PINK LLOYD – 9 straight stakes races – 106 Beyer Figure, the best of his amazing career – TERENCE DULAY PHOTO – horse












PINK LLOYD, the 2017 Horse of the Year, was stunning in his comeback as a 6-year-old and jockeys Rafael Hernandez and Luis Contreras each won half the 10 race cards on the first weekend of racing at Woodbine.

The weather was spectacular for the first 2 of 133 racing days and three stakes races offered plenty of excitement and some controversy.

Betting on the weekend was a bit sketchy however. Opening day was up $200,000 over April 15, opening day last year but day 2 was down about $1 million in betting over day 2 last year. There did not seem to be any difference in the racing cards of last year’s day 2 and this year’s 2nd day of racing.

The performance off the layoff by PINK LLOYD was remarkable. Breaking from post 1 in the 6-horse field under a new rider (Hernandez) Pink Lloyd was eager out of the gate but then allowed champion Conquest Enforcer to sccot away to a long lead. But the classy Pink Lloyd moved off the rail and rallied past that rival and held off a charging Extravagant Kid to win in 1:08.05, a track record. His time bested that of the 2011 mark set by Essence Hit Man of 108.16.

Pink Lloyd’s Beyer Figure of 106  was the best of his career.

That is 9 stakes in succession for the son of Old Forester – Gladiator Queen by Great Gladiator who was bred by John Carey.

The New Providence is likely up next on May 13 and by then, his regular rider Eurico da Silva will be back on board.

The Wando Stakes, worth $100,000, was also on Saturday’s card and that race was similarly exciting but for different reasons.

The Kitten’s Joy colt MACHTREE, making his first start on a surface other than grass and his firs start in Canada, came from last place until a great deal of urging by Patrick Husbands to to in front in time to win the 1 1/16 mile race for 3-year-olds but he was so green down the stretch run, he did not keep a straight path.

He came in and brushed Tale of Vienna late in the stretch after that one had already come out and caused Pipers Warrior to steady. Tale of Vienna then had a shift inwards and that caused Titochip, who was already lacking room, to lose his path. machtree and 3rd place finisher Take of Vienna were both disqualified and that moved up 2nd place finisher INGE to the win.

INGE, a leggy dark bay gelding by Victor’s Cry – Alexabella by Congaree was coming in from Oaklawn where he had a 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th in various races. Bred by Keith Johns’ True North Stable, he was claimed by Bruno Schickedanz for $40,000 last December and Norm McKnight trains. INGE was ridden by Gary Boulanger.

The McKnight stable won 4 races on the weekend and was non-committal about Inge continuing on the Queen’s Plate trail as the gelding certainly seems to have distance limitations. The time of the race was 1:44.62. Inge earned a 69 Beyer Figure.

SILENT STING (Caesar) after he won the Queenston Stakes. Luis Contreras aboard and Sarah Moore on the pony – photo courtesy MR WILL WONG

SUNDAY’S FEATURE, the QUEENSTON STAKES, a 7 furlong event for Canadian bred 3-year-olds, has produced 5 Queen’s Plate winners in 61 years.
This year’s running, worth $125,000-added was won by SILENT STING (Caesar), a Silent Name colt owned by Stronach Stables and trained by Sid Attard.
SILENT STING rallied in time after stalking the slow pace and then angled out and pounced in time in his first race with Lasix.

The paddock mate of Kentucky Derby entrant and Plate hopeful FLAMEAWAY won the Kingarvie Stakes last time in his 4 races. Luis Contreras rode. The Beyer Figure was 79, a lifetime best for Silent Sting.

Blueblood, a Fox Hill Farm colt by City Zip was 2nd and Sable Island was 3rd.

Unable to make headway in the sprint was AHEADBYACENTURY who will certainly get better with more distance for trainer John Ross. The Midnight Lute colt, who won the 9 furlong Coronation Futurity last year, was wearing front bandages for the first time.



AGCO Race Reports Debut

A very welcomed addition to the Ontario Thoroughbred season are the Race Reports written by the AGCO stewards following each day of racing.

