WHIPPING UP A GOOD MEETING
A 'town hall' -like meeting in Mississauga hosted by the ONTARIO RACING COMMISSION was well attended yesterday as horsepeople from various factions of thoroughbred and standardbred racing got together to discuss the use of the whip.
The ONTARIO SPCA was also in attendance along with owners, trainers, vets, officials, racing fans, drivers, jockeys and some publications.
On the thoroughbred side, examples of the new whip, the LITE TOUCH, was presented and was well received.
The Jockeys Guild of Canada is apparently moving forward to try and get the riders in Ontario to use this kinder whip.
What was interesting was the huge difference between fines for whip abuse in the two breds.
Causing a welt in TB racing - 1st offence $300 fine
in standardbred racing? A 15-day suspension.
Certainly this discrepency needs to be addressed as the ORC moves forward to collate and form some recommendations based on yesterday's meeting.
WOODBINE WEDNESDAY NIGHT
Okay, so DEAN DEVERELL didn't retire from riding as was announced on TV weeks ago.
Last evening at Woodbine was a mixed bag of classy old timers winning, speed and stretch runners and a whopping set of exotic payoffs in the last race of the night that was just a confusing event (but for $12,500 claiming, what can we expect?).
race 1- Off the grass and a 14 horse field was reduced to 6 - further emphasizing that the 2 surfaces are simply as different as dirt and grass and are not interchangeable.
Stronach Stables' HOLY GRACE made her Woodbine 2008 debut a winning one as she rallied fom last to win her maiden at 1 mile and 70 yards.
race 2- BOLD MANEUVER wanted grass, didn't get it but led all the way despite drifting out badly to win over 6 rivals at 6 furlongs for allowances. Gail Cox trains for John Menary and herself and the filly is by Bold Executive.
race 3 - PRINCE NICHOLAS won his maiden in fast time for the $20,000 claiming level on the pace. The Florida bred by Colony Light is trained by Bill Tharrenos for Nick Sotiniu and Bill Karitzakos.
race 4- STRIKING ATTITUDE won for the 2nd straight time and the Ontario bred by Aptitude edged Cusoon, who went fast on the pace in the 1 1/16 mile race for $15,000.
race 5 TWISTED WIT escaped a claim again. The 7yo is close to ONE MILLION in earnings, and continues to be dropped in class by his owner Rolph Davis and trainer Robert Tiller. He won last tnight, on the pace with his favourite rider Matt Moore, and got to stay in his barn.
race 6 - JUNGLE BREW won an allowance race and the 3yo from Stronach Stables rallied past the front running CATCH AIR (rider does not carry a whip on that one) who set a slow pace. Jungle Brew is by Milwaukee Brew.
race 7 Heavy favourite STRANGE ROMANCE was an easy winner of a maiden allowance - 0 lengths, 1:09 and change and this 1/2 sister to Matt's Broken Vow is getting very good now.
She ran an 88 Beyer Figure.
And race 8 went to the longtime non-winner of 2, old gelding WHY NOT GOLD, who won a non-winners of 2 for $12,500 in his 51st start.
The 7yo had not won since his maiden race 5 years ago but suddenly rallied last night to win at 28 to 1, in time to beat another illogical one, KEMPADOO, who was 33 to 1.
One horse who appeared to be uncomfortable in post parade, Ogygian's Storm, was eased.
SHE'S A DOLL
SWEETSOUTHERN DOLL, a Florida bred owned by local Anne Perron and trained by Dave cross Jr. won an allowance race last night at Presque Isle Downs and is headed to Woodbine's La Lorgentte Stakes. The filly had been 4th in the Duchess Stakes in her previous race.
Her Beyer last night was 74.
CHIEFSWOOD PICKS UP ONE FOR $800,000
Top Canadian stable CHIEFSWOOD STABLES, owned by Robert Krembil, paid $800,000 for a filly by A.P. Indy out of the Japanese bred mare Million Gift on the Tuesday session of the Keeneland September yearling sale.
