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Wednesday, February 28, 2007



PIPERS THUNDER, who won last year’s Plate Trial Stakes in only his 3rd career start, finished 6th in the Plate and then a troubled 3rd (placed 2nd) in the Prince of Wales, makes his first start since July in the 8th race at Gulfstream today.
The Chiefswood Farm homebred by Thunder Gulch – Lone Piper, by Dehere will be ridden by Rene Douglas and the colt is 10 to 1 in the morning line odds in the one-mile dirt race.


Trainers can’t enter horses and now racehorses have to have clean tests before they are entered. The Ontario Racing Commission furious crackdown on cheating standardbred horsepeople continues:

"Woodbine Entertainment Group fully supports the ORC and has taken steps to protect the integrity of our racing product. Trainers Anthony Montini, Jeff Gillis, Anthony Haughan, Kevin O'Reilly and Rick Zeron will not be allowed to participate at WEG until such time as their issues are resolved with the ORC.
"Further, horses that were trained by those individuals will not be allowed to enter to race at Woodbine for a minimum period of 30 days after which a review will be held. This same applies to horses transferred to other trainers. It is Woodbine Entertainment Group's duty to protect the interests of our customers and racing participants."
Courtesy Of Woodbine Entertainment


Get those horse chores donw and turn on Dubai Racing on HPI TV tomorrow morning!

10:45 The Bahri Al Bastikiya – Darley Stud’s Five Star Day colt DAY PASS, who was so impressive winning his maiden and the Nashua Stakes last year, tries for a spot in the UAE Derby in this ‘about’ 1 1/8 mile event.

11:15 (Race 4) Eclipse Award winning sprinter THOR’S ECHO, winner of the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, is in the ‘Al Simaal’ at ‘about’ 6 furlongs, a straightaway. Interesting entrant in the race is TERRIFIC CHALLENGE, who last start was at Woodbine in the Nearctic Stakes on Canadian International day last October. Terrific Challenge is an American-bred by Royal Academy. He also raced at Woodbine last April when beaten a head by Dave the Knave under the care of Mike Doyle.

12:15 – There is nothing hush-hush about DISCREET CAT (Forestry – Pretty Discreet), who has never been beaten and has looked stunning in his races. He’s 6 for 6 and his last 3 Beyer Figures from his North American starts are 116 from the Cigar Mile, 115 from the Jerome ‘Cap and 112 from an allowance/optional claiming. This race is the ‘about’ 1 mile Birj Nahaar, usually a prep for the Goldolphin Mile but the Cat's prep for the Dubai World Cup.

Race 8 is the final event of the evening and the Maktoum Challenge, the local prep for the Mar. 31 Dubai World Cup. Former California handicap horse CHOCTAW NATION is in the field.

All the info on the races is on (click on Next racecards).


The first reported foal by Canadian Triple Crown winner and Horse of the Year WANDO was born last week at Gus Schickedanz’s Schonberg Farm in Schomberg. The chestnut filly is out of stakes winner SILENT COURSE.


Gardiner Farms-bred RUNAWAY GROOM, one of Canada’s most accomplished thoroughbreds has been retired from stud duty after siring over 1,000 foals of racing age, 674 winners, 70 stakes winners and the earners of over $53 million.
Runaway Groom is best known for his stunning upset in the 1982 Travers Stakes at Saratoga when he charged past Kentucky Derby winner Gate del Sol, Preakness winner Aloma’s Rulers and Belmont Stakes winner Conquistador Cielo.
The grey son of Blushing Groom – Yonnie Girl also won two-thirds of the Canadian Triple Crown – the Prince of Wales and Breeders’ Stakes – and probably should have won the whole series. The colt was 2nd in the Queen’s Plate behind the lone-speed runner, Son of Briartic.
Runaway Groom is the sire dirt horses and grassers including top class runners Cherokee Run, Najran, Down the Aisle and Wekiva Springs. He stood at Vinery in Lexington since 1991.


  • At 1:36 PM, Blogger Kennedy said…

    Love the new layout Jen.

    The shot of Woodbine in your header makes me homesick for Toronto.

  • At 1:38 PM, Blogger Kennedy said…

    By the way Pipers Thunder is out of the 8th. Looks like Barbican is well spotted.

  • At 3:39 PM, Blogger Milhouse said…


    Barbican was my Derby horse until he got hurt last year. I think he has a world of talent. We'll see how he does today.


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Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Welcome to the new layout of Jen's THOROUGHBLOG and thank you to my friends at THOROUGHBRED BLOGGERS ALLIANCE, John and Patrick, for already commenting on the site (see their comments below).
The TBA is a group of racing fans all over the world with Blogs about racing and each one is unique and interesting. John is a whiz with the video stuff and today, he sent me a link from YOUTUBE of BUFFALO MAN.

Hi Jen

I was wandering through Youtube and I happened upon
this; I thought you might enjoy it.

As a refresher for those who are new to 'Blogs' (short form for Web Log), this is a site where I try to give some news and views but comments/e-mails are encouraged. To send a comment (and you can do it anonymously if you wish), just click on the Post a Comment button and follow the instructions, it's not too hard!
I have started a personal Hot Canadian-bred list for horses who have raced this year, the list is based on my opinions as far as Beyer Figures, class, etc.
Previous Posts are, well, previous posts. Blogger friend John (Not to the Swift) has started a fun Blog site for Kentucky Derby hopeful BIRDBIRDISTHEWORD.
The Links list is self-explanatory and the first link will lead you to Woodbine's Microsite for the Queen's Plate. The Top Ten Plate hopefuls list is submitted by Thoroughblog.
My brother (who designed this Blog and pushed me to do it in the first place) has 2 cool products he has invented, really easy downloads: the PHOTOCAFE takes all your pix in your hard drive and displays them one at a time in a screensaver format. Very cool.
The members of TBA are listed next and at the bottom the RSS feed offers you a quick look at recent posts (the first few paragraphs) of my fellow bloggers. Just click on the RSS button to get a glimpse of what else is out there!
My Archives list is next - I started this Blog on March 27, 2006.
You can search a topic or horse/person name by using the Search button at the top of this page.

Coming soon: Your horse/foal photos can be published on THOROUGHBLOG as soon as we get a link going!


  • At 10:14 PM, Anonymous QQ said…

    Jen, The new layout is really sweet. And thanks for the list of hot Canadian runners!

  • At 1:31 AM, Blogger Milhouse said…

    A new thoroughbred meet is right around the corner at Woodbine and thus it's only appropriate that a fresh new look has arrived on Jen's thorough-blog. Looks great! Better than those dreadful Leafs!


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A fracture in the left leg of BUFFALO MAN during a Sunday workout has altered the Queen's Plate picture dramatically, 4 months before the Canadian classic.
Plate nominees and the winterbook odds will be released in 2 weeks but you can check on Plate info and the Top 10 prospects by going to Woodbine's Plate Micro-site (see link in post from yesterday). This link will be made available on the right side of my blog page shortly.

Woodbine Entertainment will not allow horses from Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Delaware on the backstretch until more is know about the possible Equine Herpes outbreak in those States. Several trainers from Ontario, including Les Frost and Don MacRae, are at those tracks.
Not related... but 3 days of training on Polytrack at Woodbine are completed and the number of workers has been light. Still 33 days until opening day.


Gary Kemplen is reportedly the latest agent for top jockey Patrick Husbands, who has changed his agent numerous times in recent years. Kemplen recently organized the business of Robert Landry. The latter has hired former jockey Doug Gibbons as his agent for 2007.


Canadian-bred SLAM BAMMY could be headed to Dubai for a start in the Sprint race there on Mar. 31 (World Cup day) if the gelding fares well in the Richter Scale Stakes at Gulfstream on Saturday.


It appears as if unbeaten DISCREET CAT, who has beaten Horse of the Year INVASOR and is certainly one of the most exciting horses to be seen in North America in recent years, will start in a $200,000 race in Dubai on Thursday to prep for the Mar. 31 World Cup. The card on Thursday (which can be seen on HPI TV and wagering in available) is jam-packed with beautifully bred and exciting prospects.


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Monday, February 26, 2007


Canadian-bred BUFFALO MAN is off all the trails - Kentucky Derby, Queen's Plate, after emerging from his 5 furlong workout yesterday with an ankle injury.
Check out:
The El Prado - Perfect Six, by Saratoga Six colt, trained by Cam Gambolati, had won two stakes this season - his latest was a win in the Ocala Championship Stakes earlier this month.
Peachtree Stables' TWILIGHT METEOR is left as the top Plate hopeful - to see the current Top 10, check out the Queen's Plate Microsite (see link to right and note below)

(Top right) A VALENTINE SWEETIE: This perky little miss was foaled Feb. 14 at Gail Woods' Woodlands Farm, Hillsburgh and she is from the second crop of Grade 1 winner and champion miler CANDY RIDE (Ride the Rails) from the Affirmed mare AFFIRMED ROYALTY (Battonier), whose half-sister, Batroyale, won the Grade 2 Del Mar Debutante in 1995.


SHAKE YOU DOWN, the millionaire gelding who was entered for $10,000 claiming at Charles Down yesterday, did not race as the card was cancelled, possibly by weather but perhaps because of the threat of an Equine Herpes outbreak that has hit Virginia.


Want to know the latest news on the Queen's Plate contenders, enter the ever-popular Queen's Plate Fantasy Challenge and tab the top 10 prospects? WOODBINE ENTERNTAINMENT's Plate micro-site is ready to launch and THOROUGHBLOG was asked to provide the top 10 leading Plate contenders (as of Feb. 26). This list will change regularly as the Plate (to be run this year on June 24) nears. THOROUGHBLOG has provided a link on my Links sidebar so you can access the Plate micro-site quickly.


Thanks to those knowledgable ( and very kind) folks who sent in comments on my recent posts regarding media coverage etc. Thanks also to all the e-mails I have been getting.

THOROUGHBLOG encourages everyone to write in to discuss racing issues, big races or their horses. Stay tuned, THOROUGHBLOG is re-vamping its look (thanks to my genius Brother - have you downloaded his oh-so cool PHOTOCAFE Program off my links list yet??) and your photos will soon be included!

Also had some chuckles this morning from an "anonymous" writer who sent in a bunch of comments for several older posts (Posts about Frank Stronach's energy drink, Edenwold etc.) in the wee hours of this morning!


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Sunday, February 25, 2007


(Editor's note: The sign of the racing times is a bit sad. For some print and electronic media outlets the only racing story was Jambalaya's win yesterday, one of the biggest in Canadian racing in the last decade (680 News Radio for example) but others elected only to report on yet another suspension in standardbred racing. Ouch.

(This morning's update follows a post yesterday on JAMBALAYA'S huge win in the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup yesterday)

$2,500 gelding joins elite group of Canadian-bred Grade 1 winners

Chief Bearhart, Mt. Sassafras With Approval, Sky Classic. Those are some names of the true-blue Canadian-bred and raced horses who took Grade 1 races in the United States past years. It’s been a while since a really good one has come along and proven him or herself against the best in the world.
JAMBALAYA joined that group yesterday with his stirring stretch charge in the Gulfstream Park Breeders’ Cup (1 3/8 miles turf), a super-exciting race even without the wonderful result.
And he cost only $2,500! Day Phillips picked up the Gus Schickedanz-bred at the Keeneland Sept. sale 4 years ago.
His dam, Muskrat Suzie was a one-time winner but she is by one of the world’s best broodmare sires, VICE REGENT. Muskrat Suzie has a 3yo this year, Mustfuhr, who is a Queen’s Plate eligible bred by Dr. Brian Van Arem.

It was the first Grade 1 win for Phillips, who told THOROUGHBLOG last night that she actually lost track of Jambalaya on the last turn of the race and thought the gelding had dropped out of contention.
She will race the gelding next in the Pan American Handicap at Gulfstream in 5 weeks.
Oh yes, as mentioned yesterday, Jambalaya’s best previous Beyer Figure was 104 earned at 1 3/8 miles last year. His Beyer yesterday? 104.

