Dec 092015

The horse racing symposium in Arizona and the recent climate talks in Paris have much in common.


All the participants are there on someone else’s dime, everything’s rosy and upbeat, the participants pay lip service to the hundreds of  ideas on how to save the industry and the world, then everyone heads home and carries on exactly the same way they did before.

Horse race Insider – Jicha – Racing invites new ideas but probably will ignore them

Everybody wants to save the world but nobody wants to help mom with the dishes.

P.J. O’Rourke

Lady and the Track – Horse Racing Fan Holiday Gift Guide 2015

Most of the horse racing fans Phil knows want the same thing for Christmas: cash to play Santa Anita on Boxing Day.

DRF – Hovdey: Nourishment to go with your egg nog

Change always comes bearing gifts. 

Price Pritchett

Bloodhorse – Teacher Wins TwinSpires Handicapping Contest

TwinSpires Blog – Teacher Wins TwinSpires Online Handicapping Championship

TwinSpires Blog – DeRosa – Gamble on Proctor Pays Off for TwinSpires Online Handicapping Series Championship Winner Vanwinkle

DRF – Fornatale: Collier wraps up his NHC seat


Horse Race Insider – Pricci – PVal’s Legacy: Tragedy or Triumph?

Bloodhorse – Mobile Bay Eyes Louisiana Champions Classic

Merry Christmas-New Years

Horse Race Insider – Pricci – Back To The Present

TwinSpires Blog – partners with Fair Grounds as Louisiana Derby/Oaks sponsor 

Legal Sports Report – Grove – Daily Fantasy Sports Grabs Victory From Jaws Of Defeat In NY Court Battle

Legal Sports Report – Grove – Daily Fantasy Sports Face Dim Future In New York After Judge Hands Win To Attorney General


Bloodhorse – Harlan’s Holiday Comes Up Strong

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Crispe – The ‘inspirational’ businessman, the Breeders’ Cup star, and the trainer they’re all talking about

DRF – Grening – Aqueduct inner track opens with $123,347 pick six carryover


Saturday December 12 2015

Pick 6    $134,344.00
Gulfstream Park
Pick 6 Jackpot    $12,600.00
Super High Five Jackpot    $191,253.00
Pick 6 Jackpot    $626.00
Laurel Park
Pick 6    $43,830.00
Z-5 Super Hi-5     $2,976.00
Pick 5    $1,846.00
Z-5 Super Hi-5     $1,489.00
Tampa Bay Downs
X-5 Super High Five     $3,578.00
Super High Five     $3,572.00
X-5 Super High Five     $1,475.00
Zia Park
Super High Five     $3,852.00

Guaranteed Pools

Equibase Carryovers and Guaranteed Pools

Bloodhorse – Angst – Symposium: Panel Gives 45 Ideas in 45 Minutes

DRF – Hegarty – Symposium: Sophisticated number-crunching may be future of handicapping

Phil has a suggestion:

Instead of looking at myriad ways to re-invent the wheel why don’t the tracks look at the easiest and best known way to grow and maintain a customer base – better customer service.

A business absolutely devoted to service will have only one worry about profits.  They will be embarrassingly large.

Henry Ford

DRF – Hegarty – Symposium on lookout for new ideas

Bloodhorse – Angst – Symposium: Innovators Offer Variety of Ideas

TDN Hoffman – Innovative Ideas Abound at Arizona Symposium

Bloodhorse – Angst – Symposium: Opportunities in Digital Marketing

DRF – Hegarty – Symposium: Sophisticated number-crunching may be future of handicapping

DRF – Hegarty – Sweepstakes idea wins award at Symposium



Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Durenberger – Medication: Is America actually asking too much of the NUMP initiative?

