Arlington Million Stakes on the Horizon
Taking place on August 16 at Arlington Park, the Arlington Million Stakes is a prestigious event in its own right, as well as being a springboard for the winner to compete in the Breeders’ Cup Turf – an event carrying a purse of $3 million and attracting equine athletes from far and wide. It was recently announced that both the 2013 Irish Derby winner, Trading Leather, and 2013 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner, Magician, will be travelling across the Atlantic to compete in the Arlington Million Stakes.
Foaled on March 20, 1010, Trading Leather is an Irish Thoroughbred racehorse trained by Jim Bolger. Sired by Teofilo, with Galileo as his grandsire, Trading Leather had a measure of success in his two-year-old season, with the highlight of his season being his victory at the 148th running of the Irish Derby over 1 ½ miles. Trading Leather was sold to Godolphin Racing prior to the beginning of the 2014 season, with Bolger continuing as his trainer. Starting as the 4-6 favorite for Newmarket's Jockey Club Stakes on May 3, Trading Leather finished in third place, later going on to finish in second place in the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park Racecourse, and in fifth place at the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.
Foaled on April 24, 2010, Irish Thoroughbred racehorse, Magician, has Galileo as his sire and Sadler's Wells as his grandsire. Magician found his feet in 2013 – his three-year-old season – with one of the highlights being his Breeders' Cup Turf win at Santa Anita Park on November 2. At the Cartier Racing Awards he was voted Champion Three-Year-Old Colt. His first, and only, win of the 2014 season was the Mooresbridge Stakes at the Curragh Racecourse on May 5.
Open to Thoroughbred horses aged three-years and upward, the Arlington Million is a Grade 1 flat race held at Arlington Park in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Inaugurated in 1981, and run over a distance of 1 ¼ miles on turf, the event was the first in its class to offer a $1 million purse. Currently, the winner of the Arlington Million automatically qualifies to compete in the Breeders' Cup Turf. Ridden by legendary jockey, Willie Shoemaker, John Henry won the first event on August 30, 1981, and repeated his performance in 1984 with Chris McCarron as jockey. The time record of 1:58.69 was set by Awad in 1995.