See a cool pic and read some quotes…


In response to Millhouse's comment on last night's post about Grade 1 winners at Gulfstream, owner/trainer Barb Minshall updated us this morning on Mt. Sassafras:

Hi Jen

The mention of 'Mt. Sassafras" ( a gelding) in recent column brings back lots of memories. He is happily retired at Nancy Sullivan's farm here in ON. He is now 15 yrs. old; he never ran in a claiming race.

b. minshall


Starting off right where he left off in 2006 as a stakes winning 2yo, TWILIGHT METEOR (by Canadian-bred Smart Strike) zoomed past another Smart Strike colt, Sedgefield, to win the Hallandale Beach Stakes yesterday at Gulfstream and perhaps edging past BUFFALO MAN as the early favourite for the Queen’s Plate (Buffalo Man races Saturday in the Fountain of Youth Stakes).
The ‘Meteor’s Beyer Figure was 94.
Twilight Meteor (to read more about this colt, do a ‘search’ on the top of the blog) was bred by Kinghaven Farms (David Willmot) and is out of One Over Prime, a daughter of champion With Approval, a Canadian Triple Crown winner. The colt was bought by Peachtree Stables (John Fort) for $150,000 as a yearling and is trained by Todd Pletcher. The colt was sold by Kinghaven as a weanling for $57,000.
Pletcher says the colt could race next in the Lane’s End Stakes at Keeneland (Polytrack) or in the Palm Beach Stakes on turf at Gulfstream. Twilight Meteor won the Bourbon Stakes on Keeneland’s Polytrack last fall with a whopping 97 Beyer Figure. Of course the Queen’s Plate will be contested on Polytrack for the first time in 2007 at Woodbine.
Let’s hope Twilight Meteor is pointed to the Plate in June.
A bright chestnut with one white hind stocking and a straight white line down his face stemming from a star, the colt is closely related to Whisky Wisdom, who stands at Windfields Farm.
See more about yesterday’s race..


Sam-Son Farms’ SCARLET BUTTERFLY looked to be in too deep in the Grade 3 Bayou Breeders’ Cup yesterday at Fair Grounds but was a strong and smooth 2nd to heavily favoured J’ray in the turf race. The Butterfly was beaten 4 3/4 lengths in her first graded stakes attempt and she should be fun to watch up at Woodbine.
The lightly raced, 2-time winning 'Butterfly' is by Theatrical from Hummingbird Red, by Red Ransom. The mare is a 2-time winning half-sister to Canadian Horse of the Year Soaring Free.
In the same race, Malcom Pierce trainee ELLE RUNAWAY dropped too far off a slow early pace and could not catch up, ultimately finishing 5th.

On Friday, North Highland Farms’-bred HOMESTEADER, who was 8th in last fall’s Jammed Lovely Stakes, won her 2nd consecutive race at Laurel Park in Maryland, this time with a 96 Beyer Figure. The daughter of Pioneering is out of the undefeated mare Sugarloaf, dam of last year’s placed 2yo Baileysinheritance.
The first group of workers were logged in officially at Woodbine yesterday, 5 weeks before the season is set to start (Mar.31). Thirty-one horses worked either 2 or 3 furlongs.


Canadian-bred Sky Diamond, stakes placed and earned of $450,000, faded in a race for $12,500 yesterday at Aqueduct and was claimed by trainer Jason Servis. The gelding, now 7-years-old, was winning for $77,500 claiming last year at Woodbine.
Shake You Down, multiple stakes winner, old guy, etc. (lots of mentions of this guy in previous posts) is racing at Charles Town today for $10,000.


Champion 3yo colt of last year, SHILLELAGH SLEW is continuing training in Florida having worked four furlongs in :48 4/5 yesterday at Palm Meadows.
Sam-Son Farms' British-bred ICE BRIDGE is a strong contender in the 7th at Fair Grounds today, dirt or grass. He had a brutal trip in his last start on Jan 12 and adds blinkers.
Ontario-breds WESTMORELAND and GO TO THE SUN are in the 9th race, an allowance on turf.

WHAT THE....???

Comment line on PIZZA DUDE in the 1st at Tampa Bay today.. "drew off, pulled up"

(the horse's running line shows him breaking 12th of 12 followed by - - - - - )



  • At 12:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Could it be that those news outlets which reported about the suspended harness trainer found it newsworthy that race horses have been injected with an amphetamine more commonly known as a street drug?
    Does it not serve the interest of all involved in racing, whatever breed, to get rid of these creeps?
    Why chastise those outlets for reporting the truth while others with vested interests prefer to look the other way and pretend it's not a major issue in racing?

  • At 12:45 PM, Blogger Jen Morrison said…

    EDITOR'S NOTE: "Anonymous" is right about the need for getting rid of the creeps and there surely are plenty in TB racing too. However, a nice balance or coverage, especially with a story as big as both were, is not such a bad idea, is it?
    I don't believe anyone with knowledge about the sport today believes it's a non-issue. But there are other stories and what a shame the good can't go along with the bad.

  • At 3:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Good point on the balance. It would be nice if there was someone in the industry who would inform the papers of a Canadian achievement. Here's to Jambalaya!

  • At 4:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Same "anonymous" blogger as earlier in the day (though Jen you obviously know me!!). Would be remiss not to say that your site has become a valuable source for those interested in the Canadian racing scene. Especially so this winter with the regular (one-handed) updates.

  • At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I live in the city of London and my paper as well chose only to print a story on the suspension of the harness trainer rather than any other noteworthy achievements made in either TB or SB. That I'm afraid is all to common these days, people tend to want to read about the bad rather than the good. In fact I'm hard pressed to find any attention to TB racing in my paper (harness racing at Western Fair is all they report on) Thanks goodness for blogs like yours and the internet where I can find all the info I need. It would've been nice to open up the sports section and read about Jambalaya's acheivment rather than another negative story involving the harness racing industry.


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Saturday, February 24, 2007


(Photo courtesy of Dave Landry)

One of the biggest wins by a Canadian-bred in recent years came yesterday when stocky and gritty JAMBALAYA edged $2 million earner Honey Ryder to win the Grade 1 GUlfstream Park Breeders' Cup Handicap at Gulfstream.

In an exciting renewal of the $300,000 race, Jambalaya was stalking the speed runners throughout the 1 3/8 race while saving ground under Javiar Castellano. When the running started to heat up on the turn for home, Jambalaya was blocked for a spell before Castellano angled the 5-year-old Langfuhr gelding out for a furious stretch. With Honey Ruder shooting up the rail and last year's GPBC winner Einstein fighting for the lead with Go Between, Jambalaya surged in time and won by a neck for $180,000 (US).

Catherine Day Phillips trains the gelding for her family's Kingfield Farms.

Jambalaya, who was a super 3rd in his season debut in the Canadian Turf Handicap on Feb. 3, continues to impress in his pre-race appearances, having grown and filled out. Let's hope we get to see this star at Woodbine this summer and fall - if not - good luck to the $2,500 yearling purchase!

Jambalaya was bred by Gus Schickedanz of Schomberg, Ontario.


  • At 1:22 AM, Blogger Milhouse said…

    What a day for the Ontario Breds!!! When was the last time two Ontario Breds one stakes races at Gulfstream? A long...long time ago...if ever. Great to see Jambalaya strut his stuff. He looked amazing pre-race and showed that his is going to be a force to reckon with all season long at Woodbine. A classy win for some classy connections. Jen, as far as I am concerned he is now number one on the Canadian-bred Runners list. You win a Grade I race in the States, that is saying something. Who was the last Canadian bred horse to win a Grade 1 race at Gulfstream? The only one I can think of is Mt. Sassafras when he defeated Skip Away in the Gulfstream Park Handicap. My memory is going though so there may be others after him that have. Twilight Meteor was again very sharp yesterday. It was never in doubt once he got racing room that he was going to win it. Smart Strikes 1....2. One of the best sires right now. Twilight Meteor is one to consider as we look forward to the Plate, but maybe team Pletcher has Derby aspirations with this runner. Who knows. Keep up the great work J-Mo!


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Sorry to start the day on a negative note...


“We’re not going to run him any cheaper than $14,000 and, obviously, we’re not going to send him out there if we feel he can’t win or if we feel his health is compromised” – Robert Cole Jr., owner of millionaire SHAKE YOU DOWN, in the Feb.10 BLOOD-HORSE.

Stakes winner and track record setter SHAKE YOU DOWN is entered at Charles Town tomorrow for $10,000 claiming (race 6).
If you read the story in the Blood-Horse on this owner, you can’t help but finish the piece with a bad, bad taste in your mouth, oh yeah, Scott Lake is his trainer.

Stakes placed SKY DIAMOND, bred by Sam-Son Farms, is a 10-time winner in 32 career starts and is 7-years-olds. Not long ago, he was racing at Woodbine in stakes and high claimers and doing well for Roger Patten, trainer Sid Attard and others. Today he starts for $12,500 claiming at Aqueduct for trainer Steve Asmussen.


Kingfield Farms’ JAMBALAYA is a serious contender in the Gulfstream Park Breeders Cup Handicap today at Gulfstream. He was a close 3rd in his first race of the year, the Canadian Turf Handicap, and didn’t have a shrewd journey that day. He has a rider change for today’s race (Bejarano is staying with one of the favourites, Einstein). The GP Breeders’ Cup is a Grade 1 and is a loaded field of 11 including the top mare HONEY RYDER, MacDiarmida winner RAMAZUTTI and classy grey 9-year-old REVVED UP. Jambayala’s bes career Beyer Figure of 104 came in a race at this distance of 1 3/8 miles on the turf.

One of the projected Queen’s Plate contenders, TWILIGHT METEOR, makes his 3yo debut in the Hallandale Beach Stakes today at GP. The 7th race on the card is a 1 1/16 mile grass race and that surface has proven to be fine with the son of Smart Strike – One Over Prime. Twilight Meteor, however, ran a 97 Beyer Figure in his final start at 2 in the Bourbon Stakes on the Keeneland Polytrack. John Velazquez, normally the main rider for trainer Todd Pletcher and this colt, will stay with another Smart Strike colt in the race, Pleasant Strike.

Emma-Jayne Wilson has a decent chance to do well on ELLE RUNAWAY (Kentucky-bred trained by Malcolm Pierce) in the Bayou Breeders’ Cup Handicap (G3) at Fair Grounds today although the distance is a stretch ( 1 1/8 miles). Sam-Son’s Canadian-bred SCARLET BUTTERFLY is also in the race but is in deep.

Queen’s Plate eligible TOUCH A PRINCE makes his 2nd career start for Stornach Stables in the final race at Gulfstream today. He’s by Touch Gold out of the Carson City mare Purple Princess and will wear blinkers for trainer Brian Lynch.
Another Plate eligible, GOLDEN GLADE, debuts in the 4th race at 6 furlongs from the widest post for Harlequin Ranches and trainer Reade Baker. He is by Gilded Time from Woodmiss by Woodman.


Wallace Racing’s FLASHY N’ BOLD won a $12,500 claimer at GP yesterday providing trainer Barb Baird with her first win of the meeting. The gelding was claimed from the race. Trainer Frank Passero claimed the favourite, Beaming, from the race so expect to see this one racing at Woodbine late next month.
Canadian-bred mare MISS BRADFORD CO. (El Prado) was fourth in a $35,000 turf race in the final event on the card beaten all a head, a neck and a nose. That last race was one of the most exciting seen all week with most of the field close at the finish.


Plate hopeful MARCHFIELD, a stakes placed son of A.P, Indy who was 2nd in his 2007 debut at Gulfstream earlier this month, was back on the worktab at GP yesterday - 1:00 3/5 for 5 furlongs, 3rd fastest of the morning. Canadian-bred stakes winner SLAM BAMMY worked 6 furlongs in 1:13 1/5, two seconds slower than Kentucky Derby hopeful NOBIZ LIKE SHOBIZ. TOP TEN LIST, a Canadian-bred stakes winner by Bold Executive, continues to work like a tigress - :46 1/5 from the gate.


PALACE PIER, owned by Bill Sorokolit and SEALY HILL, owned by Eugene Melnyk, are among the 3yo fillies nominated to the Kentucky Oaks on the first Friday in May...CANDY BOX powers her way into the Hot Canadian-bred List on THOROUGHBLOG with her win in the Stormy Krissy Stakes. Recent Tampa turf winner ITUNA slipped off the list but you can still read about her by doing a SEARCH at the top of the Blog page. Six of the top 10 are owned or were bred by Adena Springs, Stronach Stables.