TwinSpires Blog – Reilly – HK Vase preview: Flintshire confronts real challenges to his crown 

TwinSpires Blog – Reilly – HK Sprint: Mongolian Saturday tries to conquer the world

This Weekend’s  Stakes

Dec 12
Bay Ridge stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 8.5f Dirt
Charles Town
Eleanor Casey Memorial $50,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 7f Dirt
Fair Grounds
Louisiana Champions Day Classic stake $150,000 3&up State/Prov 9f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day handicap $50,000 3&up State/Prov 8.32f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile stake $100,000 2yo State/Prov 6f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Ladies stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 8.5f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Ladies Sprint stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 6f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Lassie stake $100,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 6f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Sprint stake $100,000 3&up State/Prov 6f Dirt
Louisiana Champions Day Turf stake $100,000 3&up State/Prov abt 8.5f Turf
Gulfstream Park
El Prado stake $100,000 3&up 7.5f Turf
Harlan’s Holiday Stake (L) $100,000 3&up 8.5f Dirt
Rampart Stake GIII $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8f Dirt
South Beach stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 7.5f Turf
Jim Edgar Illinois Futurity $50,000 2yo Colts & Geldings State/Prov 8.5f Dirt
Japan Racing Association
Challenge Cup GIII $723,000 3&up 9f Turf

Los Alamitos
King Glorious Stake $100,000 g 2yo c/g State/Prov 8f
Starlet GI $300,000 2yo f 8.5f Dirt

Dec 13
Golden Gate Fields
Miss America $50,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Turf
Hong Kong
Longines Hong Kong Cup GI $3,225,000 3&up 10f Turf
Longines Hong Kong Mile GI $2,967,000 3&up 8f Turf
Longines Hong Kong Sprint GI $2,386,000 3&up 6f Turf
Longines Hong Kong Vase GI $2,128,000 3&up 12f Turf
Japan Racing Association
Capella Stake GIII $633,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Hanshin Juvenile Fillies GI $1,173,000 2yo Fillies 8f Turf
Remington Park
Jim Thorpe stake $50,000 3yo State/Prov 8f Dirt
Remington Springboard Mile (L) $250,000 2yo 8f Dirt
She’s All In stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8.32f Dirt
Trapeze stake $100,000 2yo Fillies 8f Dirt
Useeit stake $50,000 3yo Fillies State/Prov 8f Dirt

Dec 18
Delta Downs
Lookout $65,000 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 7.5f Dirt

Dec 19
Queens County handicap $100,000 3&up 9f Dirt
Delta Downs
B-Connected $65,000 3&up State/Prov 7.5f Dirt
Fair Grounds
Blushing K.D. stake $60,000 4&up Fillies & Mares abt 8.5f Turf
Buddy Diliberto Memorial stake $60,000 4&up abt 8.5f Turf
Letellier Memorial stake $50,000 2yo Fillies 6f Dirt
Sugar Bowl stake $50,000 2yo 6f Dirt
Tenacious stake $60,000 3&up 8.32f Dirt
Tiffany Lass stake $50,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8.32f Dirt
Gulfstream Park
Mr. Prospector Stake GIII $100,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Tropical Park Derby $75,000 3yo 8.5f Turf
Tropical Park Oaks $75,000 3yo Fillies 8.5f Turf
Japan Racing Association
Turquoise Stake (L) $633,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8f Turf

Los Alamitos
Los Alamitos Futurity GI $350,000 2yo 8.5f
Sunland Park
KLAQ handicap $65,000 3&up 5f Dirt
Tampa Bay Downs
Inaugural stake #$100,000 2yo Colts & Geldings 6f Dirt
Lightning City Stake (L) #$100,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 5f Turf
Sandpiper stake #$100,000 2yo Fillies 6f Dirt
Turfway Park
Prairie Bayou stake #$60,000 3&up 8.5f AW

Dec 20
New York Stallion Series (Fifth Ave. Div.) $150,000 2yo Fillies R 6f Dirt
Japan Racing Association
Asahi Hai Futurity Stake GI $1,274,000 2yo 8f Turf
Sunland Park
Johnie L. Jamison stake $85,000 3&up State/Prov 6.5f Dirt
Sunland Park
New Mexico State Racing Commission handicap $85,000 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 6f Dirt

