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"Horses racing in this weekend's Arlington Million went out on the track to practice Thursday morning," Michelle Stoffel reports for TribLocal Arlington Heights.
"European and American horses will battle for the $1 million purse in the Arlington Million, the Beverly D. Stakes, and the Secretariat Stakes race. The three races together make up the Arlington International Festival. Experts are predicting a showdown between the Irish-bred Cape Blanco and the Kentucky-bred Gio Ponti, who won in 2009 and would challenge the famed John Henry's status as a two-time winner of the Arlington Million if he takes first place this year."
"You hear a lot about the big-time guys who train racehorses, about their top-level contenders and Grade 1 conquests," Claire Novak writes for ESPN.com. "You hear less often of small-time trainers; their accomplishments aren't always as frequent or as flashy. But once in a while a horse comes along to change it all, catapulting his connections to the top of the game.
"Mission Approved is that kind of runner, one who started for a $35,000 tag last June. This week, the former claimer is the 6-1 third choice on the morning line for the Grade 1 Arlington Million, a 1 1/4-mile event on the Arlington Park lawn that could lead to a start in the Breeders' Cup Turf. "
"Three-time Eclipse Award honoree Gio Ponti is on the grounds at Arlington Park for Saturday's 29th running of the Arlington Million. The 2009 Million winner came in from Saratoga for the 1 1/4-mile turf race," The Sports Network reports.
"Second in last year's Million to Debussy, the six-year-old champion is the 2-1 second choice in the morning-line behind 9-5 favorite Cape Blanco."
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