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Friday, February 23, 2007


Stronach Stable's continues to roll in 2007 not only with runners but homebreds. Yesterday, CANDY BOX, a Canadian-bred 5-year-old mare by Running Stag - Miner's Mirage out of Mining, rocked the field in the Stormy Krissy Stakes ($66,750) at Aqueduct, winning by more than 6 lengths as the 7 to 2 second favourite. Trained by Bruve Levine, Candy Box was making her 2nd start of the year. She began her racing life at Keeneland in 2005, winning her debut. She is now 4 for 12 in her career, earnings of over $170,000 and is one of 6 foals ot race for Colin S. winner Miners Mirage.
Her time of 1:11 2/5 translated into a career-best 95 Beyer Figure.

More later today!


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Thursday, February 22, 2007


(This is what's going on in snow-belt Brampton North this morning...who's going to shovel this stuff???)


It took a couple of months but the news has become public now...former Kinghaven Farms office manager Christiane Krohn has been taking money from the farm and its owner David Willmot. Sad story made the TORONTO STAR, GTA section, this morning.


Sometimes one is happy, or at least contented when you see really old horses still strut their stuff in fine style (AZURE CIEL won at age 11 at Gulfstream the other day) and 10-year-old TOP BUNK remained undefeated in 2007 as he won for the 2nd consecutive time yesterday at GP for trainer Peter Walder. The gelding is racing for a $10,000 claiming tag. It was his 18th win in his 79th start and he has earned over $520,000.
Sometimes we cringe too. Stakes winner HYDROGEN, an 8-year-old horse, has won half a million and more but is not in the breeding shed and instead losing badly to Top Bunk in his first race for Canadian owner and trainer Martha and Nick Gonzalez. Earle Mack won the 2003 Valedictory at Woodbine with this guy, who was trained by Mark Casse and ridden by Emile Ramsammy that day.
Hydrogen was claimed yesterday by Rhiannon Vitello.
Have yet to see classy stakes winner SHAKE YOU DOWN return from a poor outing in New York in January, perhaps someone has retired that multiple stakes winner finally…perhaps.

Today...Canadian champion 3yo from two years back, PALLADIO, returns to action at Gulfstream today in an allowance that lured, gulp, Grade 1 turf stakes winner ENGLISH CHANNEL

CANDY BOX, a Canadian-bred 5-year-old mare from the Stronach Stables, is a 3 to 1 second choice in the Stormy Krissy Stakes at Aqueduct today. Livermore Valley is the 7 to 5 favourite.

Yesterday...Stronach Stables’ MOUNTAIN WOLF, a Queen’s Plate nominee, bore out badly in the stretch in his grass debut yesterday at Gulfstream and finished a messy 5th…READY EDDIE, touted by this author as a likely winner in an allowance yesterday at Philadelphia Park had a beautiful trip in that 1 mile allowance but was simply 2nd best to a promising 5yo, SCHMOO (Real Quiet). ‘Eddie is an Ontario-bred by More Than Ready.


My motto has always been FIGS DON’T LIE. Okay, so that’s a blanket statement but Beyer Speed Figures are not often far off the mark, and I’m not just talking about the horse’s last race. Read Dick Jerardi’s DRF column about why the HARD SPUN hype was silly at best because of his oh-so-mediocre figures heading into Monday’s Southwest Stakes. (You have to sign up to be a member to read it or pick up a copy at your local store!)


If I mentioned this already it is just my fading memory setting in (I forgot my alarm code yesterday and had to listen to the siren for 5 minutes)…THE GREAT MATCH RACE is a cool read, written by John Eisenberg. It’s a fun journey through 1822 and 1823 when the biggest sporting event of the time, a match race between ECLIPSE and SIR HENRY held hostage over the United States and the battle between north and south. A very breezy and interesting book.

TOMORROW STUFF – Canadian-breds HERB ENGAGEMENT (Plate eligible by Silver Charm – Bold Engagement, by Bold Ruckus, bred by Majestic Thoroughbreds) and UNGI BLANC (Hennessy – Romantic Tryst, by Woodman, bred by Huntington Stud Farm in Ontario) debut in an $80,000 maiden claimer at GP… CAT’S GOOD TO GO (by Tactical Cat), owned by Canadian Don Danard and trained by Renee Kierans at Woodbine (Malcolm Pierce at Fair Grounds), debuts at FG in a maiden allowance.


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Wednesday, February 21, 2007


**(Great footage alert: Readers have to check out the RSS TBA feeder button (below the list of my fellow Bloggers). The feeder gives you a short brief on all the recent posts. Have a look at the footage of Invaser eating hay and Ken McPeek's discussion about the Birdblog. Also, scroll further down and find the NIATROSS footage from his time trial in 1980, when he hits the wire the crowd noise is stunning. Okay, it's harness racing but he was a super horse, I went to see him at Greenwood once)

Today's stuff...


Yep, tracks are working hard to protect THE stars of the show – look at the Woodbine leaders with the move to Polytrack and its huge contributions (along with other local horsemen’s groups) to LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society.
There is work to be done however and perhaps promoting THE stars of the racing game (horses, stupid!) through the media is a good idea - attract people to the next possible star, get them acquainted with horse names – drill them into their heads. Bring the fans out to see the horses.
A super opinion piece in the Blood-Horse appeared this week:


A write-up in the THOROUGHBRED TIMES Daily News this morning on the continuing tweaking of Turfway Park’s Polytrack (Woodbine may have to do the same very soon) suggests that management at the Kentucky track threatened jockeys who did not want to ride on the troubled surface. Eeks.

Woodbine has had similar problems with the ‘inmates trying to run the asylum' scenario to the point that Woodbine chief David Willmot had stern conversations with the jocks last fall when then continued to try and cancel races because of wind/cold temps.
Dicey issue here – make them ride? Don’t make them ride? What is safe and what is not? Hmmmm.


Canadian-bred READY EDDIE figures to be second-favourite in the 9th at Philly Park today, a 1 mile allowance race for $31,000. The son of More Than Ready – Authentic Deed, by Alydeed appears to be sitting on his 3rd career win however. A 2-time winner in 18 starts, Eddie is making his first start for trainer Mike Pino (19% win rate with newcomers to his barn) and the gelding is moving out to 1 mile (6-1-2-1 at the distance).

Bred by Gail Wood, Alex Brancato and Belvedere Farm, consider Ready Eddie today’s selection on an otherwise quiet Wednesday. (See yesterday’s posts for more Wednesday entrants).

Pedigree buffs might be intrigued by Darley Stud’s PARTY JONES (by the same sire as Smarty Jones), a beginner at Tampa today (9th race). By Elusive Quality, the colt is out of Group 3 winner Spanish Falls, a half-sister to Group 1 winners BALLIGARRY (Canadian International), STARBOROUGH and ARISTOTLE. Debuts in a dirt sprint which is weird but I’m curious as to what this guy looks like.

Um, champion SHILLELAGH SLEW has had just that one workout a few weeks back, same goes for stakes winner SEALY HILL. Let’s hope these guys get geared up again or have landed at Woodbine by now.


  • At 11:30 AM, Blogger Handride said…

    Thanks for the RSS shoutout. The group feed is really great, I probably check 5 times a day. There's always something going on in horse racing.


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Tuesday, February 20, 2007



Sympathy this morning to all those who were sure HARD SPUN was THE Derby horse this year but, ah, he’s a mere mortal. A wide trip started his journey and he never looked happy – can you say ‘need to lead’?
No Derby winners in the Southwest S. field yesterday I’m afraid. Although my 2 win bets on Forty Grams and Teuflesberg (trained by one-time Woodbine jockey Jamie Sanders) worked out well!!


The standardbred biz is both in an ugly mess in Ontario but also in the midst of an overhaul. Tons of kudos to Woodbine and the Ontario Racing Commission who are heck-bent to eliminate ‘cheaters’ who use illegal drugs on their harness horses. Tiny fields were the result on the weekend at Woodbine when 3 trainers were not allowed to race horses that they had entered. Kind of like a baseball or hockey strike, this stuff is going to keep people well clear of this sport until confidence is restored. At least the local industry folks are working very hard to do just that.
Now, it’s time to work on the thoroughbred set….
Check out Rob Longley’s reports on the crackdown and the possible link to a murder of a former harness driver in Ottawa at – click on sports.

Toronto owner MIKE COLL won the 6th race at Gulfstream yesterday with WINNING APPEAL, a Florida-bred 3yo filly who won her maiden for $16,000 claiming in her 4th start of the season. The fill is trained by Nick Gonzalez, whose 2 other starters yesterday were not as successful. Canadian champion 2yo in 2004, WHOLELOTTABOURBON, stopped after showing speed in the day’s 3rd race and was beaten 10 lengths in his first claiming start. In that race, British Columbia-bred SEEKING THE CARAT was vanned off after his 3rd place finish.

JUDITH’S WILD RUSH was a flat 6th in the General George at Laurel behind star sprinter SILVER WAGON. Judith was beaten 8 ¼ lengths and ran a 91 Beyer Figure…SEASIDE RETREAT fizzled in his 2007 season debut in the 7th race on turf, beaten about 6 lengths…If you get excited by really tiny fields then you would have liked Santa Anita yesterday which had lots of 4 and 5 horse events. Canadian-bred Telepathic was scratched from his scheduled debut while Town Thief was a distant 3rd in a 4 horse field in an allowance event…


TWILIGHT METEOR, a Queen’s Plate eligible for trainer Todd Pletcher and the Fort family’s Peachtree Stables, had a quick 5 furlong spin at Palm Meadows yesterday – 1:01.
MOUNTAIN WOLF could be yet another Adena Springs owned or bred Plate contender if he progresses 2nd time out in the MSW tomorrow at GP. The Can.bred is by El Prado (who else?) and is making his 2nd career start.
IS CAT GOOD TO GO? Don Danard’s first-time starter, CATS GOOD TO GO is scheduled to debut at Fair Grounds on Friday in the day’s final tilt, a 5 ½ furlong maiden special weight. In the care currently of Malcolm Pierce, the colt was trained at Woodbine last year by Renee Kierans. He’s 12 to 1 in the morning line and has Emma-Jayne Wilson on board. The colt is by Cat’s At Home and was bred by Bernard and Karen McCormack. Wilson also rides SEAMANS VILLAGE, a Plate nominee, in a grass race earlier on the card for owner Eugene Melnyk.


Looking for a horse report of item on THOROUGHBLOG? Use the Search tool at the top!! Oscar Red Carpet 2


  • At 3:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hello Jenn,

    I have been checking daily for some comments on some of the media that has been surrounding Woodbine of late. With the news of Rui Pimentel, David Clarke going to trial this month and all the positive tests this past three weeks....ouch!

    What's your take?


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Monday, February 19, 2007



Three-time Sovereign Award winning gelding JUDITHS WILD RUSH, a Kentucky-bred who races in Canada, continues to slug it out in the racing wars today when he meets a rough field in the General George at Laurel. Judith won the Native Dancer S. last month with a 98 Beyer Figure. He has been racing steadily since last Feb. and is currently trained by Julian Canet but Reade Baker usually trains him in Canada for Harvey Tenenbaum.
The General George will be shown on HPI TV here in Canada but you can’t bet on it.
Not as sharp anymore is 2yo champion from a few years back, WHOLELOTTABOURBON, who slips into the claiming ranks at Gulfstream today, The gelding races for a $50,000 tag. Trainer Nick Gonzalez has numerous horses entered today at GP (races 3, 5, 6).
SEASIDE RETREAT, one of Sovereign Award winning trainer Mark Casse’s favourite horses, makes his 2007 debut today at GP in a turf allowance. The King Cugat fellow was gelded last fall and has shown signs of taking racing more seriously according to Casse.
**There are Canadian-bred horses in the first 3 races at GP today.

At Santa Anita, first-time starting Canadian-bred TELEPATHIC (Tiznow out of Woodbine stakes winner Flashy n Smart) debuts as a 4yo in the 3rd race. The Dom Romeo-bred was a $310,000 yearling purchase in 2004.
The 8th race is a loaded allowance (non-winners of 1 ‘other than’) and Canadian-bred TOWN THIEF will try to contend against the likes of Mr. Sekiguchi (the $8 million yearling from 2004 with a 101 Beyer Figure last time) and the much-hyped Chilean star Haraldo.