Dec 26
Damon Runyon stake $100,000 2yo State/Prov 8.32f Dirt
Gravesend handicap $100,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Fair Grounds
Pago Hop stake $75,000 3yo Fillies abt 8f Turf
Pan Zareta stake $60,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 6f Turf
Woodchopper stake $75,000 3yo abt 8f Turf
Gulfstream Park
La Prevoyante Handicap GIII $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 12f Turf
Sugar Swirl Stake GIII $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 6f Dirt
W.L. McKnight Handicap GIII $100,000 3&up 12f Turf
Japan Racing Association
Hanshin Cup GII $1,173,000 3&up 7f Turf
Laurel Park
Dave’s Friend stake $100,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Jennings handicap $50,000 3&up State/Prov 8f Dirt
Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship $50,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 7f Dirt
Maryland Juvenile Futurity $50,000 2yo State/Prov 7f Dirt
Thirty-Eight Go Go stake $100,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 8f Dirt
Santa Anita Park
Daytona Stake GIII $100,000 3&up abt 6.5f Turf
La Brea Stake GI $300,000 3yo Fillies 7f Dirt
Malibu Stake GI $300,000 3yo 7f Dirt
Mathis Brothers Mile GII $200,000 3yo 8f Turf
Sunland Park
La Senora stake $85,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 6f Dirt
Turf Paradise
Arizona Juvenile Fillies stake $35,000 2yo Fillies 6.5f Dirt
Lost in the Fog Juvenile stake $35,000 2yo 6.5f Dirt

Dec 27
East View stake $100,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 8.32f Dirt
New York Stallion Series (Great White Way Div.) $150,000 2yo Colts & Geldings R 6f Dirt
Japan Racing Association
Arima Kinen GI $4,530,000 3&up 12.5f Turf
Hopeful Stake GII $1,173,000 2yo 10f Turf
Portland Meadows
Bill Wineberg stake $15,000 2yo Colts & Geldings State/Prov 6f Dirt
Janet Wineberg stake $15,000 2yo Fillies State/Prov 6f Dirt
Lethal Grande Oregon Sprint Championship $12,000 3&up State/Prov 6f Dirt
Oregon Distaff Starter handicap $7,500 g 3&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 6f Dirt
Oregon Fall Starter handicap $7,500 g 3&up State/Prov 6f Dirt
Oregon Hers stake $12,000 3yo Fillies State/Prov 8f Dirt
Oregon His stake $12,000 3yo Colts & Geldings State/Prov 8.5f Dirt

Louisville Courier-Journal -Lintner – After Shared Belief, Rome to stay in racing

ESPN – Cronley – Dogged determination

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – Derby odds | Mohaymen the new favorite

ESPN – Ehalt – History says future not Rose-y for Nyquist

I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.
Thomas Jefferson

2016 Road to the Kentucky Derby

The 142nd running of the $2 million guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I) will be run Saturday, May 7, 2016, and for the fourth consecutive year, a tiered point system in select races will determine who qualifies to America’s greatest race.
Race    Track    Date    Points
Los Alamitos Futurity Los Alamitos Race Course Dec 19, 2015 10-4-2-1
Jerome Aqueduct Jan 9, 2016 10-4-2-1
Sham Santa Anita Park Jan 16, 2016 10-4-2-1
Smarty Jones Oaklawn Park Jan 18, 2016 10-4-2-1
Holy Bull Gulfstream Park Jan 30, 2016 10-4-2-1
Withers Aqueduct Feb 13, 2016 10-4-2-1
Robert B. Lewis Santa Anita Park Feb 13, 2016 10-4-2-1
Southwest Oaklawn Park Feb 15, 2016 10-4-2-1
El Camino Real Derby Golden Gate Fields Feb 20, 2016 10-4-2-1
Fountain of Youth Gulfstream Park Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Risen Star Fair Grounds Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Gotham Aqueduct Mar 12, 2016 50-20-10-5
Tampa Bay Derby Tampa Bay Downs Mar 12, 2016 50-20-10-5
San Felipe Santa Anita Park Mar 12, 2016 50-20-10-5
Rebel Oaklawn Park Mar 19, 2016 50-20-10-5
Sunland Derby Sunland Park Mar 20, 2016 50-20-10-5
Spiral Turfway Park Mar 26, 2016 50-20-10-5
UAE Derby Meydan Racecourse Mar 26, 2016 100-40-20-10
Florida Derby Gulfstream Park Apr 2, 2016 100-40-20-10
Louisiana Derby Fair Grounds Apr 2, 2016 100-40-20-10
Wood Memorial Aqueduct Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Blue Grass Keeneland Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Santa Anita Derby Santa Anita Park Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Arkansas Derby Oaklawn Park Apr 16, 2016 100-40-20-10
Lexington Keeneland Apr 16, 2016 10-4-2-1

