Friday, February 23, 2007 12:00 AM
FLORENCE, KY . . . February 23, 2007 . . . The 36th running of the Lane's End Stakes has drawn 166 nominations, the most since Lane's End began sponsoring the race in 2002. The $500,000 Lane's End, a Grade II prep for the Kentucky Derby, is scheduled to run at Turfway Park on Saturday, March 24.
The nominations represent stables from across the country, including the California operations of Bob Baffert, Richard Mandella, and Doug O'Neill; Kentucky-based trainers such as Dale Romans, Ken McPeek, and Frank Brothers who are currently wintering in Florida, and the multi-state operation of Steve Asmussen.
The national powerhouse stable of Todd Pletcher leads the list with 21 nominations. Among them are Any Given Saturday, owned by WinStar Farm; Circular Quay, owned by Doreen and Michael Tabor; Ravel, owned by Tabor and Derrick Smith; and Scat Daddy, owned by Tabor and James Scatuorchio. Pletcher won the 2005 running of the Lane's End Stakes with Flower Alley and the 2001 running with Balto Star.
Patrick Biancone, who maintains a stable at Turfway, adds six to the list, including Time Squared for Fab Oak Stable, et. al., and Belgravia for Tabor, Smith, Mrs. John Magnier, and Zayat Stables.
D. Wayne Lukas has nominated five, including Flying First Class, who finished second at odds of 20-1 in his debut last fall at Turfway. Lukas trained the only filly to win this race, Serena's Song in 1995, and also won the 1983 edition with Marfa.
Among nominations with recent Turfway wins are U D Ghetto, winner of the 2006 Kentucky Cup Juvenile (G3) for trainer Tony Reinstedler; Carnacks Choice, who won the Turfway Prevue for trainer Greg Foley; and Joe Got Even, who won the WEBN Stakes for trainer Phil Sims. The Prevue and the WEBN are Turfway preps for the Lane's End. The third prep, the John A. Battaglia Memorial, is set for March 3.
All horses nominated to the Lane's End Stakes are automatically also nominated to the Battaglia Memorial as well as to the Rushaway Stakes and the Hansel Stakes on the Lane's End undercard.