That’s all you read right now and it’s lots of fun. Today’s SOUTHWEST STAKES at Oaklawn (yeesh, that track announcer is real hard to listen to, a la the guy at Tampa) is the next test for the impeccably bred HARD SPUN, who has never lost. Colt got a great post, 9 of 9, since he can track the inside speed rivals. The Danzig – Turkish Tryst colt ran a 95 Beyer in his latest at Fair Grounds but was egged on all the way in that event and Mario Pino, his rider…hmmmm, not confident there.
If you want to bet against him, why not FORTY GRAMS? He’s a Distorted Humor colt out of the Phone Trick mare Belle South, an unraced daughter of stakes winner and producer Agotaras. Just won for the second consecutive time at Fair Grounds by 13 plus lengths in allowance company with a 90 Beyer.
The Oaklawn card is a good one and you can bet on it through Woodbine, etc.

(sorry, bad pun)

Tough 6yo mare ITUNA, bred by Jim and Alice Sapara, won her second consecutive race in 2007 yesterday at Tampa and poked her nose into THOROUGHBLOG’S Hot Canadian-bred list (a somewhat subjective list but hopefully it acts as newsworthy too). Ituna is now owned by Montesano Racing and trained by Top Proctor and won a $62,50 allowance/optional claimer yesterday (she did not race for the claiming price) and won the one-mile turf race with an 82 Beyer Speed Figure.
The Boston Harbor – Goodeve, by Pleasant Colony mare had previously won a $32,000 allow./optional claimer with a 76 Beyer.
Ituna began her career for the Sapara’s in Jan. 2004, debuting against so-to-be-star Madcap Escapade, finishing 10th. She was eased 2nd time out when claimed by Runnin Horse Stable for $45,000.
In fact, Ituna was beaten 100 ¼ lengths in her first 3 races of her career, all on dirt, but then suddenly won in April, 2004 when moved to grass.
The mare has been claimed several times and was scooped up by Montesano for $35,000 in Aug. 2005. She races at Arlington Park in the summer.
Ituna’s mom, GOODEVE is regally bred…she is a daughter of Horse of the Year RULING ANGEL (Vice Regent)). Goodeve won her debut and then retired after 5 races for the Saparas. She is one of just 6 foals born in North America for Ruling Angel, one of which was stakes winner All An Angel.
Ituna is Goodeve’s first foal of three the mare produced through 2005. She has won 9 races in 37 starts and over $180,000.
Speaking of the Hot Canadian-bred list, some movements mean old guy COOL N COLLECTIVE has been taken off the list for now, CARRINGTON is still working at Philly Park so he stays and SEALY HILL is just off the list but the filly who beat her last month, AUTOBAHN GIRL, won a stakes on Saturday. Sealy Hill has not worked since her 2007 debut, however.


Gail Wood and Ruth Barbour-bred HERE TO PLEASE slipped back in the stretch at Aqueduct yesterday and finished 5th in a $75,000 claiming race but posted a 78 Beyer Figure and was in top form in his previous race when winning with an 82.
The colt did not seem to be using his best style when battling on the pace but in th end, he was only 3 lengths behind the winner.
Owned by the Winning Move syndicate and trained by Gary Contessa, Here to Please is from the first crop of CAT’S AT HOME and more big things can be expected from this improving colt.

SCOTT’S WILD and other stuff

Trainer SCOTT FAIRLIE, who has a dozen horses already shipped into Woodbine, won an allowance race at Philadelphia Park yesterday with ROUX BE WILD (Ky.-bred), a fellow who has raced locally for a few years. Maggie Couse did the saddling for Fairlie.
Roux Be Wild (Wild Rush) has won 2 of 3 starts at Philly and was third in the other, all allowances, since being claimed for just $10,000 form his final start of 2006 at Woodbine. His Beyer Figures have soared to 84, 84 and 85.
Fairlie/Couse have won an allowance race with CARRINGTON at Philly this season as well.

CHRISTIE’S TREASURE, a long, smooth striding Can.-bred 3yo by Belong to Me (see yesterday’s posting), had a clear lead late in that 2 turn grass allowance at Gulfstream yesterday but was caught late by Sharp Susan. The flashy chestnut was bred by Cam Allard. Her Beyer yesterday was 81.

SOVEREIGN AWARD winning trainer PHIL ENGLAND is reportedly acting as an assistant to trainer Roger Attfield at Woodbine currently.

QUEEN’S PLATE hopeful EASTERMAN is up to 6 furlongs from the gate in his prepping at Palm Meadows for Frank Romano and trainer Mike DePaulo. He breezed in 1:16 on Sunday morning. Easterman is by the red-hot sire Smart Strike and is getting close to making his 2007 debut and second career start.


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Sunday, February 18, 2007


I had no time for wagering yesterday but what a great game this still is to bet on when so many favourites are pounded down into overbet status and plenty of them lose.
We've already seen classic contenders Dreaming of Anna and Lawrence the Roman go down in flames and yesterday, poor little Golden Dreamer, who had already been presented the win in Aqueduct's Dearly Precious Stakes in all media outlets before yesterday, was chewed up in a maniacal speed duel and finished off the board.
Wagering is what makes horse racing go 'round and how cool is it that, even with all our speed figures and trip notes and pedigree stuff that so-called 'sure things' still falter. They are all living creatures after all and you gotta love 'em.

Speaking of speed duels - that was quite something in the Grade 3 Sabin at Gulfstream yesterday. Again, the race was essentially awarded to favoured OONAGH MACCOOL by folks (even me!) but Canadian-bred SUGAR SWIRL would not let her go and eventually beat that one to the wire - for 4th place.
Still, quite a super effort by SUGAR SWIRL (Touch Gold - Astrapi, Distinctive Pro), her Beyer yesterday was 81, and perhaps we will have a good older mare for the main track up at Woodbine this year (that division is always painfully weak up here).

Trainer Allen Jerkens won both Gulfstream stakes yesterday while Jimmy Jerkens unleashed a nice debut winner (from the 1 post) named VITRUVIUS, by E Dubai out of an Easy Goer mare.

TOP TEN LIST was scratched from that stake at Tampa yesterday, too bad, the winner led all the way through slow fractions and 'List is a solid front running type.

Good news for top 3yo Canadian-bred filly SEALY HILL as the gal who beat her in her 2007 debut at Gulfstream, AUTOBAHN GIRL, won a stake at Tampa yesterday. The latter became the 97th stakes winner for superstar stud A. P. INDY (see how he has a new halter on in his ads, I have one that was taken off of him last summer!) and the filly is out of Canadian champion SOARISE.

Pretty quiet around the tracks today since tomorrow's American holiday, PRESIDENT'S DAY, has tons of cool racing action.
Canada's champion 2yo of a few years back, WHOLELOTTABOURBON, is in a turf, sprint claiming race today at Gulfie.
Also, there is an intriguing Can.-bred 3yo filly in the 8th race - CHRISTIES TREASURE (Belong to Me - Roses at Sunset, by Valid Appeal), bred by Cam Allard, who makes her 2nd start since her 1 1/8 mile maiden score at Churchill for Todd Pletcher.

JAMBALAYA bulleted again in a workout yesterday in Ocala and is headed to the Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup 'Cap. Trainer Catherine Day Phillips told THOROUGHBLOG she was 'thrilled' with the geldings 3rd place finish in the Can. Turf 2 weeks ago.


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Friday, February 16, 2007


Tight schedule for yours truly today/Sat. morning so just some notes about what is going on...

SUGAR SWIRL, a resident on the THOROUGHBLOG Hot Canadian-bred list, is in very, very tough in the Sabin H.-G3 tomorrow at Gulfstream. The Touch Gold - Astrapi, by Distinctive Pro won her 2007 opener at GP at 1 mile (83 Beyer) but was fading and now she meets gals like Oonagh McCool, Swap Fliparoo, etc.

WILLARD STRAIGHT, a classy old guy, makes his first start for Canadian barn TUCCI STABLES tomorrow in the final event for $62,500 claiming. Not sure whether he'll get grass, however.

STUART HYMAN'S promising colt TYCOON DOBY (Cherokee Run - Mareseille Express, by Caerleon) will be heavily favoured in the 3rd at Santa Anita. Thw Triple Crown nominee ran a 92 Beyer Figure 2nd time out. He is Kentucky-bred but of course, Canadian owned.

TOP TEN LIST (Bold Executive - Pick Ten) is in the Endeavor Breeders Cup Stakes, $125,000, at Tampa at 1 1/16 miles on the turf. Recently sold at auction by Frank DiGiulio and Robert Tiller, the filly is now owned by John Crane and trained by Michael Trombetta. She is a stakes winner in Ontario.

THREE IN THE BAG seems to have resurrected himself. The (Silver Deputy - Light Show) gelding, a 5yo, is in a $75,000 optional claimer at AQU tomorrow with a win and a third in 2 strats this year. He was 2nd in the Plate Trial 2 years ago and 9th in the Plate to Wild Desert.
Of course, the Queen's Plate has been one of the weakest races in Canada in several years based on winning Beyer Figures and how the horses have done since then.


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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Thurs. afternoon bits

1:52 p.m.


The first Indian-bred horse to win in Dubai is MYSTICAL, who won the finale on tonight's card at Nad Al Sheba. Who is Mystical - who knows? He was in the news this week for his rin in the Property Stakes this evening, his first foray away from his homeland where he has beaten everything. Not sure what he beat in the race but he had a downright awful trip and somehow managed to creep up insude of a huge pack with less than 2 furlongs left to win. Pretty cool stuff just as a racing fan.
Similarly, the American-bred FOLK cantered in the UAE 1000 guineas and looked like an absolute monster.

(this just came across today, will have to investigate further)

TORONTO, ON: February 15, 2007-

Toronto based company Sungold International Holdings Corp. recently announced that it has acquired an exclusive license on patents for the first ever lottery to be based on actual live horse racing and is now actively negotiating with several jurisdictions, game operators, and service providers in North America.

To be launched as Horsepower® World Pool Lottery, the license grants Sungold® the rights to a suite of lottery games that will include live horse racing at participating racetracks. As well, the company is pleased to announce that in addition to the licensed signal fee to the content providers they will be directing a portion of the takeout on the lottery games to recognized North American Horsemen’s Associations for direct purse enhancements for horsemen.

Horsepower® World Pool Lottery will provide players two separate multi-million dollar lottery opportunities on live races. The first is the Horsepower Pick 7™, which will require the selection of the first place finisher in each of seven races held at as many as seven participating racetracks on weekends only. The second is the Quick6®, requiring the player to select the first six finishers in correct order in a race on an hourly and daily basis. Carryover pools are expected to build to multi-million dollar proportions on a regular basis and both unique contests will offer consolation prizes in addition to the grand prizewinner.

“Besides giving the millions of North American lottery players an exciting new choice of play with the opportunity to win lucrative payouts similar to the ever-popular Powerball®, our game will also directly support the racing industry,” says Larry Simpson, President and CEO of Sungold’s subsidiary Horsepower Broadcasting Network (HBN) International Ltd. “This is an exciting milestone for our company. For the first time, utilizing this intellectual property, the racing industry will be able to market their racing content outside of their existing distribution channels while introducing the excitement and the pageantry of horseracing to the lottery player.”

Similar to the existing model in place, the participating racetracks will license their signal to the lottery. The races will be shown live, for example on existing satellite television feeds, current simulcast networks, and streamed over the Internet bi-weekly, several times a day or potentially as many as several per hour. Tickets on the Horsepower® World Pool Lottery events may be purchased at a wide variety of locations including racetracks, casinos, kiosks, online, as well as general retail locations like convenience stores, supermarkets or anywhere that conventional lottery tickets are currently sold.

For more information please contact:

Larry Simpson
President & CEO
Horsepower Broadcasting Network (HBN) International Ltd.


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-30!! Woo Hoo

Good grief, snowbanks taller than me (okay, so that's not that tall) and incredibly frigid temps today, ouch.
Some thoughts during a quiet week, by the way, is anybody out there?


Ray Paulick of the BLOOD-HORSE has a super recent column but what I want to point out is the second part of it under the title “Bad Rider”. This is one scary notion, idea, thought but the American Jockeys Guild.
Hey, no one says they don’t risk life and limb every day, they are true athletes but like other athletes, sometimes think the sport revolves around them. They mean 10-20% in a horse race, not as much as a backstretch person who looks after the horse. And the owners, well they are paying the staggering bills for them.
They are not bigger than the sport itself…check out Paulick’s commentary at


Okay, I must have been sleeping during this but one of Woodbine’s most successful and popular jockeys, LAURIE GULAS, rode in her first race in about 8 years yesterday, finishing last on Flaming Creek in Gulfstream’s 2nd race.
Kudos to the HPI TV network for getting Gulas on air to talk about the comeback.


