ascot aug08
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Friday, February 29, 2008


This is the 5th Friday in the month of February - it's been 28 years since that happened!


*The POLL has changed...last one said that most of you are okay with synthetic tracks but more studying needs to be done on it.

UPDATE 10:27 A.M.

Some QUEEN'S PLATE CONTENDERS RACE TODAY - Fair Grounds turf allowance (turf?) includes PALMERS and KNOTTY KNOTTY.

SILVER JAG in last at Gulfstream.


If you got a chance to see Curlin’s Dubai race yesterday just after noon, it was fun to watch unless you have a horse that will race against him in the DUBAI WORLD CUP.

Okay, so he likely beat very modest rivals yesterday but the colt had the reins shook at him just once by a very, very confident Robby Albarado and that was all that was needed for the win.

The son of Canadian-bred SMART STRIKE will meet Asiatic Boy, Happy Boy and Spring at Last in the World Cup in a few weeks. He's 1 to 2 in the early odds in some betting shops.

Here’s a story from overseas…


From The Herald, UK


A larger than usual audience at Nad Al Sheba was treated to a very special performance from Curlin, the world's top-rated horse, who oozed class on his debut in Dubai to take the Jaguar Trophy.

Successful in the Preakness Stakes, second stage of the American Triple Crown at Pimlico, and Breeders' Cup Classic, the colt never came out of third gear under jockey Robby Albarado to beat Saeed Bin Suroor's Familiar Territory.

Trained by Steve Asmussen, the four-year-old will now go for the Dubai World Cup, in which, on yesterday's showing, he will be very hard to beat.

Afterwards, Albarado was full of praise for the American horse. He said: "It was a terrific performance. We just wanted to get it done as easily as possible and save as much for the World Cup as possible. I think we did that.

"Hopefully he comes back healthy and we can do the same thing at the end of March in the World Cup. I went wide down the back straight early because I just wanted him to settle, he's been off a while and he needed this race. He's a very relaxed horse. He is the best horse in the world."

Coral were out of the traps very swiftly, cutting Curlin to 1-2 (from 11-8) for the Dubai World Cup. A spokesman for the firm said: "Curlin proved last year what a class act he is, and he looks as good as ever this year, and without any doubt will take all the beating in the World Cup."

The Scottish-trained Big Timer ran his best race in four attempts during the Dubai Carnival meeting when he finished second in the opening £60,000 handicap. Big Timer is trained near Carluke by Ian Semple.

He seemed to have every chance entering the home straight but the winner, Mutamarres, won decisively in the hands of Richard Hills.

Frankie Dettori was out of luck at the last Carnival fixture but gave his fans something to shout about with victory in the Ferrari-sponsored second race.

It had been anticipated that Dettori's mount, With Interest, would have gone off favourite but that was not the case, with Ryan Moore on top-weight Sishisan the best backed, but With Interest won well in the colours of Godolphin.

Dettori kicked for home a long way out on Dijeer in the Zabeel Mile, a decision that looked to have paid off close home, but Ted Durcan, who is having a profitable time in Dubai, swooped late and fast on the Alan Jarvis-trained Wise Dennis to take the prize.

Saeed Bin Suroor, who trained With Interest and Cocoa Beech, completed a treble when Third Set, which was ridden by Dettori.

* Dubai World Cup, 1m 4f, Nad Al Sheba (Coral betting) 1-2 (from 11-8) Curlin, 6 Asiatic Boy, 7 Happy Boy, 9 Spring At Last, 12 Literato, 14 Vermilion, 16 Jalil, 20 Lucky Find, 25 Latency, Well Armed, 33 others


ZARAD a popular pick, JONO JONES rides ITZMO

Here is the field in post position order and some of my own notes.

Woodbine jockey JONO JONES is in the big race. RICHARD DOS RAMOS rides many races on the big card also.

Laurandal - Gengoul Didier;

Representing Martinique, French-bred 6yo gelding by Pelder

Favorite Player - Chris Husbands;

Capsulite - Louis-Phillipe Beuzelin;

Representing Martinque

My Man - Rico Walcott;

Representing Martinique, by Anabaa

Pure Temptation - Andy Ward;

Itzmo - Jono Jones;

Mark of Esteem 7yo gelding

Zarad - Paul Leacock;

By Selkirk, a Barbados starter

Demonsalsa - Luana Lalung; filly by Kingsalsa

Also from Martinique

Apostle – A Trotman, multiple stakes in Barbados

Son of Canadian-bred stallion BANDSMAN

Duc D Fer - Juan Crawford; Barbados

Storm Street - Desmond Bryan;

From Trinidad/Tobago, raced against maiden claimers at Woodbine for trainer Greg deGannes, by Street Cry-Stormy Blues

Who's Wavering - Keven Nichols; from Barbados

Whiskey For Me (scratched) – won race last year


Apostle gets into Gold Cup

Web Posted - Fri Feb 29 2008

Many race fans were hoping that the creole Apostle would have been picked to run in the Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup, but he was only chosen as the second reserve, and it looked very much like there was no hope for him to get into the final 12 to face starter Mark Batson.

