The late Emmy Award-winning producer Danny Arnold couldn’t have come up with a better script for his wife’s homebred colt Turallure than what transpired in the Ricoh Woodbine Mile Stakes (Can-IT) Sept. 18. Racing for Donna Arnold’s Four D Stable, Turallure captured the seven-figure stakes to secure a starting berth in the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) at Churchill Downs Nov. 5 and a chance to take on mighty three-time Mile winner Goldikova.
The Woodbine Mile was Donna Arnold’s biggest career win.
“It was so thrilling that I couldn’t get over it,” said Arnold, who screamed herself hoarse during the race.
Watching Turallure run was a new experience for Arnold, who hadn’t seen any of the colt’s previous 14 races in person. After Turallure won the Bernard Baruch Handicap (gr. IIT) at Saratoga in August, the Los Angeles native figured she was missing too much of a good thing and decided to start watching his races in person.
“I had watched them on television or on the computer because I didn’t want to bring him bad luck,” she joked.
Arnold, who first went to the track as a youngster with her family, became a racing fan after attending the races with her husband.
“Danny really enjoyed the races because it got him away from business,” Arnold said. “It was a break from the writing, directing, and producing.”
The Arnolds met on the “Tennessee Ernie Ford Show.” “Danny was a writer at the time, and I was a singer and dancer in the show’s ‘The Top 20’ for four years,” Arnold said.
She also found time to perform in an ice show in Las Vegas. “I was one of the few who auditioned who could skate,” Arnold said.
Danny Arnold, who died in 1995, included among his Hollywood friends the comedy team of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. He was involved with the production of such popular television shows as “Bewitched,” starring Elizabeth Montgomery, plus “My World and Welcome to It,” “Barney Miller,” and “That Girl.”
“Before they started shooting ‘Bewitched,’ Elizabeth was pregnant with her first child and I was pregnant with my second,” Arnold said. “We had our sons a day apart.”
Danny Arnold chose the name Four D Stables to honor his family. The Arnolds’ two sons are David and Dannel.
Four D’s first big horse was Turallure’s great-granddam Parioli, who did all her racing in Europe and won six French group III stakes in the mid-1980s. The daughter of Bold Bidder twice was group I-placed.
“We decided to send Parioli to Europe because we thought that would be a good thing to do for her,” Arnold said. “We went to see her every summer.”
Parioli has turned out to be the family’s foundation mare.
“Every horse I have today has come from her,” said Arnold, who planned the mating that produced Turallure. She sent the Wekiva Springs mare Personal Allure to Canadian Horse of the Year and Triple Crown winner Wando, who at the time was standing for $10,000 at William S. Farish’s Lane’s End Farm near Versailles, Ky. Wando currently stands at Gustav Schickedanz’ Schonberg Farm near Schonberg, Ontario, Canada.
“In looking through the book (The Blood-Horse Stallion Register), Wando seemed like a nice stallion,” Arnold said. “He had done everything well and was nice-looking and correct. I’m not one of those who like to go to a big star because the stud fee gets a little out of hand.”
Turallure was foaled at Robin Scully’s Clovelly Farms near Lexington, where the Arnold family has boarded horses for 30 years.
“I love it there at the farm,” Arnold said. “We try to come at least once a year and we stay at the farm. I came this year before Easter with my daughter-in-law and her children and visited places like Keeneland.”
“She’s a lady by every stretch of the imagination,” said Clovelly office manager Carrie Bridges. “She takes the good news wonderfully and handles the bad news well. She’s a delight to work with.”
Kentucky trainer Charles Lopresti has trained for Arnold for about a dozen years. “He’s a very nice man, and he cares about his horses and takes good care of them,” Arnold said. “He has his own farm near Lexington.”
“Turallure is such a sweet horse,” she added. “You see a lot of horses come back after a race, and they’re kicking and flighty. He comes back like, ‘OK, whatever it was that I did, let’s go out and eat and relax.’ That’s what he does; he eats and relaxes.”
And wins big.