A description of any events occurring during a race are described along with other items of note. These have always been done but now they are finally being made available to the public.

For example – here are the notes from Saturday’s WANDO STAKES:

Race 6 – The Wando Stakes – Stewards Inquiry and three Rider claims of foul. Rafael Hernandez aboard #1 “Pipers Warrior” against #6 “Tale of Vienna” ridden by Omar Moreno and #7 “Machtree” ridden by Patrick Husbands.

Rafael said he was squeezed in stretch but thinks the inside came out more than outside in.

Omar Moreno claimed against Patrick Husbands in late stretch, Omar said he came over on me and I had to check, he was having trouble with his horse.

Alan Garcia aboard #5 “Titochip” claimed foul on Omar and Patrick stating the outside came over and I had to check. Said Patrick’s horse started it and if he had stayed straight everyone would have been alright.

After review of the video and listening to the riders there are two disqualifications. The first COF by Rafael Hernandez on #1 was allowed against #6 ridden by
Omar who came out and into his path inside the 1/8th pole, at that point Patrick on the outside remained straight, #6 was moved from third and placed fifth behind #1. The second and third COFs by Omar Moreno and Alan Garcia against Patrick Husbands on #7 in deep stretch were allowed. Patrick’s horse was lugging in and went down into Moreno’s horse who lost momentum and in turn was forced into Garcia’s mount who had to check as well. #7 was moved from first and placed fifth behind #6 who now moves to fourth as a result. VIDEO REVIEW




The 2017 Outstanding Owner winners, Chiefswood Stable, won the first race of the year with the 5-year-old HOUDINI AFFAIR, who won the maiden race at 5 furlongs for trainer Stuart Simn. The gelding won the $40,000 claiming race in his 5th career race with Rafael Hernandez riding.

Six-year-old PROFESSOR HARTWICK won his maiden in race 2, a $7,500 claiming dash in his 19th career race. Robert Johnston owns, trains and also bred the son of Philanthropist.

Juan Crawford was the winning rider.

KAPELLMEISTER was one of 3 winners on Saturday for last year’s leading trainer NORM MCKNIGHT. The winter raced and trained horses will dominate the racing for a bit as the winter weather did not help the locals prepare their horses. KAPELLMEISTER, a Tapit gelding, rallied up the rail to win the starter allowance at 7 furlongs on Saturday for Racer’s Edge Inc.

McKnight also won with INGE (Wando Stakes) and DANZIG RAINBOW, owned by Rainbow Stables, who won for $10,000 claiming for her 2nd win in 11 races.

STAY DETERMINED, at the age of 6, won race 5 on Saturday, a $5,000 claiming event. Owned by Matties Racing and trained by Dorothy Gentner, the gelding showed just one, slow 3 furlong workout since November but was well prepared to win the 5 furlong race for his 6th win in 46 races. He was claimed by Jim Ensom.

Sam-Son Farms’ SWEET ROMANCE won an allowance race off the layoff, race 9, and was the second winner of the year for trainer Malcolm Pierce.

How about the stallion COLD HARBOR, the Ontario stud who had 1 starter from his first crop last year (stakes winner Eskiminzin) and now he has 2 starters, 2 winners.

OPEONGO won her career debut from the rail post for trainer Carlos Grant and owner/breeder Jecara Farms. This filly had several fast workouts in the summer of 2017 and she was simply long gone on the field and won in 58.40 under Jeff Alderson.

On Sunday – trainer DARWIN BANACH won a pair of races; one  with TRIPLLINDEE, a Signature Red 4yo filly for John Terdik and then later with EXECUTIVE SIGHT for Bill Sorokolit Jr. The latter was making his season debut and is a homebred by Court Vision. He is 2 for 11 in his career.

Race 2- First starter, first winner for Katerina Vassilieva as MAJESTIC HEIST won this $10,000 claiming race under Hernandez. The gelding was winter raced in Laurewl, Penn National and Parx.