However, at declaration time yesterday that changed, as the connections of Sharp Impact elected to take their chances in The V Sandy Lane Spa Sprint Stakes & Trophy, to be run over 1 100 metres, while the connections of last years Gold Cup winner, Whisky For Me, decided not to race him.

With these two horses out, it let in reserve one, Pure Temptation, and reserve two, Apostle. With Apostle, a very strong front-runner now in the race, one can expect the Garrison Savannah to be packed tomorrow, as he carries a large following.

His task will not be an easy one, if he hopes to join Incitatus and Federico as creole winners of the race, as he will have to contend with the faithful old mare, Whos Wavering who, at eight years old, still likes to run at the front end.

The other reserve that has made it to the final 12 is Pure Temptation, an improving type, who would more than likely be just off the early pace and closing during the last few furlongs.

With these two now in, it definitely adds even more to what should be a very competitive race, and leaving numerous questions to be answered tomorrow, such as: Can a creole again win the Gold Cup?, Can Martinique, or Trinidad & Tobago come up with another winner?Can Aysha Syndicate, and trainer Liz Deane make it two straight?Can Sir David Seale add another Gold Cup to his collection, or can Gay Smith land another? Can veteran trainer Clayton Greenidge saddle another Gold winner, or will an owner, jockey, or trainer who has never won the Gold Cup make this their first?

Tomorrow’s race may yet turn out to be one of the most exciting Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup races for quite a while.

From the Niagara Falls Review

Owners lining up to race at Fort track


Last week, the Fort Erie Race Track announced there will indeed be live racing this year.

On Thursday, the track confirmed they have enough horses to run the races.

Track spokesman Daryl Wells said more than 1,000 applications have been received for stalls at the track so far with the possibility of more coming in still.

That's fewer than the 1,400 applications the track had at this time last year - but welcome news, considering it wasn't until last week that track owner Nordic Gaming confirmed it was committed to 80 days of live racing this season.

"Right now, we're looking at about 1,030 horses to be stabled at Fort Erie this year," Wells said. "That could go a little more or a little less, but we're quite happy with the applications. We're quite comfortable going in - not elated - but it looks like we're going to have a good season."

Fort Erie Mayor Doug Martin was similarly pleased with the number of applications, given earlier worries that the length of time it was taking to get confirmation that the racing season was a go might cause owners to take their horses elsewhere.

"It's good news," said Martin, adding he had been told at least 850 stall applications were needed to make the season successful. "I guess (horse owners) must have faith at what's going on in Fort Erie and they want to come back here."

Martin and Jim Thibert, general manager of the Fort Erie Economic Development and Tourism Corp., recently flew to New York City to meet with a representative of the the Tsuvah Group, which owns Nordic Gaming, to confirm ownership is willing to take a loss to subsidize racing purses in 2008 while the province works out a strategy to assist Ontario's horse racing industry.

A decline in revenues from the government-operated Slots at the Fort Erie Race Track has caused purses to fall in recent years.

In 2002, purses amounted to roughly $16 million during the 100 days of racing. Last year, there was about $4 million in purse money to cover the 84-day season.

Based on stall applications so far, Wells said there is at least one more reason to be optimistic: New blood.

"We have some newcomers - I'd say about five to 10 trainers who haven't been here before from various locations in the (United) States.

"They make up about 50 horses," Wells said.

(With files by Jennifer Pellegrini )



Jockey, trainer honoured at Gala

Tom Wolski, The Province

Published: Friday, February 29, 2008

With horse trainer Alan May and jockey Mickey Walls being inducted into the B.C. Thoroughbred Hall of Fame at tonight's annual Thoroughbred Gala Awards at the Boulevard Casino in Coquitlam, the nominating committee got this one right.

For new fans of horse racing, May's name may be unfamiliar. But to veteran horseplayers the thinking is, Why so long?

Over his long career, the horses May trained read like a who's who of racing in this province.