Cheap meds? I’m still in a haze but watching the 1st at GP yesterday, Larry Collmus called heavy favourite PENSION by the name of FURLOUGH for the entire race. Yikes, I thought I had gone back in time, way back.
(Furlough, a graded stakes winner in the late 1990’s ,is Pension’s mum).


There is not a hotter racing/breeding stable going than ADENA SPRINGS right now, just look at the THOROUGHBLOG Hot Canadian-bred list, many are owned or bred by Adena.
PERFECT BULLET, by red-hot El Prado out of Eclipse Award winning mare PERFECT STING debuts for the farm today at GP. The colt was training at Woodbine last fall for Brian Lynch and the colt is Kentucky-bred.
In that same race 6 is Mark Casse-trainee VALTRUS, with Pat Husbands on board. Husbands, who apparently has changed agents yet again, will be attending a hearing in Ontario regarding his skirmish with fellow jockey CONSTANT MONTPELLIER next month. Both were handed big money fines and suspensions.


INDIA'S 'greatest horse', MYSTICAL, in race in DUBAI just after lunch. Might be interesting, more interesting than shovelling my doorstep (love my neighbourhood kids who shovel the driveway!)


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Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Chocolate Valentine

The snow drifts around my car are 2 feet tall this morning but the wind, my gosh, the wind!
Anyway, racing bits for VALENTINE'S DAY, 2007 are below but, at the risk of mentioning something that is certainly not news...
THE DEPARTED is a fantastic movie and if MARTIN SCORSESE doesn't win the Oscar this year, well, sheesh. 'Course you have to like the mob-stuff and violence but the acting is amazing.
Okay, enough with the movie reviews..


Jim and Alice Sapara, who own a large and successful racing operation in Canada and won last year’s Queen’s Plate with Edenwold, paid $160,000 (US) for a chestnut 2yo colt by Trippi – Sweetheavenlycross, by Saint Ballado at yesterday’s Ocala 2yo sale.
The colt is by Grade 1 winner Trippi (End Sweep) and from a placed mare who is a full sister to What a Pleasure Stakes winner Sweetsouthersaint. The colt is a Florida-bred. The lone Canadian-bred to sell, a filly by Forest Camp – Zambia, brought $85,000.
The OBS sale had a dip in average price.

Bison City Stakes moves to Woodbine for 2007
(Woodbine press release)

TORONTO, February 13 - All the fan favourites are returning, but theWoodbine Thoroughbred stakes schedule, released today by WoodbineEntertainment Group, will have a slightly different look in 2007. The 102-race calendar, worth more than $22 million this year, featuresWoodbine's traditional added-money events, the Queen's Plate, PattisonCanadian International and the Woodbine Mile, presented by Bell. Withthe 2007 schedule, the company is looking to expand its cache of bigevent days by combining numerous stakes on one card. "We've prepared a top-notch stakes schedule in 2007," said Steve Lym,Woodbine's Racing Secretary. "Our big races are in the traditionalspots on the calendar, but we've bundled some of other key stakes eventsto create several big, exciting days this year."
The Grade 2, $700,000 Northern Dancer Breeders' Cup Turf Stakes, is setfor Sunday, July 22. It will be one of four added-money events($300,000 Dance Smartly, $125,000 Bold Venture, $125,000 Ontario Matron)on the card.
The Bison City Stakes, second gem in Canada's Triple Tiara of Racing,will now be contested at Woodbine after 27 years at Fort Erie. The$250,000 race will be coupled with the Grade 3, $200,000 Dominion DayStakes, on the Canada Day Holiday, Sunday, July 1.
The Queen's Plate, Canada's most renowned horse race and NorthAmerica's oldest continuously-run stakes event, will have its 148thrunning on Sunday, June 24 in 2007. The 1 1/4-mile classic, the firstjewel in Canada's Triple Crown of Racing, carries a $1 million purse.
Once again, the most lucrative race on the Woodbine stakes calendar isthe Grade 1 Pattison Canadian International. The $2 million turf event, along with its companion races, the Grade 1,$1 million E.P. Taylor Stakes, for grass fillies and mares, and the$500,000 Nearctic Stakes, a Grade 2 turf sprint, is set for Sunday,October 21.
The Grade 1 Woodbine Mile presented by Bell, one of the gems of theWoodbine racing season, is set for Sunday, September 16. The $1 millionevent, one of the world's most prestigious turf races, is beingsponsored by Bell for the second straight year. The 2007 renewal marksthe race's 11th running.
The Breeders' Stakes, third and turf gem of racing's Triple Crown, isset for Sunday, August 5 at Woodbine. The 1 1/2-mile turf event carriesa purse of $500,000. The middle leg of the three-race series, the$500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes, will be run at Fort Erie on Sunday,July 15.
The $500,000 Labatt Woodbine Oaks, first leg in the Canada's TripleTiara of Racing, is scheduled for Sunday, June 10 and the $200,000Scotts Highlander Stakes returns as the complement feature on Queen'sPlate day.

The entire 2007 Woodbine stakes schedule, which is subject to OntarioRacing Commission approval, follows.

$125,000 JACQUES CARTIER STAKES - Saturday, April 14
$125,000 WHIMSICAL STAKES - Sunday, April 15 (Gr. 3)
$125,000 WOODSTOCK STAKES - Saturday, April 21
$125,000 STAR SHOOT STAKES - Sunday, April 22
$150,000 VIGIL STAKES - Saturday, April 28 (Gr. 3)

$150,000 QUEENSTON STAKES - Saturday, May 5
$150,000 FURY STAKES - Sunday, May 6
$125,000 NEW PROVIDENCE STAKES - Saturday, May 12
$150,000 HENDRIE STAKES - Sunday, May 13 (Gr. 3)
$150,000 MARINE STAKES - Saturday, May 19 (Gr. 3)
$250,000 SELENE STAKES - Sunday, May 20 (Gr. 3)
$150,000 ECLIPSE STAKES - Monday, May 21 (Gr. 3)
$125,000 LADY ANGELA STAKES - Saturday, May 26
$150,000 CONNAUGHT CUP STAKES - Sunday, May 27 (Gr. 3, Turf)

$300,000 NASSAU STAKES - Saturday, June 2 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$150,000 PLATE TRIAL STAKES - Sunday, June 3
$125,000 STEADY GROWTH STAKES - Saturday, June 9
$500,000 LABATT WOODBINE OAKS STAKES - Sunday, June 10
$125,000 VICTORIA PARK STAKES - Sunday, June 10
$125,000 BOLD RUCKUS STAKES - Wednesday, June 13 (Turf)
$100,000 HILL 'N' DALE STAKES - Saturday, June 16
$125,000 VICTORIA STAKES - Sunday, June 17
$125,000 BARBADOS BALLADE STAKES - Saturday, June 23
$1,000,000 QUEEN'S PLATE STAKES - Sunday, June 24
$200,000 SCOTTS HIGHLANDER STAKES - Sunday, June 24 (Gr. 3, Turf)
$150,000 ACHIEVEMENT STAKES - Saturday, June 30

$200,000 DOMINION DAY STAKES - Sunday, July 1 (Gr. 3)
$250,000 BISON CITY STAKES - Sunday, July 1
$125,000 MY DEAR STAKES - Monday, July 2
$300,000 KING EDWARD BREEDERS' CUP - Monday, July 2 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$150,000 CLARENDON STAKES - Saturday, July 7
$150,000 ONTARIO DAMSEL STAKES - Sunday, July 8 (Turf)
$150,000 TORONTO CUP STAKES - Saturday, July 14 (Turf)
$150,000 SHADY WELL STAKES - Sunday, July 15
$500,000 PRINCE OF WALES STAKES (run at FORT ERIE) - Sunday, July 15
$125,000 DEPUTY MINISTER STAKES - Wednesday, July 18
$125,000 COLIN STAKES - Saturday, July 21
$300,000 DANCE SMARTLY STAKES - Sunday, July 22 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$125,000 BOLD VENTURE STAKES - Sunday, July 22
$125,000 ONTARIO MATRON STAKES - Sunday, July 22
$700,000 NORTHERN DANCER BREEDERS' CUP Turf - Sunday, July 22 (Gr. 2,
$125,000 PASSING MOOD STAKES - Wednesday, July 25 (Turf)
$250,000 WONDER WHERE STAKES - Saturday, July 28 (Turf)
(Gr. 3)

$125,000 NANDI STAKES - Saturday, August 4
$500,000 BREEDERS' STAKES - Sunday, August 5 (Turf)
$125,000 SHEPPERTON STAKES - Sunday, August 5
$150,000 ROYAL NORTH STAKES - Monday, August 6 (Gr. 3, Turf)
$150,000 DUCHESS STAKES - Saturday, August 11
$150,000 VANDAL STAKES - Sunday, August 12
$125,000 ONTARIO DEBUTANTE STAKES - Saturday, August 18
$125,000 VICTORIANA STAKES - Sunday, August 19 (Turf)
$200,000 PLAY THE KING STAKES - Saturday, August 25 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$300,000 NIJINSKY STAKES - Sunday, August 26 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$125,000 ETERNAL SEARCH STAKES - Wednesday, August 29

$125,000 ONTARIO COLLEEN STAKES - Saturday, September 1 (Turf)
$125,000 VICE REGENT STAKES - Sunday, September 2 (Turf)
$125,000 MUSKOKA STAKES - Monday, September 3
$125,000 SIMCOE STAKES - Monday, September 3
$125,000 ELGIN STAKES - Monday, September 3
$125,000 KENORA STAKES - Monday, September 3
$125,000 ALGOMA STAKES - Monday, September 3
$125,000 HALTON STAKES - Monday, September 3 (Turf)
$150,000 SEAWAY STAKES - Saturday, September 8 (Gr. 3)
$150,000 NATALMA STAKES -Sunday, September 9 (Gr. 3, Turf)
$125,000 LA PREVOYANTE STAKES - Saturday, September 15 (Turf)
$125,000 SWYNFORD STAKES - Saturday, September 15
$250,000 SUMMER STAKES - Sunday, September 16 (Gr. 3, Turf)
$300,000 CANADIAN STAKES - Sunday, September 16 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$1,000,000 WOODBINE MILE, presented by BELL - Sunday, September 16 (Gr.
1, Turf)
$125,000 OVERSKATE STAKES - Wednesday, September 19
$125,000 LA LORGNETTE STAKES - Saturday, September 22
$300,000 SKY CLASSIC STAKES - Sunday, September 23 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$250,000 MAZARINE BREEDERS' CUP STAKES - Saturday, September 29 (Gr.
$150,000 ONTARIO DERBY - Sunday, September 30

$125,000 VICTORIAN QUEEN STAKES - Wednesday, October 3
$150,000 CAROTENE STAKES - Saturday, October 6 (Turf)
$250,000 GREY BREEDERS' CUP STAKES - Monday, October 8 (Gr. 3)
$125,000 CLASSY'N SMART STAKES - Monday, October 8
$125,000 BULL PAGE STAKES - Saturday, October 13
$150,000 DURHAM CUP STAKES - Saturday, October 13 (Gr. 3)
$250,000 CUP & SAUCER STAKES - Sunday, October 14 (Turf)
$250,000 PRINCESS ELIZABETH STAKES - Saturday, October 20
$500,000 NEARCTIC STAKES - Sunday, October 21 (Gr. 2, Turf)
$1,000,000 E.P. TAYLOR STAKES - Sunday, October 21(Gr. 1, Turf)
$2,000,000 PATTISON CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL - Sunday, October 21 (Gr. 1,
$150,000 FANFRELUCHE STAKES - Saturday, October 27
$125,000 BUNTY LAWLESS STAKES - Sunday, October 28 (Turf)

$125,000 ONTARIO FASHION STAKES - Saturday, November 3
$250,000 CORONATION FUTURITY - Sunday, November 4
$125,000 SOUTH OCEAN STAKES - Wednesday, November 7
$175,000 MAPLE LEAF STAKES - Saturday, November 10
$150,000 JAMMED LOVELY STAKES - Sunday, November 11
$125,000 FROST KING STAKES - Wednesday, November 14
$150,000 AUTUMN STAKES - Saturday, November 17 (Gr. 3)
$125,000 KENNEDY ROAD STAKES - Sunday, November 18 (Gr.3)
$125,000 GLORIOUS SONG STAKES - Sunday, November 18
$125,000 DISPLAY STAKES - Saturday, November 24
$150,000 BESSARABIAN STAKES - Sunday, November 25

$125,000 KINGARVIE STAKES - Saturday, December 1
$150,000 ONTARIO LASSIE STAKES - Sunday, December 2
$125,000 SIR BARTON STAKES - Saturday, December 8
$125,000 VALEDICTORY STAKES - Sunday, December 9

Conrad Cohen: not enough time to “evaluate it in terms of temp.”

