LONG FUSED CAUSEFORCOMMOTION TAKES ON MALES AT 1 ¾ MILES ON TURF IN SUNDAY’S GRADE III, $100,000 SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO STAKES

first_imgLONG FUSED CAUSEFORCOMMOTION TAKES ON MALES AT 1 ¾ MILES ON TURF IN SUNDAY’S GRADE III, $100,000 SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO STAKES YA GOTTA WANNA, OSCAR DOMINGUEZ & ACCLIMATE ALL PROMINENT AMONG FIELD OF EIGHT ARCADIA, Calif. (June 20, 2019)–In what appears to be a totally wide open fray at a mile and three quarters over Santa Anita’s storied Camino Real hillside turf course, trainer Eric Kruljac’s long fused 5-year-old mare Causeforcommotion would appear to rate a big chance versus seven male rivals in Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 San Juan Capistrano Stakes.Prominent amongst her competition in Santa Anita’s traditional closing day fixture are the Phil D’Amato-trained Ya Gotta Wanna and Acclimate, along with Irish-bred Oscar Dominguez, who is trained by Richard Baltas.CAUSEFORCOMMOTIONOwner:  E. Dunham, Eric Kruljac, Jim Reed, J. Sondereker and S. & D. YipTrainer:  Eric KruljacA runaway nine length winner of the Grade III, 1 ½ mile Santa Barbara Stakes as the 6-5 favorite two starts back on May 11, this 5-year-old Americain mare was then eighth, beaten 5 ¾ lengths at 14-1 in the Grade I Gamely Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on turf May 27.  Although this will be her first time competing with males, she’s a two-time stakes winner over the course and brings perhaps the most consistent resume to the San Juan party, evidenced by her overall mark of 17-4-5-3 and top bankroll of $264,261.  In what will be her fourth start of the year, she retains the services of Geovanni Franco, who guided her to victories in the Santa Barbara and in last year’s ungraded Possibly Perfect Stakes.YA GOTTA WANNAOwner:  Mersad Metanovic Bloodstock, LLC, Michael House & Aaron SonesTrainer:  Phil D’AmatoA fast finishing sixth, beaten just 1 ½ lengths in the Grade II, 1 ¼ mile Charles Whittingham Stakes on May 25, this 5-year-old Proud Citizen gelding could pick up the pieces if the San Juan pace is hot early. Winless in his last 10 starts, he’s been close on occasion and has kept good company. D’Amato will look to Norberto Arroyo Jr. for the first time with Ya Gotta Wanna, who seeks his first win in career start number 18.OSCAR DOMINGUEZOwner:  Nancy Messineo & Bruce SandsTrainer:  Richard BaltasA 6-year-old Irish-bred gelding by Zoffany, he’s another that would benefit from a fast early pace, as he flew late to win a second condition allowance going 1 1/8 miles on turf here on May 25 by a head under leading man Flavien Prat, who rides back on Sunday.  Popular at the claim box, he’s been haltered for $40,000 five times dating back to January, 2018, and was most recently claimed three starts back on Feb. 7. A winner going 1 ¼ miles on turf, he, like the rest of the field will be trying the demanding San Juan distance for the first time. With an overall mark of 33-5-4-4, he has earnings of $225,630.ACCLIMATEOwner:  The Ellwood Johnston Trust & Timmy Time RacingTrainer:  Phil D’AmatoA maiden $20,000 claiming winner Los Alamitos 10 starts back on Sept. 7, 2018, this 5-year-old California-bred gelding by multiple Eclipse Champion turf star Acclamation is a horse on the improve, evidenced by his 3 ¼ length gate to wire victory going 1 1/8 miles on turf here in a starter allowance on May 31. In a race that has seen many front-running victors over its long and storied history, Acclimate is a sharp horse with speed and is thus very dangerous stretching out to a mile and three quarters in what will be his first stakes assignment.THE GRADE III SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDERRace 8 of 10 Approximate post time 4:30 p.m. PTMongolian Groom–Mario Gutierrez–121Ground Attack–Tiago Pereira–121Ya Gotta Wanna–Norberto Arroyo, Jr.–121Acclimate–Martin Garcia–121Original Intent–Ruben Fuentes–121Causeforcommotion–Geovanni Franco–121Red King–Aaron Gryder–121Oscar Dominguez–Flavien Prat–121First post time on closing day, Sunday, is at 1 p.m., with admission gates opening at 11 a.m. For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.last_img read more

