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Impressive fields assembled for Royal Ascot automatic qualifiers at Gulfstream Park




Automatic spots and a trip to Royal Ascot are on the line this Saturday at Gulfstream Park, with a pair of two-year-old turf stakes (the Royal Palm Juvenile and Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies) bearing important international implications. These five-furlong sprints each carry $120,000 purses and boast capacity fields of 12.

The Royal Palm series, launched last May, produced immediate returns in its inaugural year, with Crimson Advocate winning the Juvenile Fillies at Gulfstream Park before going on to land the prestigious Group 2 Queen Mary Stakes. Once again, this innovative series’ winners will receive an automatic berth into one of six two-year-old events at Royal Ascot, alongside a free equine travel stipend for shipping from the US.

Innovative partnerships like the Royal Palm are helping to improve North American participation and boost international interest at the world’s biggest meetings. 1/ST are putting their shoulders to the wheel for other ground-breaking initiatives in the immediate future, including recent partnerships with The Jockey Club (for the Group 1 Coral-Eclipse and the My Pension Expert July Cup) and France Galop (for the Group 1 Sumbe Prix Jean Romanet Stakes).

Meet the contenders for the Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies (Race 8):

#1-CHINA BLUE: Outrun fifth of 6 at Gulfstream May 2 and would be wheeling back on 9 days’ rest for trainer Javier Gonzalez. Last year’s runners in this race who had a Gulfstream prior outing finished fourth, eighth and ninth.

#2-KIP THE DISTANCE: Close-up second in debut dirt sprint at Gulfstream 9 days ago when finishing 6 lengths in front of returning rival China Blue. Sent off at nearly 22-1 at first asking for trainer Angel Rodriguez. Last year’s runners in this race who had a Gulfstream prior outing finished fourth, eighth and ninth.

#3-BUNRATTY MANOR: Trainer George Weaver (pictured above) swept last year’s Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies and Juvenile in the inaugural year for the event. Son of No Nay Never, who sired last year’s Royal Palm Juvenile winner No Nay Mets. Pair of turf works at Palm Beach Downs among the morning prep work for Saturday’s first outing. Sold for $195,000 at Goff’s yearling sale.

#4-YOU NEED ME: Rookie colt is by Triple Crown winner American Pharoah’s less-accomplished full-brother St. Patrick’s Day. Sold for $50,000 at Ocala in March and debuts off a series of dirt works for trainer J. David Braddy.

#5-BULLET: Trainer Mark Casse was third in this race last year with The Myth. Brings this $425,000 Keeneland September Yearling Sale buy to her debut off a long series of works at Casse farm and Palm Meadows. War Front colt is a maternal grandson of Surfside and great-grandson of Flanders, providing optimism for superior 2-year-old performances.

#6-RAMSEY POND: Owner Ken Ramsey’s sharp-working debut runner by Divisidero drew $100,000 at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale. Trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. and jockey Samy Camacho have strong 8-17 mark in tandem in recent years.

#7-THE QUEENS M G: 45-1 upset winner of her Keeneland dirt debut from tough post 11 was privately purchased and transferred to Saffie Joseph Jr.’s barn after that race. Last year’s winner Crimson Advocate was coming off a debut third on dirt at Keeneland. Has turf in her damside pedigree as her fourth dam Parade Green won the 1997 Mrs. Revere and 1998 Joe Namath (latter at Gulfstream) on turf.

#8-BOIS BLANC: Keeneland turf sprint debut runner-up at 24-1 odds was clearly second-best in that 11-runner lineup. Expect some early developers by sire First Samurai. Trainer Justin Wojczynski had a productive Keeneland meet with limited starters, just as his overall 2024 stats indicate.

#9-PERFECT SHANCES: Led every step in her lone start, a Keeneland dirt dash that clocked fifth-fastest of 9 two-year-old races at the 2024 Spring Meet. Trainer Wesley Ward finished second in this race last year with Ocean Mermaid, bet to 4-5 favoritism in her career debut. Last year’s winner Crimson Advocate was coming off a debut third on dirt at Keeneland. By dirt sprint star Shancelot, but her dam is full-sister to Sweet Harmony, who opened her career 2-2 including Monmouth’s Colleen Stakes turf sprinting.

#10-GOOD LONG CRY: Rookie enters on a modest string of 3-furlong drills on turf and dirt. Trainer George Weaver swept last year’s Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies and Juvenile in the inaugural year for the event. Sire Long On Value opened his career 3-3, earned more than $1 million and was a Grade 1-winning turf sprinter.

#11-MY EMMY: Trainer Mark Casse was third in this race last year with The Myth and notably campaigned this filly’s sire War of Will to 2019 Preakness glory and eventually Grade 1-winning turf credentials. Trio of published workouts at Palm Meadows includes a pair of half-miles on turf.