Good story by Tom LaMarra in Blood-Horse..


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Tuesday, February 13, 2007


Author's note: Some readers have noted the typo's on my pages in recent days (typing with one hand will do that). Thoroughblog regrets the mistakes.


Top Canadian-bred BUFFALO MAN ($190,000 2yo purchase) scored a hard-earned win the featured Championship Stakes in Ocala yesterday by 1 1/2 lengths over the useful colt Green Vegas, continuing a possible journey to the Kentucky Derby and later, the Queen's Plate.
Owned in part by NCAA basketball coach Rick Pitino and Clinton Glassock and trained by Cam Gambolati (Spend a Buck fame), Buffalo Man stalked the pace of Steelix throughout the 1 1/16 miles and then took over into the stretch and out-battled Green Vegas to the wire while drifting out under strong handling by Edgar Prado. It's a long way from Ocala to Kentucky, even Toronto, but the son of El Prado - Perfect Six (see a previous post for a pedigree analysis) is going the right direction.
Bad news for SKIP CODE, a graded SW at Woodbine last year - he finished last after breaking through the gate before the race.
BUFFALO MAN, who, according to Prado, was "looking for competition" missed the 4-year-old track record of 1:44 1/5 by one-tick.
Up next, the Fountain of Youth or Louisiana Derby.

Top Notch Lady, who has had flirted with top-class status, blew past fillies to win the Florida Breeders' Distaff by 7 lengths under Julien Leparoux. Stablemate Howaboutrightnow and jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson helped set a fast pace and they faded to 4th.
The 'Lady is by Sultry Song out of a Blade mare and is owned by the family of breeder Charles Nuckols plus Graaeme Lang.


LAWRENCE ROMAN gave BACK the money to the folks who bought a share of Lawrence the Roman before the colt's ugly display in the Whirlaway Stakes at Aqueduct last weekend. Unprecedented? Don't know - but totally bizarre. Hey the guy felt bad but take the money!! Meanwhile, maybe the horse will come back better than ever.


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Monday, February 12, 2007



The festival of racing in Ocala starts at 1:30 today and the featured race is the $100,000 Champion Stakes featuring Canadian-bred, and Thoroughblog’s number 1 horse on the hot Canadian-bred list, BUFFALO MAN (El Prado). His competition includes Canadian graded stakes winner SKIP CODE.
A local paper previews the races so check it out…


Champion 3-year-old colt in Canada SHILLELAGH SLEW opened his lungs a bit with his first prep of the year at Palm Meadows. The son of Chief Seattle worked an easy 3 furlongs in :38 2/5, his first workout since undergoing ankle surgery last fall.
It is expected that every one of last year’s champion runners in Canada will be racing in 2007.


He runs his races a weird way now but EDENWOLD was a reasonable 5th behind star colt LAWYER RON in an allowance race at Gulfstream yesterday. The colt broke sharply but then dropped way back before closing mildly. Maybe the Plate winner needs a set of blinkers to get him more motivated?

STRONACH, CLARK-ROGERS retire racehorses’s BILL FINLEY writes a little story on the retirement program set up by Frank and Freida Stronach at their farm in Ontario. Former jockey Stacie Clark-Rogers re-trains the horses and talks about how many have been placed.


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Sunday, February 11, 2007


That age-old racing motto was in full bloom yesterday at various tracks around the U.S as classic hopefuls embarked on bigger missions but failed miserably. They were dropping like flies indeed on a very messy day of Saturday racing.
Those that piled on big-time cash to show on LAWRENCE THE ROMAN, recently sold in part by his owner to other interests, aren’t big fans of the previously undefeated colt now as he plummeted through the stretch of the Whirlaway Stakes, finishing 5th.

Down at Gulfstream, champion 2yo filly of last year DREAMING OF ANNA, bobbled a bit at the start of the Old Hat Stakes, chased DREAM RUSH all the way but never looked comfortable in that hectic pursuit and faded to 3rd.
Dream Rush, oh yes, the miss who was used in an experiment in her last race when .30-1, failed miserably, and then, poof! Was sent hard to the lead yesterday and coasted home. How annoying.

Meanwhile, the pre-race hype for this filly (yes, she’s lovely and all that) was annoying if you were stuck watching the Gulfstream simulcast channel. From pre-race interviews with Frank Calabrese that involved 5 minute long, rambling questions to his one-word answers to the yo-yo who said that Calabrese and trainer Wayne Catalano had a ‘great relationship’. Good grief, everyone knows those two don’t like each other. Enough already.

Later, MEDITATIONS had to be pulled up at less than even money in the DAVONA DALE (a great racemare whose name was butchered so bad by a Woodbine-based TV commentator yesterday it was sad). No update on the filly who looked so good in her 2 previous wins. CHRISTMAS KID, by Lemon Drop Kid, was the winner and she’s obviously a very good one.

It was brought to my attention that the rail continues to play golden at Aqueduct and SUMMER DOLDRUMS zoomed up the one-path to win the WHIRLAWAY by open lengths for trainer Rick Violette (of Dream Rush fame) and Klaravich Stables. Wait for it….. 106 Beyer! Inflated? Perhaps a little because of the trip.
His sire is sizzling STREET CRY and the mare, Dance for Dixie, is by Unaccounted For.

Over at Fair Grounds, you can’t be too hard on CIRCULAR QUAY for his 5th place finish in the Risen Star since he swerved to avoid a fallen rival leaving the last turn. He will be back. The winner, NOTIONAL (93 Beyer) , is owned by Canadian, Paul Reddam, and the colt was super impressive in his win from his wide post. Sire – In Excess, dam – Truly Blessed by French Deputy.
The girls went a touch faster in the 1 1/16 mile Silverbulletday Stakes and APPEALING ZOPHIE (93)benefited from a great ride by her jock John Velazquez to win after a front end journey.


WELCOME AGAIN was a bust in the Mineshaft Stakes even if it was realistic to think he could beat MASTER COMMAND (110 Beyer!) A wide trip didn’t help either but he finished last.

MARCHFIELD looked like a sure winner in that little maiden race at one-mile at GP but the A.P. Indy Canadian bred blew his lead late and was 2nd to a Nick Zito trained colt who would have been 10 to 1 had he not been in an entry. Marchfield ran an 80 Beyer, his best of his career so that’s good. But Queen’s Plate looks more realistic than a Derby of the Kentucky variety.
Marchfield’s owner/breeder Eugene Melnyk must have been pleased with the first start for OISTINS BAY, a Canadian-bred by Deputy Minister – Dante’s Mary by Boston Harbor (the mare is an unraced ½ sister to superstar sprinter/miler LEFT BANK). It was a messy trip for the colt from the rail as he broke a bit slowly, rushed up the rail, waited and then chased home the heavy fave, STRRET MAGICIAN (more Street Cry).

Better news at Turfway Park…COBRADOR, who was such a flop in the Coronation Futurity Stakes last Nov. at Woodbine in his first non-turf outing, was a closing second in his 3yo debut in the $50,000 WEBN Stakes at Turfway. He earned a 77 Beyer Figure. Bred by, who else, Adena Springs, Cobrador is yet another good one by El Prado and his dam is Dynamite Diablo, by Diablo.
Maiden JIMMY G. (68) has a lot to learn but the Forest Camp 3yo was a belated 2nd at Aqueduct yesterday as a heavy fave. Has lots of upside even of he does run with that really low head carriage.

Other Canadian bred winners included the Trajectory gelding SAIL THE MYSTIC, who won for $16,000 claiming at Aqueduct yesterday (69 Beyer), FAIRWELL MADRID (Sefapiano –I’m Selective, Mi Selecto) who won a turf allowance at Sam Houston on Friday night, hey,, this gal was winning at Fort Erie for $4,000 claiming in Oct. but has won three races since heading to Sammy Houston at the grass. She’s gone from a 50’s Beyer gal to and ‘80s gal.

Reader MIKE K. asked in yesterday's post about LEONNATUS ANTEAS, Canada's champion 2yo colt of last year. Latest report on the undefeated colt is that he's swimming somewhere in Florida. Not sure if the horse is 'sore' but he sure was lame after last 2 stakes scores last fall. Thoroughblog will try and find out more this week.

Fellow blogger John ('Not too swift') has been keeping a neat Blog on Birdbirdistheword, who had a workout yesterday (on the same day as a horse named Bird is the Word worked. ha ha).

What's on today - EDENWOLD, the Plate winner from last year gets a bit of class relief but is meeting Lawyer Ron in that Gulfstream allowance. PATRICK HUSBANDS has re-surfaced and will ride him. Trainer of the year for 2006, MARK CASSE can't wait to see how SAFETY ZONE does in that really tough allowance race - race 7 on the GP card.
Remember, tomorrow is OBS racing day with lots of neat stuff including several Canadian horses and people. Thoroughblog had a link to the entries on a recent post.


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Saturday, February 10, 2007



Okay there are a ton of cool races today with Derby hopefuls and for us Canadians, lots of locals running but for betting purposes, have a turn at deciphering the SUPER STAKES at Tampa today. Eeks, big field, tons of speed and quality runners.
Assuming I stll have ammunition by the 10th at Tampa, I may bet D’ARTAGNANSSPIRIT, unless his odds are less that 5 to 2 and the possibly-over-the-top BIG LOVER. Look at ABOVE THE WIND in the race just for inspiration – 10-years-old, 20 wins in 61 starts and he almost won this race last year.


Woodbine jocks Emma-Jayne Wilson and Gerry Olguin are at Fair Grounds today for the Risen Star Stakes. The former is on Sugar Bowl Stakes winner Teuflesberg, a speedster who appears to have distance limitations and the latter is on SPANKEY COME HOME, who has had steering limitations.
‘Spankey’ unofficially won his maiden at 20 to 1 at Santa Anita last month but was disqualified for bearing out into the stretch. The improving Came Home colt has come back to work a huge 7 furlongs in 1:24 3/5.

RISEN STAR NOTE – Watch out for IMAWILDANDCRAZYGUY, whose trainer William Kaplan already struvk with a 3yo in a stakes at long odds this year.


Stronach Stables’ WELCOME AGAIN (Awesome Again) is considered the second best selection in the Mineshaft Stakes earlier on the Fair Grounds card. As a THOROUGHBLOG reader noted, the colt’s Beyer was recently upped to 103 from his Gulfstream win
MASTER COMMAND, the impressive looking favourite with a white face and muzzle, is going to be tough to beat but the Canadian colt could be on his way now.

Small field but SPORTS TOWN is green, still learning and loaded with ability. The question is, how good is LARRY (Lawrence the Roman), the New York-bred by Point Given. Pretty good it seems.


DREAMING OF ANNA in the Old Hat at Gulfstream today, sure, looks solid. But as was addressed last month in this forum, DREAM RUSH had one of the worst trips of the meeting in her last start when her trainer decided to, oh yeah, teach her how to rate. Ugh.


JIMMY G., owned by Silver-Rudd Stables and trained by Rick Violette, is a contender in race 4 at Aqueduct. The Forest Camp – Sea Witch, by Sea Hero colt was bred by trainer Edward Freeman et al.


Milhouse asked a question attached to yesterday’s post about Queen’s Plate contenders. So much may change even after today but how could I not pick the regally-bred TWILIGHT METEOR, from the Todd Pletcher stable? Pletcher has won the Plate before…Archers Bay. But Mark Casse-trainee MARCHFIELD sure is interesting at GP today…

Canadian trainers around the ovals…MARK FOURNIER was a good 8-28 through earlier this week at Sam Houston, John Simms is 1 for 24 at Tampa.
READE BAKER reports that stakes winners VESTREY LADY and TOTHEMOONANDBACK are training again in Florida. Baker also likes his unraced Gilded Time 3yo GOLDEN GLADE.

