Ginger Brew --- odds-on to be named 3yo filly champion in Canada at the Sovereign Awards tomorrow night. Owner Stronach Stables (Freida Stronach shown leading her in) and her breeder Adena Springs are also up for awards. (www.horse-races.net)
WHO WILL WIN?
SOVEREIGN AWARDS TOMORROW NIGHT in downtown Toronto
HERE ARE THE NOMS AND SOME GUESSES...
Champion 2 Year Old Filly
Van Lear Rose
VAN LEAR ROSE is slight fave in a tough category. LARAGH is in a big race on Sunday but of course, the awards will be over. Grade 2 winner SPRINGSIDE probbaly should have been at least nominated but the voters didn't notice.
Champion 2 Year Old Male
Mine That Bird
A guessing game. UTTERLY COOL was brilliant in the Cup & Saucer, but that was on grass. SOUTHERN EXCHANGE was pretty good sprinting and okay in a big race at Del Mar. MINE THAT BIRD won lots but was slow.
Champion 3 Year Old Filly
GINGER BREW wins, hands down.
Champion 3 Year Old Male
NOT BOURBON should win over sprinter champ Fatal Bullet.
Champion Older Female on the Main Track
Against the Sky
BEAR NOW should romp - that American sprinter Akronisim got a curious amount of votes in this and the sprinter category.
Champion Older Male on the Main Track
SPAGHETTI MOUSE probably deserves to win but ICE BEAR handled several surfaces and Marchfield may have got lots of votes.
Champion Female Turf
Callwood Dancer (Ire)
Should be close again - CALLWOOD DANCER could have done better in her last pair in the U.S. to bolster her case but she had a good record. Will voters be swayed SEALY HILL'S way based on reputation and her 2nd place finish in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf? (she didn't win anything this year)
Champion Male Turf Horse
RAHY'S ATTORNEY should be a galloping winner.
FATAL BULLET should be unanimous, if he's not, there is a problem in the voting.
KATHIE'S COLLEEN, dam od Triple Crown winner Wando from years ago, will probably win since she has never been eligible before this year (she was made eligible when Half Sister, her 5yo, was 3rd in a minor stake).
Gardiner Farms Limited
ADENA SPRINGS figures to win for the 4th time in a row.
Outstanding Owner in Canada
Bear Stables, Ltd.
BEAR STABLES should win based on 2 champions but Stronach and Tucci are worthy rivals.
ROGER ATTFIELD should win based on big wins in the Queen's Plate etc. with a variety of different horses but voters may go for numbers and pick Casse again.
Outstanding Apprentice Jockey
Too tough to predict.
Eurico Rosa Da Silva
JIM MCALENEY should win his first Sovereign Award.
HONG KONG RACING LATE SATURDAY NIGHT!
excerpt from www.horse-races.net
The last big event of the year on the international horse racing calendar is the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Races. The four Group 1 events will be contested over the turf course at Sha Tin on Sunday afternoon (late Saturday/early Sunday morning in America), all of which are under weight-for-age conditions.
North American racing fans can watch the races on HRTV in the U.S., HPI-TV in Canada, and at selected simulcast locations starting shortly after midnight Eastern time.
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase (G1) will kick off the day's stakes action at 2:00PM (1:00AM ET.) The race drew 13 entrants and will be run over the classic distance of 2400 meters (about 1 1/2 miles). Last year's winner Doctor Dino is back and will face Breeders' Cup Marathon winner Muhannak. The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint (G1) is the next race at a distance of 1200 meters (about 6 furlongs) around one turn, and a field of 13 goes to post at 2:40PM local time (1:40AM ET). This race is headed by Australian multiple Group 1 winner Apache Cat and French multiple Group 1 winner Marchand d'Or.
