CENTRE OF THE RING
Whether it was working on films, working on a story, snapping a zillion photos, handicapping a race for her next bet or simply just meeting and greeting folks at the big functions of the the business, SHIRLEY GILL was passionate about life and racing.
Shirley owned racehorses, loved to bet on them, and was fascinated by every aspect of the business. Each year she would spend hours calculating her team for the Queen's Plate Fantasy Challenge contest, and she often did well.
In her retirement, Shirley never slowed down, writing stories on the Hall of Fame inductions, yearling sales and proofreading and editing statstics for Canadian Thoroughbred magazine.
And Shirley would do anything for anyone - she was gracious and fun and so very keen and always happy.
From Nassau, Bahamas, her hometown, to Vancouver to Toronto, Shirley made an impression of so many, many folks.
Shirley passed away after a brief illness on March 17, 2009 in Newmarket, Ontario. She leaves her wonderful daughter Linda and dozens of friends.
She will be missed.
WHO SPILLED THE PAINT?
This young boy, photographed by Doris Carey at T.C. Westmeath Stud in Shelburne, apears to already have his bridle in place.
The Old Forester - Regent's Signet colt has cornered the market on white markings (there is even a white part of his body shown in one of these phtoos that we can't show!)
Thanks to the Carey family and Lois Keays for sending these pictures.
ATTFIELD TO TRAIN FOR STRONACH
Hall of Fame trainer ROGER ATTFIELD will train about 20 horses for Frank Stronach and family's Stronach Stables in 2009.
Attfield has trained for Stronach before.
Interestingly, Attfield could beat the Stronach team Saturday in the Pan American...read more below.
(Photo of Attfield, far right, taken after he won the Plate with Not Bourbon by www.horse-races.net)
MAC TAKES A PAN-AM ROUTE
JIM MCALENEY, who came close to being the champion jockey of 2008, has been riding in Florida this winter and Saturday gets a chance to win one of the biggest races of his career.
McAleney is reunited with his buddy SPICE ROUTE, the British bred gelding from Harlequin ranches and trainer Roger Attfield in the PAN AMERICAN HANDICAP at Gulfstream Park.
Spice Route was 2nd in the Grade 1 Canadian International last year and is clearly sitting on a big race.
In his 2009 debut, he was 3rd beaten 1 1/2 lengths after being checked on the last turn in the MacDiarmida Stakes under Edgar Prado.
That day, the gelding was some 22 lengths off the leader, Presious Passion, during the race and he meets that one again.
Another one to beat is Canadian-bred SLIGOVITZ, from Stronach Stables.
(In the photo below right from www.-horse-races.net), Spice Route is the white faced fellow in the middle)
Saturday, Gulfstream Park
PAN AMERICAN S.-GIII, $150,000, 4yo/up, 1 1/2mT PP HORSE SIRE JOCKEY WT
1 Sligovitz Sligo Bay (Ire) Velazquez 114
2 Spice Route (GB) King=s Best McAleney 122
3 South Handyman (Arg) Southern Halo Bravo 122
4 Quasicobra Wild Rush Garcia 118
5 Presious Passion Royal Anthem Trujillo 122
6 Buddy's Humor Distorted Humor Lezcano 120
7 Nergal (Fr) Simon du Desert (Fr) Douglas 120
CANADIAN BRED BEGINNERS IN FINALE SATURDAY
There are a trio of 3yo Canadian bred colts in the last race at Gulfstream on Saturday and any ability shown y them would surely put them in the Queen's Plate picture for June.
D'ORO DIABLO, owned and and bred by Bob Harvey, is in post 2 for trainer Eddie Kenneally. The Medaglia D'oro - Dancehall Floozy colt has worked in bullets in Florida.
COUNT FLOYD goes for Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry, from post 11. The Fitzhenry's bred the Aldebaran - Fairy West colt who is training smartly for trainer Catherine Day Phillips.
In post 12 is Mario Forgione's CARCILLO, a homebred Ontario bred son of Perfect Soul out of Miss A Fleet. He is trained by Mike DePaulo.