Did a horse named COLLISION really clip heels and fall at Gulfstream yesterday? Question Mark


  • At 8:51 AM, Blogger John (AKA Not Too Swift) said…

    Nice job on TOTW over at Equidaily. Thanks for the Birdbird link too!!

  • At 2:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hello Jen:

    Love your blog,just wanted to post a comment to you and your viewers on Queens Plate Picks, theres been alot of talk lately about horses such as Buffalo Man,Easterman, Marchfield, High Act,and Twilight Meteor to mention a few, but what about the Coronation winner Leonnatus Anteas. This horse has proven alot already but not much is being said about him, is he in training somewhere? I had read that you said he was sore, is that part of the reason why nobodys talking about him. Anyways, he's my pick and just wanted to find out what he was up to.

    Mike K.


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Friday, February 09, 2007



MARCHFIELD, a blue-blooded 3yo who is a Canadian-bred with the Queen’s Plate or perhaps the Kentucky Derby as a goal, makes his season debut tomorrow at Gulfstream in race 4.
The colt is by A.P. Indy out of Pico Tenerrife, by Red Ransom and was stakes placed in his 2nd start last year at Woodbine.
The field is a small, quality group and also in the race is IMPENDING, bred by Kinghaven Farms, who is making his debut. The Thunder Gulch – Light Show colt is a half-brother to Three in the Bag, who was on the Canadian classic trail 2 years ago.
Canadian Morgan Firestone owns and David Bell trains.
Todd Pletcher ttrains Melynk’s ‘other’ Canadian-brd Plate hope who competes in race 6.
OISTINS BAY drew the rail in the sprint race and is a homebred son of Deputy Minister out of Dante’s Mary by Boston Harbor.
A sup card at Gulfstream includes the 3yo debut of DREAMING OF ANNA, who used the Summer S. at Woodbine as a prep for her win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvrnile Fillies and a championship trophy at the Eclipse Awards.


Equidaily’s TOTW addresses women and getting them to come to the track to bet. THOROUGHBLOG had a chance to be involved and the other participants had some very good comments and ideas. TOTW is currently at the top of the page.


Another exceptional write-up by Andrew Beyer in the Washington Post, Daily Racing Form this week talks about Gulfstream and why racing fans have to allow themselves to be 2nd in line behind those very strange slots players.



  • At 11:01 AM, Blogger Milhouse said…

    With Marchfield racing tomorrow and with Winter barring down on us as we speak in the Greater Toronto Area, I thought it would be fun to toss out this question. Let's think of warmer thoughts and the 2007 Queen's Plate. If you had to pick your Queen's Plate winner right now who would it be? Now obviously your opinion will change as we get closer to race date and see the participants develop from 2 year olds to 3 year olds. So I guess the best way to pose this question would be... If you could own one Plate eligible horse right now, who would it be and why do you think they have what it takes to win the Plate? I will start with mine. I am going with Mike DePaulo's Easterman. This son of Smart Strake is out of a Green Dancer mare named Green Noble. She has produced Sir Frederick who was 2nd in the Valedictory Stakes (bonus marks for distance) and Noble Strike who was stakes placed on the turf and dirt. Easterman’s lone 2 year old start came late in the season going 7 furlongs. He ran greenly on the day, but still looked ultra impressive in winning. He was to face allowance company on the final day of racing at Woodbine for 2006 but was scratched. As Jen told you earlier, he is currently training at Palm Meadows in Florida and is scheduled to have at least one start at Gulfstream before heading up to Woodbine. I think the future is bright for this guy, and thus I have made him my February Plate pick. The scary thing is, he may even be better on the grass!

  • At 1:49 PM, Blogger Kennedy said…

    Just thought I'd give you the heads up that Welcome Again's Beyer was upped to 103 for his GP win.

  • At 2:59 PM, Anonymous john ronan said…

    Getting women to the track is one of the themes of the new documentary: WOMEN IN AMERICAN HORSE RACING. It is a cliche that girls fall in love with horses, but by the time they are women they are far, mentally and economically, from thinking of racing. But racing will have to go after them because they make family decisions on the entertainment dollar. By the way, the documentary gives a nod to Emma Wilson and her Woodbine titles, using pix that John Siscos provided.


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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Everyone's goin to OBS


Citing a long trip from Florida, the toughness of the field not to mention the 14 post, trainer Cam Gambolati will scratch BUFFALO MAN from the Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds Saturday and instead run him in the Ocala Breeders Champion Stakes on Monday. Buffalo Man will be ridden by Edgar Prado in Ocala (they are non-betting races) and will start from post 4.
Also in the field of 14 is SKIP CODE, one of Canada’s best 2yos of 2006. Pat Husbands returns from Barbados to ride the Mark Casse trainee, who is owned by Charles Laloggia.

Casse has two gals in the FLORIDA BREEDERS DISTAFF which drew just 6 entries. Grade stakes winner TOP NOTCH LADY has Emma-Jayne Wilson on board and stakes winner HOWABOUTRIGHTNOW, will be guided by Julien Leparoux.

Jockey Richard Dos Ramos will ride the Arthur Silver trained speedster PETE’S WONDER in the day’s second event, the colts Sprint Stakes and WONDER TIME in the Champion Stakes for 3yo fillies at 1 1/16 miles.

For the entries and past performances, go here...

The 2yo sale at OBS begins Tuesday. A fun little visit to the videos of some of the workouts resulted in me finding hip 2, a Canadian-bred filly who looked awesome in a :21 2/5 prep. Yikes.


Okay, you would have to be close to my age to get that pun. Anyway VOULEZ VOUS, a Canadian-bred 3yo filly by Elusive Quality out of the former Sam-Son Farms-owned Gather the Storm (by Storm Cat) won her maiden at Santa Anita yesterday with a 90 Beyer Figure at 5 ½ furlongs.
Like her mum, Voulez Vous is a rocketship, although mum was quite flighty, raced only once and finished 7th.
Voulez Vous was bred by Bob Anderson and Rod Ferguson and she is owned by Magnier, Tabor et al. She sneaks into the Hot Canadian-bred list today (look to the right!)


Owner/breeder Stuart Hyman and Windfields Farms’ Berbard McCormack contacted Thoroughblog yesterday to say that on Feb 6, Hyman’s mare Gold Crystal (AUS), A Group 3 winner, delivered a filly by Australian sensation Redoute’s Choice. It is the first offspring of the leading sire, who stands for $275,000 AUS, to be foaled in North America.
“The foal is bay with a white blaze and 2 hind socks. She's alert and already zooming around the stall. Mom is well and will bred back to Henny Hughes.”
Redoute's Choice is a son of the outstanding Northern Dancer stallion Danehill.
For more on Redoute’s Choice, check out


Young trainer Jody Hammett has three legitimate contenders in three separate races at Gulfstream today. Hammett, who is 2-0-2 with 11 starters at the meet is dropping Johnny Hollywood down to $8,000 claiming in the 1st race, has the maiden Morning Glory looking good in race 2 and the speedy Cup Fever in race 6.
In race 3, Canadian-bred Miss Bradford Co., on the cusp of sneaking into the Thoroughblog Hot Canadian-bred list, is a logical player.
And for pedigree buffs, Chiefswood Farm will start its unraced 4yo filly SAVE THAT SONG in race 10. The Rahy filly is out of stakes placed Savethelastdance (Nureyev), who is the dam of Queen’s Plate winner NIIGON.


EVER SHIFTING, who was the most expensive 2yo purchase before that Monkey guy came along, is making his 2nd start today. He is at Aqueduct with trainer Tom Albertrani. $5.2 million colt finished far back in his debut.


Canadian-bred, Queen’s Plate hopeful TWILIGHT METEOR (Smart Strike – One Over Prime, by With Approval) has had slow easy breezes this winter but just about ‘bulleted’ yesterday at Palm Meadows – 1:02 2/5. Only one tick from the bullet that morning.
Trained by Todd Pletcher, the Polytrack stakes winner is from the red-hot family of his 2nd dam PRIMARILY, dam of this winter’s Grade 1 winner CITRONNADE as well as WHISKEY WISDOM, PRIMALY and POETICALLY. Sizzling pedigree and good 2--turn, 2yo form makes him an early Plate fave.


  • At 2:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Voulez Vous was euthanized after the La Habra Stakes at Santa Anita on Mar 4. RIP.


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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Ambitious Arravale

Hard to believe I can write this much one hand... thanks to everyone who has been emailing! Please let me know if I can can use them or any info sent in them on the Blog. No emails will be reprinted without author's permission.

Today's bits....

Bob Costigan, owner of Canada’s Horse of the Year ARRAVALE writes in from Dubai to say that the big filly is doing well…

Arravale is doing very well she had a nice holiday with the sun on her
back at Payson Park. She is about to start back into light training. We
will be planning an ambitious program for her this year with her major
goals being the Breeders Cup and were we to get an invite the Hong Kong
Cup in Dec. I should think she will start to show up on the work sheets
in 30 to 45 days. We hope to race her at Woodbine at least once.


Bob Costigan also emphasized that Canadians looking for a career in the racing/breeding industry should seriously consider Darley Flying Start, a two-year educational program that has a free tuition and a living allowance. The best horsepeople in the world will teach trainees all over the world the aspects of the breeding and racing industry. A super website tells you how to join and what to expect –


Emma-Jayne Wilson has a bruised leg but is good to go for this week at Fair Grounds. Woodbine’s leading rider fell off her mount who had broken down on Monday. Regular updates on Woodbine jockeys this winter can be found on the Woodbine website.


I received a lovely e-mail from Tammy Balaz, president of Sam-Son Farms yesterday with regards to the death of her star gelding QUIET RESOLVE.
Be certain this was an emotional loss for the family who held Quiet Resolve close to their hearts. They did everything they could to keep the horse alive and happy living on the farm. Once again it is so cool to hear about racehorse owners and their dedication and loyalty to their horses once they are no longer able to race.

(Photo at right was borrowed through Google Images and
Speaking of photos - QUIET RESOLVE is the fellow you see in giant-size on the wall over the bank machine on the 2nd floor of the Woodine grandstand, across from the Finish Line bar. So we can look at him everyday!

Sam-Son figures to have some real beauties again this year. Check out this one - DANCE WITH DOVES, by A.P. Indy and the first foal of champion DANCETHRUTHEDAWN, This 3yo filly worked 5 furlongs at Sa-Son in Ocala in 1:06 yesterday.

Also in the mail box was a letter from KRISTA KOCOT of KINGSGATE STUD in Thorold, Ontario (towards Niagara Falls). Krista stands the beautiful stallion LEGAL JOUSTING at her farm and you can view him as his first foals (yearlings of 2007) on her website
Legal Jousting offers an intriguing pedigree line as he is the only stallion (at least according to my research) in North America by Indian Ridge, that super Euro-sire whose offspring include a couple of Breeders’ Cup Mile winners – Ridgewood Pearl and Domedriver, a Canadian International winner – Relaxed Gesture – Group 1 winning sprinter Compton Place and a total of 71 stakes winners.
Indian Ridge (Ahonoora – Hillbrow) was a Group 2 winning sprinter and Legal Jousting was a Group 3 placed miler who won an allowance race at Calder racecourse in Florida after arriving from Ireland. The bright bay was also 3rd in the Fort Marcy ‘Cap-G3 to Strategic Mission and Pine Dance as a 4yo.
Legal Jousting’s dam is the impeccably bred In Anticipation, by Sadler’s Wells out of Grade 1 winner Aptostar (by Fappiano). In Anticipation is the dam of Group 3 winner Irresistible Jewel and stakes winner Diamond Trim.
Interesting pedigree-cross for anyone looking for something classy and unique.

Raptors fans - the LEAFS aren't doing too bad either - 5 consecutive wins!