It was late in the session when Chiefswood stepped into buy a yearling. The farm has been know to buy a big-ticket yearling or mare or bolster its breeding band.
This gal's dam is by Sunday Silence and the mare is a half-sister to champion Sky Beauty and the dam of TALE OF EKATI.
On the Tuesday session, some Canadian breds sold well:
Elusive Quiality colt out of Rare Opportunity, half brother to Street Sounds and Silver Highlight sold by Anderson Farms, agent for $350,000
Kinghaven Farms sold a Hennessy filly out of Brandy Lake for $220,000 through Anderson
Syd Cooper's RMC STABLE sold a Street Cry filly out of Stakes placed Ascot Tobie, by Ascot Knight for $200,000.
The Woodbine $1,000,000 Megapick runs from Sept 4th through to Oct 4th, 2008. It’s fast, it’s easy and it’s FREE. Pick the exact order of finish in any of the 3 selected Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series races and you could win $100,000. Win all three Race Contests and you could win an additional $700,000!
Your selection for the first Race Contest, the Woodbine Mile, is due by 4:30 pm on Sunday, September 7th, 2008. Watch the website for any changes to this deadline. Simply log on after September 4 to make your selections or use the Quick Pick button if you want us to randomly generate your selection for you.
And remember, you will need to make your selection for each of the Natalma Stakes and the Pattison Canadian International, starting Sept 11th and Oct 1st respectively. Check the website for registration dates and times.
HORSEPEOPLE CELEBRATE NEW ERA AT AJAX DOWNS!
NEW TRACK HERALDS WEALTH OF OPPORTUNITIES
FOR QUARTER HORSE INDUSTRY
Toronto, ON - Racing fans, horsepeople, invited dignitaries, politicians and media will participate in a day of festivities at Ajax Downs on Sunday, September 21st to celebrate the dawn of a
prosperous new era for Quarter Horse racing in Ontario. September 21st will be the last day of
racing on the Downs’ 40-year-old J-shaped track. Currently under construction, a five-furlong oval racetrack will be the new stage for Quarter Horse racing in Ontario when the 2009 season begins next May. Another auspicious sign of the times is the marquee event on the September 21st season-closing card – the $100,000+ G3 Alex Picov Championship Stake, the first-ever graded stake offered for Quarter Horses in Ontario.
The new racetrack at Ajax Downs is just one of many avenues of growth opening up for the Quarter Horse racing and breeding community in Ontario, resulting from the Slots at Racetracks Program.
The Slots program kick-started Quarter Horse racing’s development in 2006 with the installation of 250 slot machines at Ajax Downs. While 80% of the slots revenue goes directly to provincial coffers, the remainder is being used to grow the Ontario Quarter Horse racing industry through a carefully crafted strategy outlined in the Ontario Quarter Horse Racing Industry Development Plan.
The Plan’s multi-year strategy calls for steadily increasing purses, a rich reward program for
Ontario breeders and owners, infrastructure development to grow the wagering base, as well as
education programs to supply the skilled staff required for the production and maintenance of highquality
racehorses and breeding stock.
“The program is offering financial rewards for owners and breeders at a level we’ve never seen
before, and they’re growing every year,” said Bob Broadstock, President of the QROOI (Quarter
Racing Owners of Ontario Inc.) “With awards for Ontario-sired, Ontario-bred and Ontario-sired-andbred
horses, on top of the purses, there’s no doubt we’ll see an increase in both the quantity and
quality of the breeding and racing stock in the province.”
Ontario breeders and owners who currently specialize in racing Quarter Horses are already reaping
rewards. Purses, racing bonuses and breeders’ awards have more than doubled since 2006 to $4.2
million and are slated for continued growth year-over-year, in line with growth in industry
participation. By 2013, purses and incentives will top $10 million annually, with the toal program
value exceeding $14 million.