ARE YOU READY FOR IT? Set up begins at Woodbine, horses arrive Wednesday
KAWARTHA’S NEWS CONFERENCE CANCELLATION
The Peterborough Examiner has been reporting about the future of Kawartha Downs and Ajax Downs in the last week but the most recent development suggests that good news is on the way for Ontario racing and the smaller tracks.
A recently cancelled press conference, which may have been announcing the dire situation Kawartha Downs was in, especially with the casino being moved from the track, suggests funding for tracks ia about to be announced.
Woodbine Entertainment will be in charge of distributing the funds to tracks once the Ontario government moves the funds to Woodbine. It is believed that this could happen very shortly.
From the Peterborough Examiner:
Horsemen and the mayor of Cavan Monaghan Township are taking the cancellation of a “major announcement” at Kawartha Downs on Thursday morning as good news.
Kawartha Downs general manager Orazio Valente called a press conference for a “major announcement regarding the future of Kawartha Downs.” When it came time for the press conference, Valente said he was postponing the announcement.
“There has been a major development in the last 24 hours. As a result of this development we are postponing this press conference to a date in the near future,” Valente told a gathering of about 25 people from the harness racing community and media.
FOAL CROP IN CANADA HOLDING STEADY- Ontario is up a bit
Some 1,375 foals are expected to be born in Canada this year, comparable to 2017’s number and higher than in previous years:
Year North Amer. Foal Crop % change Canadian foal crop
2014 21,396 -0.1 1,285
2015 21,421 0.1 1,298
2016 20,900* -2.4 1,350*
2017 20,900* 0.0 1,375*
2018 19,925* -4.7 1,375*
The 808 Ontario bred foals born in 2016 is the first increase in foal numbers in the province in several years, according to the Jockey Club’s FACT BOOK for Ontario, 2018.
Daily Racing Form Report: The Jockey Club projects a North American registered foal crop of 21,500 for the 2018 foaling season, marking a 4.4 percent decrease from the projected crop in 2017.
If the projection holds, it would illustrate a continued decline in the North American foal crop, which has not posted a year-over-year gain since 2005, which produced 38,365 foals. A foal crop of 21,500 would mark the lowest annual foal population since 1966, when 20,228 foals were registered.
The projected crop for 2017, as announced by The Jockey Club in August 2016, was 22,500. That number encompasses horses born in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico.
WONDER GADOT STILL POSSIBLE FOR FAIR GROUNDS OAKS
Grade II Rachel Alexandra Stakes third-place finisher Wonder Gadot could return to action in the Gr. II $400,000 Fair Grounds Oaks (100-40-20-10) on Mar. 24 according to trainer Mark Casse’s assistant David Carroll.
“Mark and (Owner) Mr. (Gary) Barber will talk about that,” Carroll said. “I think a lot depends on what (Rachel Alexandra winner) Monomoy Girl is going to do. I read that she might go for the (Gr. I $400,000) Ashland (at Keeneland on Apr. 7) and if she does then maybe it will lead to the possibility that she’ll run here. She’s going to stay here for now, and we’ll see what happens closer to race time. She came out of it in great shape.”
The Ontario-bred daughter of Medaglia d’Oro currently sits at No. 3 on the Kentucky Oaks Leaderboard with 24 points. She acquired ten when winning the Gr. II Demoiselle at Aqueduct and four following a narrow second place finish to Stronger Than Ever in the Silverbulletday Stakes. Wonder Gadot earned another ten in the Rachel Alexandra.
HIGHEST PAYOFFS last week
courtesy Ken Richards
Feb. 25 Santa Anita 2.00 Pick 6 $342,006.40
Feb. 24 Santa Anita 2.00 Pick 6 $ 52,473.00
Feb. 24 Gulfstream .20cPick 6 $ 34,182.38
Feb. 25 Laurel 1.00 High5 $ 25,513.70
Feb. 22 Gulfstream .20c Pick6 $ 25,034.42
Feb. 23 Gulfstream 1.00 High5 $ 21,647.20
FILLY BEATS THE BOYS IN SAUDI ARABIA’S BIGGEST RACE
ATTAADAH, a 3-year-old fillies by SPANISH STEPS (Unbridled) from the Bernardini mare Derasa, won the King Abdulaziz Cup in Saudi Arabia on Feb. 24 in the slop.
The second dam of this filly is Grade 1 winner SHARP CAT, who raced under trained D. Wayne Lukas.
DYNAMIC SKY SIRES FIRST FOAL
A colt out of Grade 1 producer Count to Three is the first foal by millionaire Sovereign Award champion Dynamic Sky.