National Football Stadium nearly ready

first_imgConstruction of the NFS, formerly known as the Lloyd Robson Oval, is nearing completion with the stadium to be fully functional in February next year.Oil Search managing director and chairman of the Lloyd Robson Oval Trustee Limited, Peter Botten said the NFS is being completed to world class standards that will meet FIFA requirements.“A FIFA delegation visited the venue recently and was impressed with the design and quality of the facility. They have advised a list of requirements to meet all their standards and these have been incorporated into the stadium construction and design,” said Botten.He said that the NFS had been constructed to comply with National Rugby League (NRL) guidelines and governing codes that allow NRL games to be played at the stadium. He explained the design of the stadium presently allows for seating of up to 15,000 spectators, taking designs from the successful developments at the Gold Coast Cbus stadium and AMI stadium in New Zealand. “Facilities meet all modern player requirements, that include state-of-the-art indoor warm up and recovery areas, gym facilities, change rooms for home and away teams, for curtain raiser matches, referees rooms, ball boys change rooms, drug testing rooms and match day medical rooms. “The field of play lighting is world-class, meeting international broadcast standards. There is also an adjacent training and warm up field,” said Botten.last_img read more

“I would like to return to Madrid and compete for number one …”

first_imgIf you return to Madrid, will have Thibaut Courtois ahead who, after a start shrouded in doubts, has settled in the Madrid goal and has already worn the hero cape in more than one match. Lunin confessed his admiration for the Belgian: “He has a level. It is very clear. Without good qualities, he would not play for Real Madrid. I like many things about him. But for example, one is that it has height, almost two meters. A little like me (measures 1.91), although a little more. And I like how he uses it, you know? With flat balls. In short, to not explain much to you, I like how he uses his height in goal.His signing in 2018Lunin officially became a Real Madrid goalkeeper on June 22, 2018. The Chamartín club paid 8.5 million to FC Zorya Luhansk. The agreement was part of this new white policy for attracting young talent to shield the future. This is how the Ukrainian, in Real Madridista, relates how his transfer was conceived: “First is what the club director, the director of my club in Ukraine, told me, who told me that Real Madrid was interested in me and wanted to sign me. When I heard it … I felt different sensations. I was happy and a little worried because it’s a great level, you know? But it is a dream, a child’s dream and I was happy, very happy. And I said that of course I was and that I was not interested in other options. And what happened next … I arrived in Madrid, I spoke with the club, with the coaches, directors, with the president, I did the medical examination and we signed the contract. He had two or three incredible days to live. The first days I lived in Valdebebas, the rooms were very comfortable and very cozy, there is everything for work, for development. There is everything for everything. I also remember my first game at the Santiago Bernabéu, I played 20 minutes, I think. An impressive atmosphere, people squeeze us a lot and support us a lot. The stadium, I repeat, the atmosphere, everything, everything incredible. This feeling of playing with the best players in the world is impressive. A show (laughs) ”. A show that Lunin wants to live in a future week after week although, at the moment, he does not know where the next season will be. Real Madrid is still waiting for Andriy Lunin (21 years old) although the latter does not lose hope of one day succeeding under the sticks of the Santiago Bernabéu. “Of course I see myself as a Real Madrid goalkeeper. If I did not see it, there is no sense in coming to Madrid. It wouldn’t make sense to come to this club. I see it, I do my best to achieve this goal. When, I don’t know. And when this moment comes, I am convinced that it will be one of the best moments of my life, even the best ”, the Ukrainian goalkeeper has told Real Madridista magazine.With Lunin the plans outlined at first by Real Madrid were not fulfilled. Recorded in 2018 as a great goalkeeper project for 8.5 million, he yielded to Leganés to take flight in First but was a substitute for Cuéllar and only played seven games in which he received seven goals. The white club made another loan attempt so that its player continued cooking in Spain, but the recipe was cut. With the Gold Glove title of the last U-20 World Cup under his arm, Madrid yielded him again. ANDn this second time he went to Valladolid but he broke the deal in the past winter market because he did not play (he only participated 210 minutes in the Copa del Rey) and what is not wanted in Concha Espina is that the projection of one of the most promising young goalkeepers in Europe is cut off ( “Why they didn’t trust me is a question that is not for me, it is for the Valladolid coaches”). So they went back to find a team to go on loan: Oviedo, in the Second Division, where they are playing regularly: nine games and the starting nine (they scored 10 goals). But now it has once again suffered a slowdown due to this breakdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Will Lunin be part of Real Madrid next season? The Ukrainian confesses not knowing what will become of him: “I don’t know. I really don’t know now. We’ll see. Of course I would like to return to Madrid and compete for the number 1. But we will see a little later what the coach considers and what will happen with this quarantine situation, which I hope all goes well ”.last_img read more

