Spring training is underway for those locals who have shipped in to the Woodbine backstretch and currently it is the sand ring and training track that are open for business.

The clockers will begin timing workouts on Sunday (March 11).

No date has been set for the opening of the main track.

The first condition book should be available digitally by week’s end or early next week.




The horse racing community is reminded that nominations for the CHRHF Class of 2018 close tomorrow, March 7, 2018 at 5:00 pm E.S.T.

We invite the public to participate in the nomination of people and horses who have made a significant contribution to Canadian Standardbred or Thoroughbred horse racing, for induction to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2018.

Nominations for the following will be considered:

• PERSON: Trainers, Drivers, Jockeys
• BUILDERS: Includes, but not limited to Breeders, Owners, Officials, and others.
• COMMUNICATORS: Includes, but not limited to Writers, Broadcasters, Photographers, Announcers, Bloggers
• VETERAN PERSON: Trainers, Drivers, Jockeys whose careers have been concluded for 20 years, but less than 50 years.
• MALE HORSE: Stallions or geldings whose contribution to Canadian racing occurred in the past 20 years.
• FEMALE HORSE: Mares whose contribution to Canadian racing occurred in the past 20 years.
• VETERAN HORSE: Horses whose careers have been concluded for 20 years, but less than 50 years.

All nomination submissions to be made using the form available on the CHRHF website at http://horseracinghalloffame.com/chrhf-2018-nomination-form/ . A copy of the form is also attached, or may be obtained by contacting admin@horseracinghalloffame.com. Complete eligibility criteria may be found at: http://horseracinghalloffame.com/inductees/eligibility/

For further information, or to submit a completed nomination form, contact:

Standardbred Nominations:
Darryl Kaplan, Standardbred Nomination Chair,
Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame
1-2150 Meadowvale Blvd.,
Mississauga, ON L5N 6R6
P: (905) 858-3060 ext. 241 F: (905) 858-3089
E: dkaplan@standardbredcanada.ca

Thoroughbred Nominations:
Tom Cosgrove, Thoroughbred Nomination Chair,
Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame
555 Rexdale Blvd., P.O. Box 156
Toronto, ON M9W 5L2
P: (416) 213-2113
E: tmc@woodbineentertainment.com

Nominations forms may also be submitted to:
Linda Rainey, Managing Director
Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame
P: (416) 417-9404
E: Linda.rainey@horseracinghalloffame.com

All submissions will be carefully considered by the Nominating Committee of the applicable breed.
A maximum of three finalists in each of five categories for Standardbreds and five categories for Thoroughbreds will be presented to the Election Committee for final voting by secret ballot.

The list of nominees selected for consideration by the Election Committee for each breed will be announced Monday, March 26, 2018. The Inductees for the 2018 class of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame will be announced on Tuesday, April 10, 2018.

We invite you to visit the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame located at the West Entrance of Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario. Additional information about the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame is available at www.canadianhorseracinghalloffame or by contacting admin@horseracinghalloffame.com or 416-417-9404.



Canadian-bred Flameaway tries Tampa Bay Derby


Triple Crown hopefuls and a trio of Grade I stakes winners are among the standout Thoroughbred performers expected to invade Tampa Bay Downs for Saturday’s stakes-laden Festival Day 38 card.

Total purse money for the five stakes is $1-million, an all-time track record. Both the Grade II, $400,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby for 3-year-olds on the main track and the Grade II, $225,000 Hillsborough Stakes for fillies and mares 4-years-old-and-upward on the turf have been increased to record purse levels.

The other stakes on the program are the Grade III, $200,000 Florida Oaks for 3-year-old fillies on the turf; the $100,000 Challenger Stakes for horses 4-years-old-and-upward on the main track; and the $75,000 Columbia Stakes for 3-year-olds on the turf.

The 38th edition of the mile-and-a-sixteenth Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, which has produced two Kentucky Derby winners in Street Sense (the 2007 Tampa Bay Derby winner) and Super Saver (the 2010 Tampa Bay Derby third-place finisher), is a “Road to the Kentucky Derby” Prep Race, awarding points to the first four finishers on a 50-20-10-5 scale toward qualifying for the May 5 Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs.

This year’s Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby is expected to feature a rematch between the first and third-place finishers in the Grade III Sam F. Davis Stakes here on Feb. 10.

Sam F. Davis winner Flameaway, owned by John C. Oxley and trained by Mark Casse, boasts a 5-for-7 record that includes four stakes victories. Oxley and Casse teamed to win the 2012 Tampa Bay Derby with Prospective.

Vino Rosso, who staged a belated rally to finish third in the Sam F. Davis, is owned by Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable – the latter entity a partner in last year’s Kentucky Derby winner, Always Dreaming, who had broken his maiden at Tampa Bay Downs that January.

Todd Pletcher, who trains Vino Rosso, will be seeking his fourth consecutive Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby victory and sixth overall. Pletcher has won the race with Tapwrit (2017), Destin (2016), Carpe Diem (2015), Verrazano (2013) and Limheouse (2004).

Another trainer to have won multiple runnings of the Oldsmar showcase, H. Graham Motion, is expected to enter West Point Thoroughbreds’ Untamed Domain, a Grade II winner who finished second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf in November at Del Mar.

Motion won the 2014 Tampa Bay Derby with Ring Weekend and the 2002 renewal with Equality.

Still another conditioner expected to seek “déjà vu all over again” is Kenneth McPeek, who trains probable Grandpa Knows Best for owner Fern Circle Stables. McPeek won the race in 1999 with Pineaff.

Other expected entrants include multiple Grade II-placed Tiz Mischief, owned by Frank L. Jones, Jr., and trained by Dale Romans; this season’s Pasco Stakes winner World of Trouble, owned by Michael Dubb and trained by Jason Servis; Quip, owned by WinStar Farm, China Horse Club International and SF Racing and trained by Rodolphe Brisset; and Inaugural Stakes runner-up Arazi Like Move, owned by Loooch Racing Stables and trained by Aldana Gonzalez.

The 20th staging of the mile-and-an-eighth Hillsborough Stakes appears set to bring together a star-studded assembly of turf-loving females, headed by Grade I winners Daddys Lil Darling, La Coronel and Off Limits.




Sir Dudley Digges headed to Woodbine

The Mike Maker stable at Woodbine, Barn 3, will soon be filled with some exciting runners and Nolan Ramsey will be running the show for his boss. Ramsey’s grandparents will own most of the horses.

Here is a post Gold Cup story from the Nation News about the “strangely run race”:

by Lindon Yarde

Sandy Lane Gold Cup Day at the Garrison Savannah last Saturday was a resounding success. For some it was an occasion to meet old friends, for others it was about the pomp, and pageantry. However, to the purist, racing was at its pinnacle.