Bloodhorse – Baffert, Hollendorfer Take Aim on Starlet

DRF – Andersen – Grass will have to wait for Pacific Heat

Bloodhorse – Shulman – Starlet to Test Pacific Heat

DRF – Andersen – Opportunity knocks for nine fillies in Starlet

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – Once-beaten Stays in Vegas takes on Pretty N Cool in Starlet

2016 Road to the Kentucky Oaks

Race    Track    Date      Points
Starlet    Los Alamitos Race Course Dec 12, 2015 10-4-2-1
Santa Ynez    Santa Anita Park Jan 9, 2016 10-4-2-1
Busanda    Aqueduct Jan 16, 2016 10-4-2-1
Silverbulletday    Fair Grounds Jan 23, 2016 10-4-2-1
Forward Gal    Gulfstream Park Jan 30, 2016 10-4-2-1
Martha Washington    Oaklawn Park Feb 6, 2016 10-4-2-1
Las Virgenes    Santa Anita Park Feb 6, 2016 10-4-2-1
UAE Oaks    Meydan Racecourse Feb 25, 2016 50-20-10-5
Busher    Aqueduct Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Davona Dale    Gulfstream Park Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Rachel Alexandra   Fair Grounds Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Santa Ysabel    Santa Anita Park Mar 5, 2016 50-20-10-5
Honeybee    Oaklawn Park Mar 12, 2016 50-20-10-5
Sunland Park Oaks    Sunland Park Mar 20, 2016 50-20-10-5
Bourbonette Oaks    Turfway Park Mar 26, 2016 50-20-10-5
Gulfstream Park Oaks    Gulfstream Park Apr 2, 2016 100-40-20-10
Fair Grounds Oaks    Fair Grounds Apr 2, 2016 100-40-20-10
Santa Anita Oaks    Santa Anita Park Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Gazelle    Aqueduct Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Ashland   Keeneland Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Fantasy    Oaklawn Park Apr 9, 2016 100-40-20-10
Beaumont    Keeneland Apr 17, 2016 10-4-2-1

Bloodhorse – Claiming Crown Handle Tops $10 Million

Bloodhorse – Hanging With Haskin – Turf and Sport Digest Days

Bloodhorse – Angst – Ownership Clubs Low-Risk Way to Try Racing

TwinSpires Blog – Top 10 U.S. racing performances of 2015

TDN – DeBernardis – Down the Shedrow with Dale Romans

From the Derby Bar and Grill Newsletter







Hastings News by Greg Douglas



Square Dancer Completes Cinderella 2015 Story

Three New B.C. Racing Hall of Fame Inductees


Vancouver, B.C. (Dec. 7/15) — Russell and Lois Bennett didn’t just visit the podium at the 2015 Thoroughbred Awards Dinner.  They owned it.

Affectionately known as the Royal Couple of British Columbia’s racing industry, Mr. & Mrs. Bennett proudly walked off with six honours and shared in a seventh at the annual salute to outstanding performances at Hastings Racecourse.

Members of the Canadian and British Columbia Horse Racing Halls of Fame, the popular Kelowna couple swept both the Leading Breeders and Leading Owners awards for the 2015 season.

They then returned to the prize table to collect silverware in five more categories, including the prestigious B.C. Bred Horse of the Year as owners of three-time stakes winner Touching Promise.

“We’ve been breeding and owning horses since the 1950’s and it never gets old,” Russell said.  “I cannot say enough about our trainer Barb Heads and her team in the backstretch. They’ve been great.”

Touching Promise was recognized as Champion Older Filly/Mare in the B.C. Bred and Open Divisions.  The Bennett’s Brass & Gold was named Champion Older Male B.C. Bred Division while Catz on Fire shared Champion 3-year-old Male B.C. Bred Division honors with Cederberg and Mighty Fraser, both trained by Hall of Famer Troy Taylor.


Square Dancer Wins Open Horse of the Year

  Calling it “an amazing run”, trainer Steve Henson happily accepted Open Horse of the Year honours representing the 200 equal ownership partners of Square Dancer, the 5-year-old gelding who authored a true Cinderella story in 2015.

Running under the blue and white colours of the Hastings Racing Club, Square Dancer won three races in four starts, including the $100,000 Redekop Classic on BC Cup Day (Aug. 3) and the $75,000 S.W. Randall Plate (Sept. 13) before finishing second in the $100,000 Grade 3 Premiers Handicap (Oct. 12).