Behind Majestic Heist near the finish an exhausted MIGHTY GENE (under Brittany Vanden Berg), who opened up a huge lead in the 5 furlong race and then was under heavy whipping when fading, fell and caused Lowi Vene (with Juan Crawford) to fall over him. Remarkably, no one was seriously hurt.

DENYSE MCCLACHRIE sent out her first starter of the meeting and won with TREETOP SINGER, a Florida bred making her 3rd career start and first of the year. Owned by Barry Kerbel, Treetop Singer was supposed to be ridden by Isabelle Wenc but that rider was injured on the weekend and will need about a month to recover. Luis Contreras picked up the mount.

The Mark Casse barn did not had a ton of luck on the weekend but SANITY won a starter allowance for owner Gabe Grossberg, It was her first start since September and it was her 4th win in 10 races.

The 8-year-old warrio DAN THE TIN MAN, a stakes winner in the past, won for the 9th time in his career in his return to Woodbine from Oaklawn. He didn’t much like Oaklawn or the dirt but won for $16,000 in his return for the McKnight/Schickedanz team.

SILENT POET sizzled in his predictable maiden score, race 6 on Sunday. The Stronach Stables colt, whose dam is a half sister to Preakness winner Red Bullet, posted an 86 Beyer Figure in his win. He raced once last year, in August, and was 2nd in an open race on turf. He had many fast workouts at Gulfstream but did not make a starter there, electing to try an optional claiming/maiden allowance. ick Gonzalez trains.

The Michael Trombetta shippers are often dangerous at Woodbine and that was the case with race 7 winner MAGICIAN’SQUESTION who romped to victory in this 5 1/2 furlong allowance race. She had many good workout times at Fair Hill training centre.

Sunday’s final race was won by Nick Nosowenko’s SWEET RETREAT, a 5yo mare by Limehouse who had run just once in 2-17 at the maiden allowance level and she was reappearing here for $12,500.



Gronkowski Could Be Out, Combatant would get in

GOOD MAGIC, the Champion Two-Year-Old in the US last year, has arrived at Churchill Downs Monday – Churchill Downs photo




1. Magnum Moon … 150 … $1,140,000
2. Good Magic … 134 … $1,838,400
3. Audible … 110 … $803,520
4 Noble Indy … 110 … $640,000
5. Vino Rosso … 7 … $572,500
6.Bolt d’Oro … 104 … $980,000
7. Enticed … 103 … $545,880
8.Mendelssohn … 107 … $1,947,299
9. Justify … 100 … $600,000
? 10. Quip … 90 … $412,000
11. Flameaway … 70 … $672,260
12. Solomini … 54 … $716,000
13. Bravazo … 54 … $359,913
14. My Boy Jack … 52 … $622,000
15. Promises Fulfilled … 52 …$256,480
16. Free Drop Billy … 44 … $597,200
17. Lone Sailor … 42 … $273,347
18.Hofburg … 40 … $320,000
19Firenze Fire … 39 … $647,500
? 20 Gronkowski … ERTKD … $79,587 (European Road to the Kentucky Derby invitee)

21 Combatant … 32 … $350,000
22 Instilled Regard … 29 … $246,000
23 Snapper Sinclair … 22 … $321,810
24 Blended Citizen … 22 … $129,644

Each day between 7 and 8 a.m. you can watch workouts at Churchill Downs.




ALLIFORD BAY – photo courtesy Patti Tubbs/Derby Bar & Grill


BLUE LAW won the Swift Thoroughbreds Inaugural Stakes and ALLIFORD BAY won the Brighouse Belles Stakes at Hastings  on opening weekend.

The beautifully bred ALLIFORD BAY is by City Zip out of Valentive fever and was a $150,000 2yo purchase by owner Peter Redekop 2 years ago.

The Brighouse Belles was her first start in Canada. Her 3rd dam is the Bold Ruckus mare RAMBUCKUS, a half sister to Kentucky Oaks winner GAL IN A RUCKUS.

