“He’s seven years old and we thought we’d try him in the longer races this season. We thought that horse (Beckham Bend) would be sent out there to set a good pace, so we planned on sitting off of him and then get first run on the others when it came time. Emma rode a good race. We’ve had a lot of success together back home.” – IAN BLACK

“He’ll spend the spring at Keeneland. I don’t know whether we’ll run him in that race at the end of the meet,” said Black, referring to the Sycamore Stakes. “But there will be plenty of opportunities for him up north during the (Woodbine) season.” IAN BLACK

Whew, did you catch all that action from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. yesterday?

From the wild finish in the DUBAI WORLD CUP with VICTOIRE PISA scoring for Japan to star Canadian boy RAHY’S ATTORNEY in the Grade 3 Pan American at Gulfstream and right to the Louisiana Derby, it was one heck of a ride all day long.



He is unquestionably Canada’s shining star and now RAHY’S ATTORNEY has a graded stakes in the United States to his credit.

Under a perfect ride by EMMA-JAYNE WILSON, who was riding the champ for the very first time, ‘RAHY’ skipped away to the lead on the last turn of the 1 1/2 mile turf test and held off Muskatier to win the $150,000 race. The son of Crown Attorney, bred and  owned by Joe and Ellen MacLellan and family plus partners, is trained by Ian Black.

This corner was the first to wonder about the gelding’s ability to win at the 12 furlong distance but has Black said after the race, he thought it would be easier on him now that he is older and boy, was he right.

Rahy posted a 98 Beyer Figure for his win, his 13th in 37 races (he has 13 2nds and 3rds) and now he is on the verge of hitting $2 million in earnings.

The 7-year-old has been 1st or 2nd in his last 6 races with 5 different jockeys on 4 different turf courses.


Perhaps the gelding will grab another Sovereign Award this coming Friday too for his exploits in 2010, we will see.


Wilson also won on THUNDER BALL on the Gulfstream card, for the Stronach Stables and trainer Reade Baker. It was Baker’s first win of 2011 and Thunder Ball was racing for $50,000 claiming.


With all the talk about CHANTAL SUTHERLAND in recent weeks (she won the Grade 1 Aanta Anita Handicap and then announced she would not return to Woodbine this year), Wilson is already setting things up for a super 2011 campaign when she is has a chance to battle for leading rider honours.


Speaking of Sutherland, there was not much the rider could do with the Canadian-bred filly INGLORIOUS in the Fair Grounds Oaks yesterday. The Hennessy filly, 2nd in the Rachel Alexandra Stakes in her 2011 opener and a 2-time stakes winner at Woodbine last year, was all the rage in the Oaks at 6 to 5, went in after being installed the Queen’s Plate favourite in the early odds despite being a filly, but she sputtered home 4th under heavy pressure.

Inglorious ran an 80 Beyer Figure.

Trainer Josie Carroll: “We’re a little disappointed. She didn’t get the opportunity to kick home the way she normally would, you know, sit back and wait and kick home. But she ran her race against nice horses and hopefully she comes out of it well and that’s all we can ask for.

Might the Kentucky Oaks still be under consideration? “I have absolutely no idea until we see how she comes out of it. I talked to the owners and we determined we’re going to analyze the race and then we’ll decide whether she should go in that direction or not.”

Jockey Chantal Sutherland : “She broke really good; Josie’s schooled her in the gate. I thought Josie did a great job. She felt good and everything. We came to the stretch and usually she has a huge punch and today we had no punch. It’s pretty hot today and could’ve been a whole lot of things, but I know what kind of filly she is. To be fourth is pretty good. She was exactly herself but you never know until your on them. I mean, from Josie’s point of view, she’s absolutely perfect.”

As a daughter of turf stakes winner Noble Strike, perhaps Polytrack and grass will be better for her down the road.


Meanwhile, ELITE ALEX ran well enough in the Louisiana Derby to be considered the top Plate horse right now along with Bowman’s Causeway, who will race next weekend in the Florida Derby.

see more about Elite Alex below:

IT’S NO LIE – PANTS ON FIRE upsets in Louisiana

Canadian colt rallies for 4th


George and Lori Hall and trainer Kelly Breen sold their top 3yo prospect SWEET DUCKY for a while pile of money to overseas interests (the colt did not do much in the USE Derby yesterday) but look out, they got a prospect anyway.

PANTS ON FIRE (By Jump Start), cleverly named I guess, would not let anyone by through the long Fair Grounds stretch yesterday and won the $1 million Louisiana Derby, the first million dollar race run in New Orleans.

The race, the 96th edition, has never been much of a Kentucky Derby prep as it were, but Pants on Fire will reportedly go straight to the Derby now and he will have red-hot rider Rosie Napravnik, 23, on board.

The winner was always stalking the pace close up and had a rail rallying NEHRO (Mineshaft) rushing up his inside and an unfortunate MUCHO MACHO MAN on his outside. The latter lost a shoe in the gate, plus a bit of his foot apparently, but ran super.