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Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Goodbye to Lumpy, Buffalo trip may be bumpy

Quirky QUIET RESOLVE did not have the smoothest galloping stride (he was often called ‘lumpy’ around the barn) and he sure was not the most beautiful horse Sam-Son Farms has ever bred and raced but the gelding did have one huge asset – his heart.
Canada’s Horse of the Year of 2000 was euthanized Feb. 1 after injuring himself while trying to stand following colic surgery. The gelding was living out his retirement, as other Sam-Son stars do, at the farm in Milton, Ontario.
Quiet Resolve was best known for being placed first, at 50-1, in the 1999 Atto Mile-G1 at Woodbine in just his seventh career start after Hawksley Hill was disqualified when his jockey Pat Day inadvertently hit another horse with his whip.
Jockey Robert Landry rode Quiet Resolve to that smashing 2nd-placed 1st Atto run.
Another big moment for the plain bay was his brave runner-up placing to Kalanisi in the Breeders’ Cup Turf in 2000 at Churchill Downs.
“I thought we were home free,” said jockey Shane Sellers, who rode Quiet Resolve in the turf and had the gelding in front until very late in the 1 ½ mile turf race. The gelding’s best career Beyer Figure of 109 came in the Turf.
The year 2000 was a rollercoaster emotionally for Sam-Son. Its leader, Ernie Samuel passed away in May and did not get to see the farm’s runners collecting over $5 million in earnings.
Quiet Resolve hated soft turf and 12 furlongs was the outer limit of his ability but he proved to be a good fit internationally on the turf front, winning races such as the Grade 2 Dixie Handicap (May, 2000) at Pimlico racecourse in Baltimore, Maryland.
He won the Grade 2 King Edward Gold Cup, the Connaught Cup- G3 and Hong Konh Jockey Club-G2 and won 10 of 31 starts, placed in 10 other races and earned $2,346,768.
The 12-year-old was a son of Affirmed out of Quiet Cleo by Sam-Son’s stallion No Louder.


Eeks, Thoroughblog’s number 1 Hot Canadian-bred, BUFFALO MAN, got roped into starting from post position 14 in the Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds on Saturday, a notable stepping stone on the way to the Kentucky Derby.
The son of El Prado is also coming off a little illness so his first 2 turn test is going to be a tricky one.
In the Mineshaft Stakes, the exciting WELCOME AGAIN, also prominent on the Canadian-bred list, is scheduled to compete against the mighty MASTER COMMAND, from the Todd Pletcher barn.
Josie Carroll trainee BUREAUCRATIC, a Ky-bred, is cross-entered in the Mineshaft and Fair Grounds Breeders Cup and this stretch is sitting on a big race.


Waiting to hear update on Woodbine’s leading rider, Emma-Jayne Wilson, who fell from her mount in the 9th race yesterday at FG. Wilson was complaining of pain in her leg and rib area. She is named on a litany of horses through Saturday including the good TEUFLESBERG in the Risen Star.


In just 5 days, Woodbine’s Polytrack surface re-opens for training, not long after the season ended amidst concerns that the surface was not handling the cold temperatures. Turfway has struggled with its Polytrack for a year now. Check out for the latest newsstory on Turfway’s tinkering with Poly.


Recent 5 furlongs bullet workouts for PIPERS THUNDER who won last year’s Plate Trial Stakes and 2yo stakes winner VIBANK, who has not raced since last May as a 3yo.


  • At 11:02 PM, Anonymous QQ said…

    So sad about Quiet Resolve - thanks for the summary of his career. Hope the arm feels better; you're typing great for a one-hander!


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Monday, February 05, 2007

Moody Monday

A pile of bills beside my computer is getting higher than the frozen icebergs that used to be fluffy snowbanks outside. Good grief -30 with the wind chill and the house just isn’t getting warm.
Lucky (unlucky) for me, I am housebound these days with a cast on one hand/arm, the result of a much needed carpal tunnel procedure.

TRIPLE CROWN nominations being released is neat to review though, a bit warming when you think of all the cool racing and horses to look forward to.
CANADIAN-breds on the list are:
BUFFALO MAN (El Prado), DAN MCGREW (Smart Strike), COBRADOR (El Prado), MARCHFIELD (A.P. Indy), OISTINS BAY (Deputy Minister), PIRATE’S LEGEND (Perigee Moon), REATA’S ROCKET (Cape Canaveral), SEASIDE LINKS (Street Cry), TWILIGHT METEOR (Smart Strike), UNCONSTRAINED (Touch Gold), UPJUMPEDABOOGIEMAN (Touch Gold).

MILHOUSE writes about his COLTS, okay so my Football picks might be as dicey as my racing picks… eeks. Forget that though how ‘bout those TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS??

As far as Queen’s Plate winterbook odds (when are we going to be able to bet on this thing?), noms for the Triple Crown closed on the 1st I believe, so I should be supplied with a list this week. Odds will likely come out early March.

At the risk of dragging this thing out, it’s incredible to me how unfeeling and evil people can be. Anyone who didn’t get immersed in this Tj Simers business last week are lucky. It’s ugly now. Yes, the emails this loser has received are quite ridiculous, racing people have lost their minds but that’s just the passion talking. What about all the people involved in racing whether it be writing, media, management who also could care less about the horse? Believe me there are A LOT of them out there. But it’s no reason to threaten harm or death in an email. Just feel sorry for people like Simers and those at your local track who don’t get it either.
I know I will.
Here’s a piece from Steve Davidowitz…

If you believe the philosophy of Los Angeles Times Sports Columnist T.J. Simers, who implied in his column the day after Barbaro died, that no race horse should have any more impact on human concern than a squirrel or a rabbit getting splattered as road kill, then you should own no pets, or be involved with any life form other than your self.
If you side with Simers, you probably should feel ashamed to have spent energy thinking about Barbaro, much less rooting for his survival against steep odds. According to Simers you were wasting valuable emotion when a sinking feeling came over you when you learned there was no longer any hope for this horse.
Clearly Mr. Simers and those who feel the same, can not accept the fact that horse racing has been a part of civilized cultures around the world for dozens of centuries. Clearly Mr. Simers sees no special connection to the beautifully proportioned Thoroughbred racehorse and the electric, sometimes improbable feats of speed and stamina that so many owners, breeders and racing fans forever can recall from memory.
Despite the occasional callousness that creeps into the racetrack game, despite the drug related problems horse racing shares with all professional (and amateur) sports, it is a documented fact that the vast majority of people who work with Thoroughbreds at every level treat them to the best nutrition, the best preventive medical care in the animal kingdom.
Should those who think horse racing is a misguided way to deal with horses, they should realize that Barbaro would not have existed at all without the sport, nor would Secretariat, or Man o’ War, or the most magnificent of the breed. Beyond the bets won and lost, beyond the roller coaster ride we were all on with Barbaro these past eight months, the world itself would be poorer for the lack of his amazing performance in the Kentucky Derby and the connection so many felt with him.
Equally important, Barbaro’s last eight months of life at the New Bolton Center, will have consequences for dozens of years. Just as the death of Ruffian in the 1975 match race with Foolish Pleasure led to advances in veterinary medicine that gave Barbaro a chance to survive, so too from Barbaro will come better handling of fractures and possibly better handling of laminitis.
At the very least, he is likely to inspire millions of dollars of donations to the New Bolton Center for Equine Research which needs all the help it can get.
In the meantime, Mr. Simers was 100 percent correct when he stated one obvious fact in his L.A. Times’ column: “I just don’t get it,” he said.
No indeed, Mr. Simers and those who look through his narrow and distorted perspective do not get it at all. That is their loss; Barbaro is ours. END

I recently exchanged e-mails with a woman who wrote a piece in the Rochester something-or other on how racing should be banned. She totally didn’t it at all, either.
Bah. Happy Monday.

**Check out some of my links for local farms, the really cool Photo Café program that grabs your pics during a screensaver or my fellow Bloggers!


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Sunday, February 04, 2007

You Have to be Kidding!

That's the theme of a wide range of news and notes this morning after a wild day of racing action from east to west to south and up to the north. Brrrrr, it's -30 C with the wind chill this morning.
Super Bowl Sunday no. 41 will have everyone's attention today - Bears are the pick.

Anyway, INVASOR was simply stunning in his first start as the latest HORSE OF THE YEAR. It's easy to understand what his rider Fernando Jara was doing by keeping the big stallion stuck to the fence all the way through the Donn H. but what a disaster from the 1/4 pole to inside the 16th.
Lacking room on the last turn, Jara then had to check Invasor hard, the pair almost fell down and then after Hesanoldsalt scampered away to get the jump on the champ, Invasor turned it on when he was clear and blew past without feeling the whip. Yikes.
Jara looks like a cool customer and that's what you want in a rider but kid, it's time to get better with your English..okay?

Looked like an inside, speed bias at GP yesterday but you can't knock some performances. ADORE THE GOLD won the Swale with an inside speed style and he is a son of one of the all-time fastest Canadian-breds - FORMAL GOLD. Canadian-bred REATA'S ROCKET was a wide and even 4th in the Swale while American colt Cowtown Cat had little chance in a bounce situation especially since he was hard ridden all the way as if he was in a quarter horse race.

Speed has been tough on the GP turf too and the impressive-looking GIANT WRECKER was super game to win the Can. Turf 'Cap. Canadian star JAMBALAYA looked awesome pre-race, having filled out nicely over the winter and prancing right into the gate. The gelding ran very well in a hurried situation as he was asked to stay close all the way and he only stalled a bit late to land 3rd. Can't wait to see him back at Woodbine! (Eugene Melnyk's Host ran hard to rally for 2nd while turf champ of 2006, Miesque's Approval was a flat 5th).

Holy moly! NOBIZ LIKE SHOBIZ wasn't pretty but he held up his early favoritism (in some circles) to win the Holy Bull in front running fashion, getting away with a :47.00 half mile. The colt lugged in greenly throughout the stretch run but lasted over Drums of Thunder, who had an impressive rally.

In the 'Bounce Bin' is NOTTAWASAGA , a Kentucky-bred, Canadian-owned gal who was a creditable 4th in the Suwanee River Cap after a good trip. Look for this miss to be a major threat no matter where she runs next.

In the 10th at GP, Queen's Plate hopefuls had mixed results. Stronach Stables' HIGH ACT ran a green, but strong race in the 9 furlong event. The colt was between horses all the way in a chasing mode, slipped back 2-wide on the turn, angled out and then came on strong again to miss 3rd by a head. He galloped out in front. Such a good race at that distance in Feb. means this son of El Prado (same sire as top Can. 3yo Buffalo Man) from the mare Class (by Thunder Gulch) is a serious Plate threat.
Also in the race (which was won by a 135-1 shot by the way, oops) was Ontario-bred SEASIDE LINKS who was very rank much of the way and then out of gas by the last turn. Might be better on the grass.

When was the last time the famous turquoise and gold-dotted silks of the famed WINDFIELDS FARM were in the winner'c circle? Not sure - perhaps as far back as 1994 with Acadia. Well, UNTO THE HILLS won for Windfields' Noreen Taylor yesterday at Fair Grounds thanks to a beautiful ride by Emma Jayne Wilson. Trained by Malcolm Pierce, Unto the Hills is by Mt. Livermore and was a weanling purchase.

Too bad we can't end yesterday's news with just good-feeling stuff but... here we go again. Remember COTTONMOUTH, who had suspicious form before he broke a leg at GP last month?Well, yesterday's 5th race (and last as the card was cancelled) was sad. Pre-race, Jan Rushton (commentator) said [sic] "warning flags" were up with favoured CADILLAC CRUISER, a former Stronach-owned horse who had won 6 of 15 starts, had huge Beyer Figures but was suddenly dropping from starter allowances for $25,000 claiming and up to $7,500. Turning into the backstretch, the horse broke his leg. A horse who fell over him, JIMMY O, broke his neck and died. I assume the Cruiser died as well.
Oh ya, the races were not cancelled because of the horse breaking a leg, they were cancelled because the jockeys were mad at what hospital they were being sent to.
Canadian-bred old-timer COOL N COLLECTIVE also ran over the stricken horse but stayed on to be 3rd while his rider did not abuse the 10yo.
Sheesh, is someone going to tell us that Cadillac Cruiser 'didn't have a pimple on him"?

Later this morning, THOROUGHBLOG will check on what's happening today around the tracks.


  • At 12:35 AM, Blogger Milhouse said…

    Speaking of the Queen's Plate, when will the Winter Book for 2007 be released? I'm really looking forward to this years Plate, as last years 2 year olds in Canada showed a great deal of talent.

    Oh...and Jen, how about them COLTS!


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