“It’s been a real rush for me,” Henson told the sold-out Awards Dinner gathering.  “I love to talk, I love people and I love this industry.  Was I the right guy for the job?  Damn right!  Thank you Team Henson and thank you Mr. Todd for picking me.  Good thing you did.”

That was ‘Mr. Todd’ as in Glen, who along with Hastings Racecourse General Manager Darren MacDonald and Club Manager Richard Yates received the Diamond Award of Excellence for their input in introducing the initiative whereby 200 racing fans each invested $250 to become ownership partners in the Hastings Racing Club.

The concept caught on to the point that the Club will be expanded to 300 members in 2016 and already a second Club of 200 members is well into its formation for next season.


Three New Inductees join BC Horse Racing Hall of Fame

 Strait of Dover, owned by Kelowna’s Wally and Terry Leong, in 2012 became the first horse bred in British Columbia to win the Queen’s Plate at Woodbine and was duly acknowledged as a 2015 inductee into the B.C. Horse Racing Hall of Fame.

Hastings Racecourse track announcer of 25 years Dan Jukich and longtime owner and breeder Dixie Jacobson were also honoured as 2015 Hall of Fame members.

The 2015 HBPA Backstretch Award for outstanding contribution to the betterment of racing and the backstretch environment went to Hall of Fame trainer Harold Barroby.


Complete List of Individual 2015 Award Winners

 Leading Jockey:  Richard Hamel; Leading Trainer: Mike Anderson; Leading Owners: R.J. & Lois Bennett.

Champion 2-year-old Filly, BC Bred & Open:  C U At Eau Claire; Champion 2-year-old Male, BC Bred & Open: Stanz in Command; Champion 3-year-old Filly, BC Bred: Quatre Cat; Champion 3-year-old Filly, Open: Academic; Champion 3-year-old Male, BC Bred: Catz on Fire, Cederberg, Mighty Fraser; Champion 3-year-old Male, Open: Bluegrass Angus; Champion Older Filly/Mare, BC Bred & Open:  Touching Promise; Champion Older Male, BC Bred: Brass and Gold; Champion Older Male, Open:  Square Dancer; Champion Sprinter: Modern; BC Bred Horse of the Year: Touching Promise; Open Horse of the Year: Square Dancer.

Paulick Report – Mirahmadi Resigns From Oaklawn, Will Split Announcing Duties At Santa Anita

TwinSpires Blog – Mucciolo – Speed was the theme last week; Browse, Send It In & Sustainable among horses to watch at Aqueduct

Lady and The Track – Macatangay – California Chrome Pointing Towards Santa Anita, Dubai

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – California Chrome readies for San Pasqual with five-furlong move

TDN – Severni – El Kabeir Preps for Malibu

Bloodhorse – Hammonds – Runhappy Drills Five Furlongs in Malibu Prep


TwinSpires Blog – Scully – Madefromlucky, War Correspondent among notables in Gulfstream stakes

Bloodhorse – Cali Star Heads Wolfson Trio in Rampart

Bloodhorse – Ramseys Win 2nd Breeders Cup John Deere Award

TwinSpires Blog – Haskin, Burroughs elected to Joe Hirsch Media Roll of Honor 

INDIAN CHARLIE WORLDWIDE - We Never Let the Truth Get In The Way Of A Good Story

Bloodhorse – POLL: Rank the Triple Crown Winners

TwinSpires Blog – American Pharoah selected for 2015 Secretariat Vox Populi Award 

Bloodhorse – ‘Pharoah’ Halter, ’85 Derby Trophy in Auction

Bloodhorse – Online Hat Auction to Benefit Old Friends

Bloodhorse – ITBOA Online Stallion Season Auction Underway

Bloodhorse – Genaro – NYRA: Handle, Attendance, Income Increase


January 15 – 17 2016

Sheraton Red Deer

3310 – 50 Avenue
Red Deer, Alberta, T4N 3X9 Canada

Bloodhorse – Johnson – California Shipper Looks Strong in Springboard Mile 

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – String King seeking a Grand Slam on Louisiana Champions Day

Lady and the Track – Mendoza – Unbeaten Filly Sobradora Inc Takes The Gran Premio Copa de Plata In Argentina


Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Hickman – Eleven stallions who made it big after getting a second chance

National Post – Hopper – Rural rage: Alberta farmers steal page from French with rolling protests over NDP’s new safety bill

Highlights of Bill 6 – Enhanced Protection for Farm and Ranch Workers Act

For any further information or if you require help with training and compliance contact

Bloodhorse – Lessons from Ontario – by Eric Mitchell

Giving horseplayers a voice.