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Mile (G1) drew a full field of 14 and will run at 3:50PM (2:50AM ET.) Here last year's winner Good Ba Ba will do against top American miler Kip Deville. The highlight race of the day is the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup (G1), a 2000-meter (about 1 1/4 mile) trip around two turns, where a full field of 14 will go to post at 4:30PM local time (3:30AM ET). Local hero Viva Pataca, second in the race last year to Ramonti, will face British invader Eagle Mountain who was second in the Breeders' Cup Turf last out. Read more, see fields and photos
FORM GUIDE FOR HONG KONG RACES (1 a.m - 3:30 a.m. early SUNDAY MORNING, EASTERN)
This is a 64-page document with form lines and other tidbits, a little different than the North American DRF but interesting...
DOCTOR DINO favoured for 2nd Vase win
from HKJC website
Richard Gibson paid his first visit of the week to Sha Tin to oversee the final preparations of defending Vase champion Doctor Dino this morning.
The horse had a workout on the all weather track under his regular rider Eric Gandon and looked to be taking a fair hold as he powered down the straight, being clocked in 25.8 seconds over the last 400 metres.
"He seems in good form," Gibson confirmed, "but the worry is that it might be a tactical race. He seems to me to be similar to the way he was last year. Of course he's a year older, but he hasn't lost any of his ability."
Another making his first appearance of the week at Sha Tin was Irish trainer Jim Bolger, whose filly Lush Lashes is amongst the more fancied contenders in the Cup.
Her jockey Kevin Manning was aboard for her all weather track exercise, and the pair seemed happy enough with their charge. "She's in very good form," said Manning, "she picked up an injury in her last run, a severe gash in her off fore, but she's over that now and is very well. Put it this way, I wouldn't swap her for anything else in the race," he enthused.
for the CUP
Eagle Mountain 3.50
Viva Pataca 3.50
Lush Lashes 7.00 (photo at right)
Linngari 11.00 (photo #2 below)
Bullish Luck 13.00
Loup Breton 17.00
Out Of Control 17.00
Artiste Royal 26.00
Hawkes Bay 51.00
Sight Winner 51.00
Viva Macau 51.00
2008 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Races - Barrier Draw Results
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup Barrier Draw Results
Horse No. Horse Name Representing Draw No.
1 EAGLE MOUNTAIN SAF 5
2 VIVA PATACA HK 6
3 LINNGARI GB 12
4 LOUP BRETON FR 7
5 BALIUS FR 13
6 OUT OF CONTROL USA 14
7 ARTISTE ROYAL USA 2
8 ESTEJO GER 9
9 BULLISH LUCK HK 4
10 HAWKES BAY HK 1
11 VIVA MACAU HK 11
12 SIGHT WINNER HK 3
13 TRINCOT FR 8
14 LUSH LASHES IRE 10
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Mile Barrier Draw Results
Horse No. Horse Name Representing Draw No.
1 GOOD BA BA HK 7
2 KIP DEVILLE USA 12
3 ARMADA HK 4
4 SUPER HORNET JPN 2
5 PRESSING GB 11
6 SPIRITO DEL VENTO FR 9
7 EGYPTIAN RA HK 13
8 ABLE ONE HK 5
9 AWESOME GEM USA 3
10 LAA RAYB GB 8
11 MAJOR CADEAUX GB 1
12 BULLISH CASH HK 6
13 JOY AND FUN HK 14
14 NATAGORA FR 10
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase Barrier Draw Results
Horse No. Horse Name Representing Draw No.
1 DOCTOR DINO FR 12
2 DOURO VALLEY AUS 13
3 MORES WELLS IRE 10
4 PACKING WINNER HK 7
5 MUHANNAK GB 4
6 PURPLE MOON GB 6
7 JACKPOT DELIGHT HK 9
8 POSEIDON ADVENTURE GER 3
9 MOURILYAN SAF 1
10 BUCCELLATI GB 11
11 JAGUAR MAIL JPN 2
12 AMBITIOUS GENERAL HK 8
13 THE BOGBERRY FR 5
The Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint Barrier Draw Results Horse No. Horse Name Representing Draw No.
