All industry members who have not attended urged to do so in Milton



Port Perry meeting – Photo by Darryl Kaplan








“What do horsepeople do when they earn some money in the industry? They spend it!  New fencing, trucks, barns…”

There was a very large crowd of about 100 people at the Ontario Racing Consultation meeting in Port Perry, ON on Saturday afternoon and plenty of heartfelt, emotional comments and questions from the crowd of Quarter Horse, Thoroughbred and Standardbred horsepoeple.

The comment above was from Bernard McCormack from Cara Bloodstock, one of the bigger breeders of Thoroughbreds in Ontario, and McCormack was one of several people who talked about the framework that will be put together, from horsepeople’s wishes and comments, and presented to the Ontario government in January.

There is one meeting left, in Milton on Tuesday, and it is important that everyone with a stake in the industry attend at least one of these meetings.

At Saturday’s meeting, Rob Cool, executive director of OR said, “The government is saying right now that $93.4 million is on the table [for the next 17 years],” said Cook. “Do you want it or not? We’ll take back any answer you give us but we have to be prepared with an alternative. Right now we have an opportunity to get a government commitment but we don’t know that commitment will be there months from now.

Standardbred Canada summarized the meeting:

The OR presentation can be read here:



Ray Paulick speaks to members and media


The Jockey Club of Canada met for the final time in 2016 at Woodbine on Sunday morning with several announcements.

The SOVEREIGN AWARDS, currently set for Thursday April 6 2017, will now include a Groom of the Year Award and a sponsor for the awards has signed on and will be announced soon. The Jockey Club is also offered sponsorship packages from $1,000 to $15,000 which will get the buyer a litany of features including tickets, program ad, etc. This is an attempt to raise funds

The 2016 champion will be honoured at the Palais Royale, the first time the awards has been held away from Woodbine in several years.

RAY PAULICK of the and former editor of the Blood-Horse and writer for Daily Racing Form, was the guest speaker and he intrigued the audience with stories of his foray into horse racing and how he began the Paulick Repoer in 2008.

“We investigate and expose wrong doing in horse racing,” said Ray, who has built the site into one of the top go-to pages in horse racing.

A number of issues that Paulick says are critical to racing today include drugs, wagering and whips.

“Young people do not watch racing, or see racing, like we did years ago. We need to take care of the animal: whipping  must go.”

Ray said the new generation of horse racing lovers are going to be turned off by whipping in a race.

He also said handle has not grown in the last decade, in fact it has dropped by one-third. “There is too much emphasis placed on jackpot bets creating the illusion that people can get rich betting the races. What you end up with are people emptying out by chasing these bets.

The thrill of cashing a win ticket on a horse is gone.”

And drugs in racing is always an issue today in racing with Ray saying “Clenbuterol is a vastly abused drug in racing.”


Ray Paulick and yours truly and trainer Catherine Day Phillips (far right) at the Jockey Club of Canada meeting at Woodbine on Sunday – MR WILL WONG PHOTO








BOLD N’ FLASHY – 1989 – 2016

Track record setter, world traveler and multiple stakes winning stallion BOLD N’ FLASHY has passed away. He was 27 and died of natural causes.

Standing at T C Westmeath Stud since 1996, this wonderful son of Bold Ruckus won 10 of 41 races and over $360,000 in an era when purses were not very high. Bred and co-owned by Rom Romeo’s Terra Farms, also co-owned by Rocco Marcello, Bold n’ Flashy was a rapid fellow who ran at 9 tracks in his career including overseas. He was trained by Debbie England.

“Bold N Flashy was a super cool horse and could run a hole in wind,”, said Mike Romeo, grandson of Dom Romeo. “He broke the track record at the Meadowlands in the Mercer Raceabout S. covering 5 Furlongs in 55.70 then we shipped him to France to run on Arc weekend in the Prix de l’Abbaye de Longchamp where he finished 6th on a yielding turf. He ran in stakes at Woodbine, Meadowlands, Hollywood Park, Pimlico, Monmouth, Arlington, Churchill Downs, Calder, and in France (Longchamp), England (York), and Brazil (Gavea). He loved 5 Furlongs on a firm turf. Unfortunately back in the early 1990’s there wasn’t much opportunity or money for those type of runners. Today he probably could have made $1,000,000 running in the races he did.”

“As a stallion he had his fair share of stake winners in Paso Doble, Miss Crissy, Devastating, Whistling Maid, Dressed For Action, Bold Thunder, Flashy Margaritta and of course our homebred Marco Be Good. It’s also interesting he’s the 2nd dam sire on both 2016 Coronation Futurity winner King and His Court and 2015 champion Strut the Course.”

Here’s the video of his Prix de l’Abbaye de Longchamp and Nunthorpe

Bold n’ Flashy will  be remembered as one of the fastest horses this province has produced in the last few decades and a reliable stallion who gave us plenty of winners.


RIVER MAID brave in Bessarabian, favourite to win Sovereign Award for Female Sprinter 2016

88 Beyer Speed Figure in victory



MR WILL WONG grabbed this cool shot of the speed and determination of RIVER MAID (4) yesterday at Woodbine






The Very Dry Stable’s River Maid, patiently handled by birthday boy Gary Boulanger, arrived in the final stride to win Saturday’s $233,200 Grade 2 Bessarabian Stakes, at Woodbine.

Trained by Robert Tiller, the four-year-old daughter of Where’s the Ring came into the seven furlong Tapeta sprint from a third-place run in the Grade 3 Ontario Fashion, a six furlong sprint won by Bessarabian rival Southern Ring.

The added furlong made all the difference for River Maid in the Bessarabian as Boulanger, celebrating his 49th birthday, watched from fourth position as favoured Midnight Miley led through splits of :23.35 and :45.74 under pressure from Southern Ring.

Midnight Miley maintained a precarious lead through the turn before Southern Ring took over, but there was no denying the tremendous turn of foot from River Maid as the dark bay surged past her rival to secure a neck win. Southern Ring held place by a nose over Minks Aprise. River Maid stopped the clock in 1:21.85.

“She’s a hard trying mare,” said Boulanger. “She always shows up and gives you everything she has. A couple times this year, three-quarters might have been a little bit short for her but she always gave everything.”

Boulanger had great confidence in his mare heading into the event.

“She worked really well going into this race and she put me in a good position,” said Boulanger. “When I was that close at the five-sixteenths pole, I thought I could have a big piece of it if not all of it. She really dug in down the lane.”

Tiller, who was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2008, was keen to see River Maid stretch out after four straight starts travelling six furlongs.

“The difference is the distance. Six furlongs is too short for this filly. We’ve been waiting for a seven-eighths stake and we got the perfect trip,” said Tiller. “She’s game. She wants to win. We’ve been very careful with her aiming to this race and we really thought that seven-eighths was her distance.”

River Maid, bred in Ontario by Jay Cochlin, banked $144,000 in victory while improving her record to 7-3-2 from 14 starts.