Klopp backs Liverpool for Premier League miracle

first_img0Shares0000Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool have not given up hope of winning the Premier League © AFP/File / Paul ELLISLIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, May 11 – Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool’s astonishing European fightback proves his side will not give up hope of winning the Premier League until Manchester City have the trophy in their hands on Sunday.Klopp’s team staged arguably the greatest comeback in Champions League history on Tuesday when they thrashed Barcelona 4-0 to overturn a 3-0 semi-final first-leg deficit. With an all-English Champions League final against Tottenham set for June 1, Liverpool can pour all their energy into one last push to win their first English title since 1990.The Reds are one point behind leaders Manchester City heading into their final game of the season against Wolves at Anfield.Liverpool mounted an astonishing comeback against Barcelona to reach the Champions League final © AFP/File / Paul ELLISCity will retain the title if they win at Brighton but a draw or loss for Pep Guardiola’s men would open the door for Liverpool to be crowned champions if they defeat Wolves.Given Brighton’s lowly position, the odds are firmly on a City coronation, but Liverpool boss Klopp says this week’s astonishing Champions League drama showed anything can happen when the pressure mounts.Not only did Liverpool author a fightback for the ages, but Tottenham scored three times in their semi-final against Ajax to go through on away goals after trailing 3-0 on aggregate with just 35 minutes left.“It’s been a week of big football moments. But from our point of view it could be a big football moment on the weekend — the week is not over yet,” Klopp said.“I think at the start of the week most people expected me to be sitting here and saying ‘OK, after not being in the Champions League final, it’s difficult to be champions’. Well now we are in the final and it is still difficult.Liverpool are chasing their first English top-flight title since 1990 © AFP/File / GEOFF CADDICK“We are not used to moments of glory but we win from time to time. Focus is not a problem. The only thing we can do is win this game.”In virtually any other season, Liverpool, who have 94 points and have lost only once in the league, would have been champions by now.Having secured successive Champions League final appearances, the sting of failure will not be quite so sharp if Liverpool do not get a helping hand from Brighton this weekend.But do not tell that to Klopp and his players.Reflecting the togetherness and desire fuelling their remarkable season, Klopp revealed Mohamed Salah, Andy Robertson and Jordan Henderson will all play through the pain barrier against Wolves.– ‘It’s only pain’ –Salah missed the Barcelona game with a concussion, while Henderson (knee) and Robertson (calf) both suffered injuries in that match.“The famous three words of this week in the dressing room is ‘It’s only pain’. Very important for all the young lads to learn,” Klopp said.Liverpool fans will be glued to their phones for updates from Brighton as the drama unfolds on Sunday, but Klopp just wants his team to focus on Wolves.“Maybe our supporters shouldn’t celebrate the result before it’s 3-0 for Brighton and 87 or 88 minutes played, all the rest is only information, nothing else,” Klopp said.The manager is still waiting for the first trophy of his four-year Liverpool reign, but that pales into comparison with his club’s nearly three-decade title drought.When Liverpool last won the league, it was their 10th title in 15 years — a period of dominance that came to an unexpected end when Kenny Dalglish resigned as manager in February 1991.In the barren years since then, Liverpool have finished second four times, most famously falling just short when Steven Gerrard’s slip in a defeat against Chelsea allowed City to sneak past them in 2014.While Liverpool have a special relationship with the European Cup, which they have won five times, this is a club raised on legendary boss Bill Shankly’s demand that “the league is our bread and butter, that’s the one I want”.Winning their 19th title would spark delirous celebrations across Merseyside and, after what he has witnessed this week, Klopp senses one last miracle could be on the cards.“Both teams have to win their games. That’s not sure (to happen) in the moment, so we have to focus on that,” he said.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