The colt was born on February 17 at the Everatt Family’s Shannondoe Farm in St. Thomas, Ontario. He is a half-brother to 2017 Bing Crosby S. (G1) winner Ransom the Moon. Count to Three will be bred back to Pioneerof the Nile.
“He’s a big, strong, good-looking foal and we couldn’t be more pleased,” said Shannondoe Farm’s Arika Everatt-Meeuse.
A son of Sky Mesa, Dynamic Sky was a stakes winner at two and three racing in the colors of John C. Oxley. He earned a Sovereign Award at age four with a campaign that included a triumph in the Grade 3 Red Smith Handicap and a pair of Grade 1 placings in the Northern Dancer Turf Stakes and Pattison Canadian International Stakes. He retired to Shannondoe with earnings of $1,009,258.
CANADIAN-BRED CONQUEST TSUNAMI MAY BE HEADED TO DUBAI
106 Beyer Figure in sizzling Santa Anita stakes score
Conquest Tsunami scored a 2 ½ length upset in the Grade III, $150,000 Daytona Stakes, thereby heading a 1-2-3 finish for trainer PETER MILLER that included Stormy Liberal and Calculator. Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Conquest Tsunami led gate to wire en route to getting 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf course in 1:12.03. The 106 Beyer Figure was a lifetime best for the gelding.
It was another amazing win for the flashy bay who was, at one point, lost in the confusion of the deadly San Luis Rey fire in December.
The $190,000 yearling purchase (by Conquest Stables) was bred by Yvonne Schwabe and Josham Farms in Ontario and is from the mare Classic Neel.
“There was just one way to go,” said Espinoza, who was aboard the 6-year-old Stormy Atlantic gelding for the first time. “I broke in front and kept my position all the way to the wire. For him the main thing is to let him go and just run his race. I felt he was going pretty quick but he was doing it so easily, so I was pretty much a passenger.
“I just wanted to make sure he crossed the dirt okay and then let him really run in the stretch. “…This is obviously the first time I’ve been on him, but he’s pretty amazing. It takes nothing away from the other two horses who ran second and third…but he was much the best today.”
Owner Gary Barber said after the race:
The way he runs, maybe we’ll try Dubai, if we get invited. He did well with Mark Casse (at Woodbine, Toronto, Canada), but I thought he wanted firmer turf. He loves the downhill here, he really does. This course is perfect for him.”
A scintillating allowance winner in his first start for Miller coming down the hill on Jan. 20, Conquest Tsunami registered his first graded stakes win in today’s Daytona. Off at 5-1 in a field of seven older horses, he paid $12.40, $5.80 and $3.20.
Conquest Tsunami improved his overall record to 22-8-2-2. The winner’s share of $90,000 increased his earnings to $503,066.
ROSE’S VISION wins maiden, another Queen’s Plate contender for Chiefswood
The Artie Schiller- Essential Rose, by Bernardini colt ROSE’S VISION bounced back from an 18-length drubbing on the dirt to win his maiden on the grass at Gulfstream Saturday.Trained by Stuart Simon for Chiefswood Stable, Rose’s Vision was 3rd in the Cup and Saucer Stakes behind Dixie Moon last year as a juvenile. He has never raced on Tapeta.
It was the 2nd race on Lasix for the colt who is the first foal of the unraced mare.
This is the same family as Sam Davis Stakes winner FLAMEAWAY, graded stakes winner TIZ A SLAM and stakes winner Ellan Vannin.
Rose’s Vision ran 1 mile on grass in 1:36.80 for a career best 78 Beyer Speed Figure.
TOWER OF TEXAS, age 7, tries dirt, finishes 3rd in Grade 3 Hal’s Hope
Scott Dilworth and Tom Van Meter’s amazing gelding TOWER OF TEXAS rallied to finish 3rd in the one-mile Hal’s Hope Stakes at Guilfstream on Saturday behind winner Economic Model (Flatter) and Irish War Cry.
The son of Street Sense, bred by Anderson Farrms and Rod Ferguson in Ontario, was coming off a hard fought win in a stakes race at Fair Grounds on the grass, the surface on which he has done most of his earning.
The Hal’s Hop was his first race on the dirt and he had a noble run in a race that was marred by the break down and death of raded stakes winner SEND IT IN, who was making his first start since April.
Tower Of Texas was 2 3/4 lengths behind the top 2 and he earned his usual 96 Beyer Speed Figure.
Tower of Texas earned $9,600 to go over $900,000 in earnings. Roger Attfield trains and Tyler Gafflione was his 5th different jockey since June.