#12-UNCHAINED ELAINE: Clear-cut runner-up in her April 12 Gulfstream dirt sprint debut. Daughter of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, who, at stud, has had his most success with turf fillies. Trainer Patrick Biancone, who trained the dam Razorback Lady to success sprinting on dirt and turf, turns to jockey Keith Asmussen, fresh off the conclusion of the Oaklawn Park meeting. Last year’s runners in this race who had a Gulfstream prior outing finished fourth, eighth and ninth.

Meet the contenders for the Royal Palm Juvenile (Race 10):

#1-MAKEIT TO CHEYENNE: From the female family of elite sprinter Munnings, this son of Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner Liam’s Map debuts for trainer Mark Casse. Series of workouts at Palm Meadows includes one on turf and a bullet on dirt May 4.

#2-ENTERDADRAGON: $17,000 purchase by Outwork debuts off a series of 7 workouts at Palm Meadows, the most recent of which came on turf. Outwork sired last year’s brilliant early season 2-year-old filly Brightwork, winner of the Debutante, Adirondack and Spinaway Stakes. Jose D’Angelo trains the direct descendent of the legendary mare Personal Ensign, his fourth dam.

#3-MADROC: Constitution colt chased and tired to be fifth in his Keeneland turf debut April 25, finishing behind Royal Palm Juvenile rival Bright Skittle. Ocala-based colt returns to Florida for trainer Mary Lightner. Dam Holly Hundy was a Colonial Downs turf sprint stakes winner.

#4-CLASSY WAR: Trainer Mark Casse notably campaigned this colt’s sire War of Will to 2019 Preakness glory and eventually Grade 1-winning turf credentials. Boasts bullet drills on turf not once, but twice, at Palm Meadows for the debut, notable this time of year when working amongst older horses.

#5-REACH FOR THE ROSE: Home-bred debuts for owner Ken Ramsey and trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. By Holy Bull-Florida Derby winner Audible and whose second dam was a juvenile turf stakes winner for the Ramseys. Solid turf work coming into this capped a string of 6 clocked morning moves.

#6-I KNOW I KNOW: Long, strong series of 8 workouts for the debut, including a bullet on turf at Palm Meadows on Sunday. Trainer Patrick Biancone tabs Keith Asmussen to ride, fresh off the Oaklawn meeting that closed last weekend. Sire Jess’s Dream, the impeccable son of Curlin-Rachel Alexandra, won his 1 and only start before going to stud. His best success at stud has been with turfer My Dani Girl.

#7-GABALDON: $9,000 purchase by Gone Astray debuts after 7 Palm Meadows published workouts for Jose D’Angelo. Solid turf move April 26 among those. D’Angelo teams with Emisael Jaramillo, winning at a 20% rate in tandem over the past year-plus.

#8-RAISE THE BAR: Cruised to victory in his lone start, a Keeneland dirt dash that clocked second-fastest of 9 two-year-old races at the 2024 Spring Meet. Trainer Wesley Ward finished seventh in this race last year with 4-5 favorite and debut runner Holding the Line. Ward has trained 2 other offspring of this mare, both of which found the winner’s circle in their first or second start.

#9-BRIGHT SKITTLE: Late-running debut third on turf at Keeneland on April 25, finishing 1 length in front of Royal Palm Juvenile rival Madroc after a troubled break. $142,000 pricetag on this son of Twirling Candy and the debut-winning mare Harbor Lights (her first foal to race). Trainer Rusty Arnold has had many top turf sprinters in his care, including Leinster and Gear Jockey.

#10-GOVERNOR SAM: Trainer George Weaver swept last year’s Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies and Juvenile in the inaugural year for the event, winning this race with debut runner No Nay Mets. This rookie sold for $275,000 at Ocala in April and is from the first crop of $2.7 million earner Improbable. Grandsire City Zip long known for turf sprint success at stud. Bullet workout on dirt at Palm Beach Downs April 25 among 2 published drills. Dam I’m Betty G was a multiple stakes winner on turf.

#11-INCANTO: Stonestreet Stable looks to continue its annual treks to Royal Ascot with this Irish-bred rookie who is working bullets. Jack Sisterson trains, while much of the Stonestreet-to-Ascot history came with Wesley Ward. Sire Mehmas best known to US players for exported offspring Going Global and Chez Pierre.

#12-GARDEN OF WAR: Like Classy War in this same field, trainer Mark Casse notably campaigned this colt’s sire War of Will to 2019 Preakness glory and eventually Grade 1-winning turf credentials. Back-to-back bullet workouts at Palm Meadows on dirt and turf coming into the career debut. Casse turns here to jockey Miguel Vasquez, a 21% winning combination over the past year-plus.


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Following a hugely successful first event in Cincinnati, Ohio in September 2023, the Moneymaker Tour is returning to the Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati on September 17 – 30, 2024 with a packed schedule that will guarantee more than $1 million across 15 trophy events. 