DONEGAL GETS ITS FIRST WHISKEY IN 170 YEARS AS SLIABH LIAG DISTILLERY TO OPEN

first_imgDONEGAL is getting its first distillery since the 1850s – and the first whiskey will be launched tonight close to Sliabh Liag from where it takes its name.Sliabh Liag Distillery is a new Irish whiskey company driven by two returning Donegal emigrants.James Doherty and Margaret Cunningham separately returned from the diaspora and in 2015 joined forces to reclaim the lost distilling heritage of Donegal. They are going to build the first distillery in Donegal for more than 170 years on the landward slopes of the majestic Sliabh Liag sea cliffs.All the brands from the distillery will be inspired by local lore and legend, very much rooted in the Donegal Gaeltacht, and tonight in John the Miner’s bar in Carrick they will be introducing their first brand: The Silkie, blended Irish whiskey.The Silkie seals (sometimes Selkies) of Donegal were legendary shape-shifters who could transform to beautiful sea-maidens with long dark hair, deep soulful brown eyes and enchanting voices that would beguile almost any man.Inspired by these legends the team sourced an Irish whiskey that is rich in character, yet fresh, with exceptional smoothness and a rounded elegance and now are now proud to be bringing The Silkie to market. “It is really important to us that everything we do reflects where we come form and is rooted in the stories of the Donegal Gaeltacht. We want to be considered modern Seanachaí, custodians of the traditions of the area, and writing a new and dynamic history” says Cunningham.“I have always loved the rich folk tales of the area, and believe that the legends of the Silkie seals would allow us to design a confident modern approach to Irish whiskey, and I think we have achieved that with The Silkie” says Doherty who continued “while we are keen to succeed in Ireland and Donegal in particular, we see the major opportunity in overseas markets and will be using our existing contacts to establish The Silkie ahead of our other brands”Presented in an elegant bottle with labelling that reflects the rich colours of the wild Atlantic around Donegal, it is sealed with a classic cork stopper and carries the signature of Cunningham in her native Irish; a confident reflection of the Gaeltacht in 2016.The Silkie blended Irish whiskey, has an ABV of 40% and a suggested retail price of Euro 34.99 for a 70 cl bottle.If you’re in to whiskey, here’s some Tasting Notes:Colour : Straw gold, hints of amberNose: Fresh and malty, brisk like green apples, opens to be more honeyed with a gentle butterynessTaste: Honey to the fore, bright, hints of orange zest, digestive biscuits, brioche, butterscotch and stem gingerFinish The finish is warming, elegant and gently melts away. DONEGAL GETS ITS FIRST WHISKEY IN 170 YEARS AS SLIABH LIAG DISTILLERY TO OPEN was last modified: January 28th, 2016 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:CarrickdonegalOPENSliabh Liag Distillerywhiskeylast_img read more

LADIES FOOTBALL: DONEGAL CLUBS COMPETE AT DERRY U-12 BLITZ

first_imgGirls from the St Eunan’s and Buncrana U-12 squadsTHE Steelstown Brian Ogs GAA club in Derry hosted a very successful U-12 girls blitz on Sunday to finish off a great season with two Donegal teams taking part.The hosts fielded two teams – as Steelstown and Brian Ogs – and played a number of games against clubs visiting from St Eunan’s GAA club Letterkenny, Buncrana GAA club and Claudy GAA club.The Derry City club were once again superb hosts throughout the day and girls from each time competed well with some excellent performances throughout all the teams. Hosts Brian Ogs with the Eunan’s teamsLADIES FOOTBALL: DONEGAL CLUBS COMPETE AT DERRY U-12 BLITZ was last modified: October 20th, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:buncranaLADIES FOOTBALL: DONEGAL CLUBS COMPETE AT DERRY U-12 BLITZSt Eunanslast_img read more