Bob William's Detrimental, George Culley's Barkerville Belle, Cedar Grove Thoroughbreds' Avant's Gold and Rocket Gibraltar, Les and Mary Gilmore's Aviemore, Imperial Stables' Police Inspector, a former horse of the year, and Bob Stirskey's Palica are only a handful of horses he made winners.

Not only was May good at developing horses, the list of people he helped start is equally impressive.

Jockeys whom he taught the ropes of riding include perennial riding champion and Canadian Hall of Fame inductee Chris Loseth and multiple Exhibition Park riding leader Jim Arnold.

In typical fashion, May seeks no credit for the success of his students.

"In Chris's (Loseth) case, it was all due to the fact he was the hardest-working person I've ever known," said May

Trainers who worked for him include Dennis Terry, Rick Kamps, Shauna Ferguson and Carol and Joe Walls.

"What's nice about tonight is when Mickey (Walls) was born, his parents Carol and Joe were working for me on the farm. And to be going into the Hall of Fame with Mickey, how neat is that?" said May.

In 1990 at age 16, Walls' riding career began. Being too young to drive, Walls sat in the back seat of his parents' car as they drove to Exhibition Park from their home in Langley.

He was always fighting a weight problem, and his successful riding career ended 12 years later -- long enough to achieve some milestones.

In his first year of riding Walls won a Sovereign Award. The following year he took home another Sovereign and a prestigious Eclipse Award.

When he retired, his horses had earned $37 million from 1,432 wins.

"As a youngster growing up in Langley, going into the Hall of Fame is like ice cream on the cake, truly a wonderful feeling," Walls said by telephone from Ontario.

"It's a shame I can't attend, but last month during a morning workout, I tore an ACL in my leg, which makes it hard to get around."


In case you have not seen enough shows or read enough books about jockeys and their lives, next year a new movie is coming out about female jockeys…

The Women Who Would Be Jockeys

A new documentary set for release in 2009 will tell the story of a group of women who had to overcome much adversity to make it into the boys club of professional horse jockeys.

Thursday, February 28, 2008 at 5:05 PM

By FilmStew Staff

Director Jason Neff grew up with a father who was a horse racing jockey turned trainer, an uncle who was also a jockey and two grandfathers who worked as trainers. As he says in his Filmmaker’s Statement, “Horse racing was to be a part of my blood and there was no escaping it.” Sure enough, he is now busy at work on Jock, a movie that will outline the history and challenges faced by female jockeys, known in the early days as “Jockettes.”

It was Olympic equestrienne Kathy Kusner who opened the door for female representation in the sport in the late 1960’s after suing the Maryland State Racing Commission for unfair discrimination. Shortly thereafter, the group of women that followed into the sport were instant celebrities, appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and in much other media coverage. The film’s website, launched today, is also intended as a tool for Neff and his producer, Linda Ellman (On Native Soil: The Documentary of the 9/11 Commission Report), to connect with additional potential film subjects. “We’re hoping to create an online Internet community where anybody associated with these historic events can share their stories,” Neff says in a press release, “and help us locate female jockeys that haven’t been heard from in decades.” So far, just under a dozen jockeys are listed in connection with the film, including Hollywood actress turned jockey Robyn Smith; Barbara Joe Rubin, the first victorious female jockey; and the somewhat infamous Mary Bacon, who suffered numerous injuries, was a KKK sympathizer and posed for Playboy. A companion coffee table book will also be derived from the shoot in collaboration with photographer Joseph Michael Lopez.

Bits - RICHARD LISTER and MALCOLM PIERCE had a win for Canadians at Fair Grounds yesterday with FLORIDA BRED filly SERENITY LAKE, by Alphabet Soup...LEONNATUS ANTEAS is racing in the GULFSTREAM PARK HANDICAP tomorrow and the field for the Grade 2 is weak.


  • At 12:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Jen, a movie was filmmed in Fort Erie in 06 i think it was called 'All Hat', just wandering if it is out yet on the big screen or where could i go about getting a d.v.d copy of this film, any suggestions?

  • At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey Jen,can tell me how is Emma doing in Hong Kong--I have not heard anything for awhile.

  • At 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    "All Hat" played here a few weeks ago (short run) and prior to that was screened at the Toronto Film Festival last September. It is still playing in Lethbridge Alberta, long way to go for a movie LOL. If it comes out on DVD I will post on here.

  • At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    "All Hat" is being released on DVD May 27/08. Cancel the Greyhound ticket to Alberta.


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