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West Point Ready For Grade I Weekend

September 03, 2009 · By · Share

West Point Thoroughbreds is looking forward to a great weekend of Grade I racing on both coasts. On Saturday, our salty grey Macho Again is set to take on the likes of wonder filly Rachel Alexandra in the $750,000 Woodward (gr. I) at Saratoga Racecourse. The next day, the veteran campaigner Awesome Gem will take on 11 rivals carrying the black and gold silks in the $1,000,000 Pacific Classic (gr. I) at Del Mar.

Macho Again is coming off a game second place finish in the Whitney Handicap (gr. I). Trainer Dallas Stewart believes he is poised for another big effort in the Woodward. The colt has been training extremely well at Churchill Downs. His eagerness in the mornings led Dallas and the West Point team to take a shot in the Woodward.

Terry Finley, President and CEO of West Point Thoroughbreds said, ""Facing Rachel Alexandra simply adds to the experience. We'd like to make history or be a part of it. You don't get too many chances like this as a racehorse owner, but we're always going to do the best thing for the horse. The partners are all excited. They know our colt deserves a shot."

A 4-year-old son of Macho Uno, Macho Again has recorded wins in both the Stephen Foster (gr. I) and New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) earlier this year. He also captured the Jim Dandy (gr. II) at Saratoga last year and has earned over $1.6 million from 19 career starts.

Jockey Robby Albarado will be back aboard in the Woodward.

After Awesome Gem's most recent work, trainer Craig Dollase was quoted by the Del Mar website saying, "This was one of the best works I have seen from him in a long time."  Hopefully we are looking to make it two for two in Grade I races this weekend when Awesome Gem runs in his third consecutive Pacific Classic. Two years ago he missed the victory by a narrow margin. We believe this year is his year to get the job done.

The six-year-old Awesome Again gelding is coming off a fast closing second in the Longacres Mile at Emerald Downs on August 16.  He has earnings of over $1.4 million. Awesome Gem's most notable races include a victory in the 2007 San Fernando Stakes (G2), a second in the 2009 Eddie Read Handicap (G1), and a third in the 2007 Breeder's Cup Classic (G1).

Terry Finley is very high on Awesome Gem's chances this weekend. "This horse has showed up at several of the country's biggest races. He deserves a Grade I win. He was doing so well after the Longacres Mile that we figured we have to take a shot at the Pacific Classic. I wish his partners the best of luck on Sunday."

Jockey Alex Solis will carry the black and gold colors of West Point Thoroughbreds on Sunday.

We wish the best of luck to both Macho Again and Awesome Gem this weekend. A great weekend of racing coast to coast for West Point Thoroughbreds.

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