MAN JAILED FOR STEALING CREDIT CARD RECEIPTS FROM DONEGAL GARAGE

first_imgA man who stole €880 worth of credit card receipts from a cash register at a Co Donegal service station has been jailed for three months.Kernan’s Eurospar in NewtowncunninghamGerard McDonagh was at large after escaping from Castlerea Prison when he committed the crime on June 20th last. McDonagh, 32, of no fixed abode, entered Kernan’s EuroSpar Service and Diner in  Newtowncunningham and reached over a counter and grabbed the receipts.He was later arrested by Gardai who viewed CCTV footage of the incident.Letterkenny District Court heard today how McDonagh had been sleeping rough after escaping from Castlerea Prison.Solicitor Paudge Dorrian said the receipts were useless to his client.However Garda Inspector David Kelly said the issue was that credit card numbers were still contained on the receipts.The court heard that McDonagh, of no fixed abode, had precious convictions for road traffic offences.He was due to be released from prison by now but had another sentence added to his term for escaping prison and was now due for release on December 10th.Judge Paul Kelly sentenced McDonagh to three months in prison to start from that date (Dec 10th) after finding him guilty under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice and Fraud Act.MAN JAILED FOR STEALING CREDIT CARD RECEIPTS FROM DONEGAL GARAGE was last modified: June 28th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:GardaiGerard McDonaghkernans eurosparmanorcunninghamlast_img read more

McHUGH WELCOMES MULTI-BILLION EURO WINDFALL FOR FARMERS

first_imgDeputy Joe McHughDONEGAL Deputy Joe McHugh has welcomed a multi-billion euro in payments to farmers.Minister Simon Coveney announced tonight €12.5 Billion in support for the Agricultural sector, sanctioned through the Irish Government and the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Pillar II Funding programme “I welcome today’s announcement by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Simon Coveney, T.D., that €12.5Billion of funds will be sanctioned through the Irish Government and the CAP’s Pillar II programme,” said Deputy McHugh. “With approximately 85% of produce from Irish farms being exported, it was imperative that our allocation was in line with these requirements in order to maintain and sustain our farming sector.“Over the Christmas period, I was in regular contact with both large and small farmers, and in particular the suckler and beef famers, who are experiencing serious challenges at the moment and need considerable encouragement and support over the coming months. But one thing that all farmers have in common across the sector is a clear and consistent message – distribute the money to farmers and they will spend it!“I have been working closely with Minister Coveney over the past year to ensure a fair distribution of funds are sanctioned for Pillar II and I am grateful to the Minister for all the hard work that has been involved in securing this funding.“I particularly welcome the focus on encouraging young farmers to participate in the agriculture sector, as per the following provisions: the full 2% of the national ceiling will be allocated to young farmers, providing for a 25% ‘top-up’ on direct payments on up to 50 hectares for farmers under 40 years of age (worth more than €16,000 over the period where payment is made on the maximum area for the full five years of the scheme); educational criteria will ensure payments are made to genuine young farmers; young farmers will be prioritised in the allocation of payment entitlements from the national reserve. “The funding includes €1.9 billion in national funding and €2.2 billion of EU funding, including €8.5 billion in EU money, which will be distributed in direct payments to farmers, and also includes around €4 billion allotted for the Rural Development Programme until 2020.” McHUGH WELCOMES MULTI-BILLION EURO WINDFALL FOR FARMERS was last modified: January 14th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:agriculturebillions of euroJoe McHughwindfalllast_img read more

MCBREARTY – “CANDIDATES RECENT SHOW OF CONCERN OVER POLICING ‘OPPORTUNISTIC’