KENTUCKY DERBY STUFF
LANE'S END STAKES ON SATURDAY
The race looks like a 2 horse event with WEST SIDE BERNIE likely a big favourite and PARADE CLOWN as his main rival.
Saturday, Turfway Park
LANE'S END S.-GII, $500,000, 3yo, 1 1/8m (AWT)
PP HORSE SIRE JOCKEY
1 Hold Me Back Giant's Causeway Desormeaux
2 Bittel Road Stormy Atlantic Gomez
3 A. P. Cardinal A.P. Indy Velasquez
4 West Side Bernie Bernstein Prado
5 Jack Spratt Candy Ride (Arg) Leparoux
6 Parade Clown Distorted Humor Coa
7 Bruce N Autumn Lemon Drop Kid Lebron
8 Orthodox Pulpit Castanon
9 Loch Dubh Friends Lake Borel
10 Flying Private Fusaichi Pegasus Ocampo
11 Dynamite Bob Malabar Gold Guzman
12 Proceed Bee Bernstein Prescott
QUEEN'S PLATE CONTENDERS prep at Ocala
A bunch of Catherina Day Phillips trainees, all 3yos that could become Queen's Plate hopefuls, had some quick preps at the Ocala Training Centre yesterday morning.
Note: EQUIBASE now lists the age and sex of the horse in its workout pages.
Dr. Funkenstein (ON) Gelding 3 59.60 b 2/10
Long Pants (ON) Gelding 3 59.40 b 1/10
Mr. Foricos Two U (ON) Gelding 3 1:01.40 b 7/10
No More Tears (ON) Gelding 3 1:00.20 b 5/10
Quiet Approval (ON) Gelding 3 59.80 b 3/10
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WIN AND YOU'RE IN KENTUCKY DERBY RACE
"Arrogant and tough" colt headed to Kentucky
Trainer John Gosen has confirmed that MAFAAZ, who was adding blinkers yesterday, is going to try Kentucky, perhaps the Blue Grass Stakes, after the colt won the Challenge Stakes on an all weather track at Kempton yesterday, a 'win and you're in' type event.
Gosden called the colt is press releases "arrogant and tough".
KENTUCKY DERBY CHALLENGE S. (COND), ,80,000,
Kempton Park, 3-18, 3yo, 1 1/8m (AWT), 1:55.13,
Result from Thoroughbred Daily News:
1--MAFAAZ (GB), 129, c, 3, by Medicean (GB)
1st Dam: Complimentary Pass (GB), by Danehill
2nd Dam: Capo di Monte (Ire), by Final Straw (GB)
3rd Dam: Burghclere (GB), by Busted (GB)
(230,000gns wnlg >06 TATDEC; 400,000gns yrl >07
O-Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum;
B-The Complimentary Pass Partnership; T-John
OCALA 2YO SALE WRAPS UP
Trainer SID ATTARD bought one juvenile (an Officer filly) on a very light day for Canadians at the OBS 2yo sale yesterday.
Gross sales at the auction dropped $13 million from last year.
Although the number of horses sold - 215 - was down only slightly from 2008, when 233 sold, salesy totaled just $20,681,000, compared to more than $33 million for last year's sale.
The average price dropped from $143,262, compared to just $96,191 this year.
Former Woodbine runner wins Horse of the Year, after initially losing
Previously trained by Greg de Gannes at Woodbine, Storm Street has come to life in the Caribbean:
from Trinidad Express
Storm Street confirmed as new Horse of the Year
Thursday, March 19th 2009
IT'S OFFICIAL, Storm Street is the new 2008 Horse of the Year winner, replacing Chief Commander.
An unsigned press release from the Arima Race Club (ARC) sent on Tuesday confirmed the change which reversed the annoumcement of Chief Commander as the award winner on the night of the 26th edition of the Jetsam Awards ceremony on March 2 at the Century Ballroom, Queen's Park Oval.
Tuesday's release stated: "The ARC has completed an investigation into the selection of the Horse-of-the-Year award 2008. Having concluded that there were deficiencies in the process adopted by the Selection Committee in selecting the Horse-of-the-Year, the ARC wrote to the five members requesting them to convene a meeting to resolve the present controversy with respect to the Horse-of-the-Year selection".