RICHARD YATES REC-CAP – While Saturday’s opening day card was admittedly a little sparse, Sunday was a different story. Of the seven races offered, two were Stakes, there was one Allowance and three were Maiden Special Weights. One claimer filled out the card. The Brighouse Belles drew a field that included 4 stakes winners while the Swift Thoroughbreds Inaugural produced the maximum 11 allowed in sprints with 8 of the contestants having previously won stakes.


Florence & Syd Cooper


A memorial will be held today for SYD COOPER, 97, who passed away on the weekend. The master of RMC Stables raced and bred horses since 1972 and his familiar orange silks were still visible right up to late last year with runners such as Lilly’s Goldie and the 2-year-old Foxy B.

Mr. Cooper was one of these people who would always use your name when you met him. He was very approachable and personable.

Just last summer Mr. Cooper had the crowd at the CTHS Ontario Awards at Lionhead Golf Course in Mississauga in stitches with his acceptance speech upon receiving the Mint Julep Cup.

Mr. Cooper, a member of the C.T.H.S. since 1978, is also a long-time member of the H.P.B.A., the Jockey Club of Canada, an associate member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame, and contributes to LongRun Retirement Society. One of the most telling signs of Mr. Cooper’s loyalty to the Ontario racing industry can be seen in his dedication to homebreds.

His marriage to the late and lovely Florence in 1946, lead to 3 children, 10 grandchildren, and 9 great-grandchildren. Naming homebreds after this large
crew was easy.

In 1972, Mr. Cooper & his partner, C. J. Jackson, purchased a yearling at the C.T.H.S. sale by the name of Cambridge Miss for $27,000 and together they
embarked on a racing career. In 1977, the filly became Mr. Cooper’s initial foray into the breeding shed. After 2 years, he parted ways with Mr. Jackson and
continued with his children as partners resulting in nearly 120 foals to date.

Mr. Cooper is synonymous with his racing outfit, R.M.C. Stable. One of the first tastes of Stakes success came with the horse named after his grandson,
John the Magician, who won the 1997 Breeders’ Stakes. In keeping with his ‘giving back’ philosophy, Syd named a 1999 foal Espee Ess, after the School
of Practice Science at University of Toronto, and then donated a portion of its’ $235,401 earnings.

The R.M.C. Stable has continued to enjoy success with horses such as Brite Adam, who won the Plate Trial and went on to place 2nd in the 1998 Queen’s Plate and then stood at stud. Other Stakes successes include: Ascot Yael, Mister Coop, Aunt Els, Lynclar, Indian Dan, Kettle Rapids, Decew Falls, and the gritty Consolidator Joe, who finished in the top three in 25 of his 30 career starts and was named the Toronto Thoroughbred Racing Club’s “claimer of the year” in 2011.

Mr. Cooper’s own words are the most fitting when he says “Our family believes in the rule of the three T’s, the sharing of one’s Time, Talent and Treasure”


Sadly passed away at home surrounded by his family.

Born in Toronto, son of Toba and Abraham Cooper. Predeceased by Florence (2016), his beloved wife of 70 years. Attended Harbord Collegiate and University of Toronto School of Engineering graduating in 1945. He became part of the Training Corps at university and joined the Royal Canadian Engineers Officer Training Centre in Petawawa. He began his career as a civil engineer working throughout Canada for 4 decades building the infrastructure that was the foundation of this great country. He embraced a strong set of values that encompassed philanthropy in his local community and Israel. His professional skills and leadership qualities were valued by many. He served as chair and co-chair on the construction committees of The Mount Sinai Hospital, Baycrest/Apotex Centre, Baycrest Hospital and Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. Our father was a respected professional, a devoted baseball fan, and a loyal friend to many.

At Beth Sholom Synagogue, 1445 Eglinton Avenue, for service on Monday, April 23, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. Interment in the Beth Sholom Synagogue section of Mount Sinai Cemetery. Shiva at 625 Avenue Road West. Shiva visits daily following the interment from 1:00-4:00 p.m. and 7:00-9:00 p.m. Memorial donations may be made to the Baycrest Foundation, 416-785-2875 or Temmy Latner Centre For Palliative Care, 416-586-8203