first_imgIndependent Councillor for the Stranorlar Electoral Area Cllr Frank McBrearty, has today criticised recent remarks made by some election candidates concerning justice and policing as both ‘strategic and opportunistic’. The Independent Councillor made the comments after it emerged that a number of election candidates have, this week, publicly voiced concern over the current crisis in both An Garda Síochána and the Department of Justice.This comes in the wake of the publication of the Guerin Report, as well as the resignation of former Justice Minister, Alan Shatter. McBrearty told Donegal Daily, “It’s ironic, what with elections only around the corner, that some election candidates now feel the need to come out publicly about the apparent concerns they have with regards to the current situation which exists among Gardaí and the justice system in this country.“I can’t understand where they were up until this point!“The fact that they have decided to come out now and highlight the issues within our justice system yet have – up until this point – been deafly silent over these issues, only highlights the strategic and opportunistic nature with which these comments were made.Referring to his own struggle against Garda corruption and injustice, Cllr McBrearty said that as far as matters pertaining to malpractice and shortcomings within the Irish justice system were concerned, no one has been as outspoken and unyielding in their pursuit of calling for the immediate overhauling of justice in the state than himself. He continued by saying that now, with elections only days away, the fact that election candidates suddenly feel compelled to highlight this issue is simply self-serving and deeply insensitive to those whom –like he and his family –have personally suffered as a result of these failures within the justice system.“I’ve been calling for radical reforms within the justice system in Ireland for years, everyone knows this. My family and I, as well as numerous other people in this country, have profoundly suffered as a result of thesesystemic failures and deficiencies – that is wrong.“What’s also wrong is that now, coming up to election time, certain candidates have chosen to monopolies on these various scandals and miscarriages of justice, in which decent people have been implicated, simply for their own political gain – have these people no moral compass?Councillor McBrearty went on to say that the findings of the Guerin Report, which was published last week, has further highlighted the many inadequacies which currently exist within the Irish justice system.The Councillor also said that the rights of every Irish citizen must now be protected and that these rights must be central to any reforms which are carried out. McBrearty concluded, “The current Justice system is clearly broken and this is evident from the multitude of scandals which have been exposed dating back to the 1970s.“After the conclusion of the Morris tribunal in 2008 we were promised radical reforms – nearly five years later, these reforms have still to happen.“We as a nation need to be reassured that the radical reforms needed are implemented, this is to ensure that the scales of Justice are once again evenly balanced, and that all rights of Irish people are protected under a new and modern Justice system.MCBREARTY – “CANDIDATES RECENT SHOW OF CONCERN OVER POLICING ‘OPPORTUNISTIC’ was last modified: May 15th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Election 2014:Frank McBreartynewsPoliticslast_img read more

Laser defense tests quite encouraging

first_imgEDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE – After a year of ground tests, a laser weapon is approaching performance levels capable of destroying an enemy missile in flight, defense officials said. If the military can get the weapon to work well enough for service, it will be installed into a highly modified Boeing 747-400 freighter. The laser would then be tested against actual missiles. “Our goal is shoot down a boosting ballistic missile over the Pacific Ocean in late 2008,” said Air Force Col. John Daniels, program director. “The missile will be launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base into the Pacific Test Range, where we will engage it.” The Missile Defense Agency’s Airborne Laser program is testing its chemical oxygen iodine laser at a laboratory at Edwards. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week “The goal, which we hope to achieve by the end of 2005, is to consistently reach long-duration, full-power firing,” Daniels said. “I can’t give you exact figures, but it will be sufficient to destroy a missile from hundreds of miles away.” Program officials envision future Airborne Laser aircraft patrolling in pairs at more than 40,000 feet and inside friendly territory, scanning the horizon for missiles. When a missile is detected, a set of lasers will track and illuminate it, and computers will measure the distance and calculate its course and direction. A second high-energy laser, fired in a three- to five-second burst through the nose turret mounted on the 747, will destroy the missile. The laser is comprised of six modules, each weighing 4,500 pounds and about the size of a sport utility vehicle turned on its end. The beam will heat an area about the diameter of a basketball on the missile’s relatively fragile fuel-tank casing. The laser will weaken metal already under high pressure from the ignited rocket fuel. The aircraft that will carry the test laser completed a series of flight tests at Edwards in July and is now in Wichita, Kan., undergoing modifications to its aft section to prepare it for the installation. The beginning of the laser installation is more than a year away, since the modules have to be dismantled and removed from the laboratory at Edwards. The illuminator lasers also are being installed in Wichita. Those lasers will be tested on the ground and in the air before the aircraft returns to Edwards, Daniels said. “In 2008 we will be flight testing the entire weapon system,” Daniels said. Jim Skeen, (661) 267-5743 james.skeen@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more