Wednesday, November 14, 2001
Williams News tries to save his year
By David Grening
Daily Racing Form
JAMAICA, N.Y. -- Two years after nearly winning the Red Smith Handicap, Williams
News will give it another try on Saturday at Aqueduct. The Red Smith, the final turf
stakes of the year in New York, is a Grade 2 race run at 12 furlongs and carries a
purse of $150,000.
In the 1999 Red Smith, Williams News made the lead in midstretch only to pull
himself up, according to his trainer, Tom Amoss. That allowed Monarch's Maze to
get past him and win by a length. It's a race Amoss recalls well.
"Jerry Bailey rode him and it was Jerry's first and only time on him," Amoss said
Tuesday from Kentucky. "He made the lead, and he's the type if he makes the
lead too early he will pull himself up. We were two lengths in front inside the eighth
pole and he pulled himself up."
The Red Smith typified the type of career Williams News has had: 10 second-place
finishes, six wins. He owns victories in the Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup
Handicap and the Elkhorn Stakes, a pair of Grade 3 races. A victory Saturday would
put the 6-year-old gelding over $1 million in earnings for the On Target Racing
Stable of Emil, Nicole, and Rosalie Cerullo.
After a solid 2000 campaign and a victory in the Elkhorn in April, Amoss had high
hopes for Williams News this year. But Williams News has lost his last four races,
including the Canadian International, in which he finished 11th. Amoss believes
that race wasn't as bad as it looks on paper.
Amoss enters Saturday's Red Smith more hopeful than confident, and said that a
victory by Williams News would "salvage the year" for the horse.
"It would make for a good year rather than a mediocre year," he said.
A victory would also make for a nice birthday present for Amoss, who turns 40 on
Saturday. He will mark the occasion with family and friends in his native New
Orleans and will watch the race on television.
Edgar Prado will ride Williams News in the Red Smith. Prado has never ridden the
horse, but has worked him. Williams News and last year's winner, Cetewayo, will
each carry high weight of 117 pounds.
Also expected to run are: Gritty Sandie (116), Franbulo (115), Mr. Pleasentfar
(115), Eltawaasul (114), Lodge Hill (114), Cetrantee (113), Just Listen (113), Man
From Wicklow (113), Regal Dynasty (113), Serazzo (113), Esperence (112), and