.

2011 Inside Information Stakes Replay
Favorite Hilda’s Passion set blazing fractions to wire the field and set a new track record.

Maclean’s Music Maiden Replay
First time starter for the connections of Rachel Alexandra impresses by laying down incredibly fast fractions.

2011 Orchid Stakes Replay
La Luna de Miel makes it two for two in the US.

2011 Santa Ana Stakes Replay
Malibu Pier regains the lead after conceding the it to Lily Fa Pootz going into the stretch

Upcoming Graded Stakes Races

Check probable starters at Horse Racing Nation’s Stakes Tracker

See you at the track!

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