In September 2023’s inaugural stop at Hard Rock Cincinnati, the $1,500 Main Event was contested by 788 players and won by Joseph Bakun for $208,034. He was joined at the final table by Chris Moneymaker himself and WSOP Champion Joseph McKeehen and as well as the top cash prize, he also took home a crystal Moneymaker Tour trophy and a guitar trophy.

The Moneymaker Tour was created in 2023 by 2003 WSOP Champion and ACR Team Pro, Chris Moneymaker and Moneymaker Tour Executive Manager, Tony Burns. The Tour was conceived as a way for Moneymaker to give poker players opportunities to have their own ordinary to extraordinary moments as he did.

Despite its relative newcomer status, the Moneymaker Tour has made a name for itself, recently being voted the third most popular live poker tournament series behind only the World Series of Poker and the World Poker Tour, in a State of Poker survey. Since its inception, there have been eight events throughout Florida, Cincinnati and Houston.

The Tour has also recently announced new venues including a first visit to the birthplace of the Moneymaker boom with an event in Las Vegas from June 28 – July 6 at MGM Grand and its first international Main Event at Casino Aruba in October.

“Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati will team up with the Moneymaker Tour for a return in 2024” said Christopher Herbert, Hard Rock Cincinnati Manger of Poker & Sportsbook. “Hard Rock Cincinnati is grateful to be a part of the fastest growing poker tour in 2023. Chris Moneymaker, Tony Burns and their staff delivered an incredible experience for our guests during the 2023 Moneymaker Tour stop. There’s no better place to be in September 2024 than Cincinnati Ohio!”

“After an amazing series last September, we are excited to return to Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati”, said Tony Burns, Executive Manager of the Moneymaker Tour. “Continuing to partner with one of the most recognisable brands in the world amplifies our reach, resonates with our audience, and rocks our business to a whole other level.”

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Zenni Optical Announces Partnership with ESL FACEIT Group (EFG)




Zenni Optical, the world’s leading online eyewear retailer, announced a partnership with ESL FACEIT Group (EFG), the leading esports and video game entertainment company. Designed to integrate eye health education with innovative eyewear solutions for the esports community, the partnership will officially launch at DreamHack festival in Dallas, taking place from May 31 to June 2.

This collaboration will showcase a co-branded collection of lifestyle and competitive eyewear and accessories, highlighting Zenni Optical’s commitment to promoting overall eye health, particularly in addressing issues like eye fatigue and strain. Additionally, the initiative will incorporate essential eye health education across various DreamHack Festivals, in alignment with EFG’s broader mission to foster inclusive gaming worlds and engaged, supported communities.

“DreamHack and ESL represent some of the most community-centric and prestigious competitive events in the world. In their own unique ways, they embody esports for everyone. By partnering with these incredible brands across the gaming and esports spaces, we aim to create engaging experiences that combine eye-health education with innovative eyewear solutions for players and fans at all levels,” said Robb Chiarini, Head of Gaming, Sports, & Events at Zenni Optical.

“We are thrilled to partner with Zenni Optical as the Official Eyewear Partner of DreamHack and ESL. The genuine passion that Zenni has for the esports industry is a refreshing sight to see, and a major driving factor for the decision behind our partnership. Zenni’s ongoing commitment to provide eyewear for everyone mirrors our own drive to create worlds beyond gameplay for gamers everywhere,” Craig Levine, Co-CEO at EFG, said.

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Circa Sports Launches Mobile App in Kentucky




Circa Sports has expanded its operations into Kentucky with the launch of its popular mobile betting app. Debuting via a licensing agreement with ECL Corbin LLC at its Cumberland Run harness track, the brand will take the highest betting limits in the industry along with offering tight money line splits, transparent odds, exceptional customer service, and more.

Marking the fifth state for Circa Sports, the app is now available for download through partnership with the Cumberland Run property in Corbin, Kentucky. The Circa Sports Kentucky app can be downloaded and funded remotely from anywhere. Bettors will have access to transparent and fair limits, made possible with a business model of providing betting lines and odds that are more favorable for the customer.

“We are thrilled to launch Circa Sports in the great state of Kentucky. We’ve always had our sights set here as we know it is a major hub for college sports, horse racing and more. We are looking forward to providing Kentucky bettors with some of the best odds and expertise out there,” Derek Stevens, CEO of Circa Sports, said.

The Circa Sports Kentucky app was designed by players, for players. Available to patrons ages 18 and over, highlights include high betting limits, tight money line splits, transparent odds, exceptional customer service, option to browse the complete menu and live odds from anywhere at any time, and aggressive, higher-than-most betting limits for everyone – even winners.

The Circa app also includes future bets in parlays, two-sided Yes/No future betting, remote registration that can be done from anywhere on a mobile device and deposits and withdrawals that can be done through the app from anywhere.

Marc Falcone, co-owner of the ECL Corbin LLC properties, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Circa Sports to the Commonwealth as a sports-betting partner. They allow us to offer another amenity to complement our existing gaming.”

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