1 APACHE CAT AUS 2
2 MARCHAND D'OR FR 4
3 MYTHICAL FLIGHT SAF 8
4 ENTHUSED HK 13
5 SUNNY POWER HK 12 (Photo above right)
6 GREEN BIRDIE HK 5
7 LAUREL GUERREIRO JPN 3
8 WAIKATO SIN 6
9 ABBADJINN GER 7
10 MOORHOUSE LAD GB 1
11 TOSHO COURAGE JPN 10
12 INSPIRATION HK 9
13 NIGHTLIGN HK 11
WOODBINE WAGERING UPDATE FOR 2008 excerpt...FROM DAILY RACING FORM Woodbine handle down slightly from 2007 By Bill Tallon
ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Woodbine's total all-sources handle and average daily handle showed slight declines for its its 2008 live Thoroughbred meet, while the average handle per race remained steady compared with last year.
An all-sources total of $337,734,635 was wagered on live racing during the 167-day meet that ended this past Sunday, compared with the $343,059,524 recorded from the 169 dates offered in 2007, a 1.5 per cent overall drop.
This year's average daily handle of $2,022,363 was down 3.7 percent from last year's average of $2,029,938.
Handle per race (1,553 races in total) was $217,472 in 2008, compared with $215,489 (1,592 races in total) in 2007, a rise of 0.92 percent.
"In light of the handle dips we've seen during other Thoroughbred meets across the continent this year, we are pleased with the results," said Sean Pinsonneault, Woodbine's vice president of wagering operations.
Average field size at Woodbine held steady at 9.0 horses per race this year, the same as in 2007.
The average field size for the 123 stakes races, according to Daily Racing Form statistics, was 7.89. Overnight and stakes purses paid out in 2008 totaled $87.3 million, versus $84.7 million last year.
ALSO FROM DAILY RACING FORM ON TRACK DEATHS UP FROM 2 TO 10
The Ontario Racing Commission's chief veterinarian, Greg Taylor, reported that 10 horses died on the racetrack from racing-related injuries and another two from pulmonary hemorrhaging. Woodbine reported two fatal breakdowns during the course of the races last year.
Note: The 2009 Woodbine Thoroughbred meeting is scheduled for 167 dates, beginning April 4.
3 Ontario breds win at Penn National
GUIDED AFFAIR (Ontario bred) 4yo, won for $8,000 claiming at Penn National last night. By Goldem Missile out of Lily's Affair by Colonial Affair.
(one of the favourites Mad Bob Cat broke down on the lead in the race)
LOVE N LUST, Ontario bred 3yo, won for $10,000 for Sam Webb and Richard Rossi at Penn National last night at 4 to 1. She's by A Fleets Dancer - Eye Bright by Chief's Crown, bred by Cam Allard.
VICTORIAN KNIGHT (Ascot Knight-Jolie Fabie by Ben Fab) won his maiden for $5,000 as the favourite at Penn National last night. Bred by Earl Barnett in Ontario.
EARLE MACK is selling a boatload of horses at the Keeenland Jan, sale including ICABRAD CRANE and GLOBETROTTER plus Woodbine runners TOOK THE TIME and ROYAL CORREDOR.
Mack sells through Denail Stud, agent XXIII.
VESTREY LADY, a stakes winner for Harlequin Ranches is among the locals entered in the Keeneland January sale next month.
The filly is one of 7 consigned to the sale by Bernard McCormack's Cara Bloodstock.
FINANCINGAVAILABLE, a champion owned by K K Sengara, is entered again after not selling in November.
TORONTO STAR UPDATES BETTING MACHINE SNAFU
( from a post Monday)
by Jack Lakey
UPDATE: Our Monday column detailed how The Fixer got a $39.80 wagering voucher from a self-serve betting terminal at a Champions horse racing teletheatre that couldn't be cashed. Jane Holmes, of Woodbine Gaming and Entertainment, called to say it was due to an error by a mutuels clerk, and has since refunded us the money. We'll round it up to $50 and donate it to the Sportsmen's Corner of the Star's Santa Claus fund.
ARE JOCKEYS BIGGER THAN THE GAME?
The cancellation of the last day of racing at Woodbine was strictly the choice of the jockeys - according to most sources.
Read about it...