He may still be in trouble at 10 furlongs (he has the sprinter Ponche on his mum’s side) but he’s still pretty good.

PANTS ON FIRE is the 2nd foal of the Cape Town mare Cabo de Noche, a winner once in 16 races.


Canadian-bred ELITE ALEX ran a good race and it was obvious that the tactics were to takehim back and try to make a run. Too bad the son of Afleet Alex dropped way back and then had to rally many horses wide and he closed mildly to be 4th. Would love to see ELITE ALEX try the Derby but gosh, he is certainly the leading QUEEN’S PLATE contender right now for owners Elite Alex Racing and trainer Tim Ritchey.




VICTOIRE for Japan! Vanessa Ng captures the Dubai World Cup finish


There was a lot to take in the $26 million Dubai World Cup card at Meydan that began early in the morning. It was a smorgasbord.

It was victory for Japan, rocked by that awful earthquake and tsunami, as VICTOIRE PISA surged late and won in a multi-horse photo for his 8th win in 13 races. The son of Neo Universe (by Sunday Silence) was 3rd in the Japn Cup and 8th in the Arc and he was making his all-weather surface debut. He has earned in the neighbourhood of $12.8 million now.



The charge to the finish of the World Cup 0 Victoire Pisa is 2nd from right, Gio Ponti is at far left. Vanessa Ng photo 





Old timer J J THE JET PLANE, making only his  6th start since 2009, won the 5 furlong turf dash called the Al Quoz Sprint. It was his 14th win in 26 races and he is by Jet Master (SAf) and was bred in South Africa.

SKYSURFERS (E Dubai) won the Godolphin Mile for his 4th win in his 10th race for Godolphin – he is truly an all weather freak as he is 0 for 4 on the grass.

The filly KHAWLAH beat the boys in the UAE DERBY, another Godolphin win. The daughter of Cape Cross (Ire) is 3 for 5 in her career and she won the stretch battle over Master of Hounds.

The Langfuhr dude EUROEARS gave it his all in the 6 furlong Golden Shaheen but the very tough ROCKET MAN blasted by for his 14th win his just 18 races. He is an Australia-bred by Viscount, a son of Quest for Fame.

The Dubai Duty Free was a frantic finish with PRESVIS winning his 3rd try in the race. The 7yo by Sakhee (Rahy) is 8 for 23 in his career with well over $6million in career earnings.

The Sheema Classic, at 12 furlongs on the grass was won by REWILDING, more Godolphin, who beat Redwood, who won last year’s Northern Dancer Stakes at Woodbine.

Rewilding is an GB-bred by Tiger Hill (Ire) and he is 4 for 8 in his career.






 The Spiral – Cindy Pierson Dulay photo





Team Valor’s pair of 2yos, Animal Kingdom (Leroidesanimeaux) and CRIMSON CHINA ran well at Turfway yesterday in a pair of 2yo stakes.

The former posted a 91 Beyer Figure in his professional style win in the rich Spiral Stakes while the latter closed fast in the Rushaway after dropping far back in the early stages.


In focus – ANIMAL KINGDOM wins the Spiral, ears pricked Matt Wooley/EquiSports photo



Animal Kingdom had won his maiden and was 2nd in a turf allowance at Gulfstream last time and was making his 4th start. He was a $100,000 buy back as a yearling at auction, He was ridden by Alan Garcia for trainer Graham Motion.

It was TURF TO POLY day at Turfway as the Rushaway winner SWIFT WARRIOR  (First Samurai) was coming off a 4th in a Gulfstream grass race before leading all the way in his first stakes win. Crimson China (Giant’s Causeway) was coming off a Gulfstream grass win.


Earlier on the Turfway card, Canadian-bred 3yo STRIKE AHEAD had a messy debut outing in traffic and was 6th with a 33 Beyer.

The colt is a Sam-Son bred by Smart Strike owned by WinStar.



Beginning on opening day next Saturday, the takeout on the Triactor wager at Woodbine the HORSEPLAYERS ASSOCIATION ran this ad and gave it thumbs up!









Thanks to the latest entries for our Sovereign award contest! One week left in the contest, try and guess the winners of the horse

awards (see list of nominees below) and win MURIEL LENNOX’S new book, THE HORSE AND THE TIGER!

Champion Two-Year-Old Filly:

Delightful Mary

Roxy Gap


Champion Two-Year-Old Male:

Blue Laser

Madman Diaries

Rockin Heat

Champion Three-Year-Old Filly:


Free Fee Lady

Roan Inish

Champion Three-Year-Old Male:

Big Red Mike


No Hesitation

Champion Older Female:

Hooh Why

Impossible Time

Simply Splendid

Champion Older Male:

Sand Cove


Stunning Stag

Champion Turf Female:

Mekong Melody (IRE)

Miss Keller (IRE)

Perfect Shirl

Champion Turf Male:

Grand Adventure

Rahy’s Attorney

Windward Islands

Champion Female Sprinter:

Hooh Why

Indian Apple Is

Sugar Again

Champion Male Sprinter:

Essence Hit Man

Hollywood Hit

Smokey Fire