Bloodhorse – Tonalist Retired to Lane’s End

Bloodhorse – Upcoming Open Houses, Stallion Shows

Bloodhorse – Cliff Berry to Cap Career in Springboard Mile

Bullet briefs . . .
Bonus cash continues with weekly deposits into your HPI account!
• Injured Alyssa buys house; Dunn thanks Baffert for Pharoah halter
• Live racing in 2016 to feature more Sunday nights, later posts
• What were your better bettor tracks for November?
• Coolidge, second in Winnipeg Futurity, wins Arizona Futurity
• Race-caller Denman retires from Santa

LAST CHANCE PICK-3: This is the wind-up week for the pick-3.  Predict the pick-3 in these races at Charles Town and win (a) $40 in wagering vouchers if you’re correct (b) an extra $20 Saturday afternoon if you win and are present for the announcement in the Race Book.  (Tied entrants will split winnings.) Send entries to by 8 p.m.
More Sunday night racing, later post times at ASD in 2016
Race schedule is designed to attract
more partner wagering

Assiniboia Downs has announced a 2016 live race schedule that will see some changes over the past season.  (You can download the calendar here.)

• While the same number of race days will be
held (50), there has been an increase in
Sunday night racing to take advantage of the
fact that few tracks race Sunday night. There
will now be five Sunday nights of racing.
• Opening day will be Mother’s Day with night
racing for the first time
.  Mother’s Day
brunch will still be held in addition to a buffet
during night racing.
• The first post for all night racing–Wednesday,
Friday, Saturday and Sunday–will be 7:30 p.m. rather than 7 p.m. This should attract more
wagering as Downs races extend past races held at eastern tracks
• The matinee cards with post times of 1:30 p.m. will be holiday cards:  Victoria Day,
Canada Day, August civic holiday and Labour Day.


Click for schedule
Have you booked New Year’s Eve Gala yet?

BREAKFAST SANDWICH A WINNER:  It’s not listed on the menu but it’s so delicious, players have been ordering the breakfast sandwich at the Downs anyway for $4.  It’s egg, sausage and cheese on a toasted English muffin.  The breakfast sandwich was given away free to early-morning arrivals in the Race Book on the U.S. Thanksgiving Thursday.  Players loved it so much that food and bev manager Manley Chan said he will continue to offer it for breakfast or during lunch.

Official stations of horse racing.
Click to listen

ASD players cash big at Fair Grounds, Fraser, Los Al, Balmoral
So what tracks were Assiniboia Downs players doing best at in November?  Among the top were Fair Grounds, Los Alamitos quarter horses, Fraser Downs harness and Balmoral harness. If you’re playing these tracks, congratulations!  If you’re not, you might want to take a peek at them.
Players also showed a knack for picking winners at Lone Star, Finger Lakes, Will Rogers, Golden Gate, Evangeline and Delta Downs.  Among the least profitable?  Penn National, Hawthorne, Meadowlands harness and Mahoning Valley. Are you finding these tracks tricky, too?  By being a better bettor, you not only reward yourself, you’re being a good citizen by drawing more money into the provincial economy.
Most profitable
thoroughbred tracks
Will Rogers
Fair Grounds
Least profitable
thoroughbred tracks
Penn National
Jim Rome with Shared Belief

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:  “It’s a sport we have great passion for, but it’s a sport that’s filled with some of the highest of highs and lowest of lows.”  —  sports radio talk show host Jim Rome, reflecting sadly on the death of his extremely talented 4-year-old, Shared Belief, who died after emergency surgery after a bout of colic (gut rupture). The champion male at 2 had won 10 of 12 races and might have won the Triple Crown last year had he been sound in the spring. He had been training at Golden Gate Fields for a winter campaign.

Former jockey Alyssa Selman with her dog, Gwen, on the deck of her house in Stephenfield, Manitoba, bought with the help of donors such as trainer Bob Baffert (top left, white hair) who was thanked in Tucson, Arizona, this week by ASD CEO Darren Dunn for having donated the halter of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah.  You may still buy a $45 necklace (top right)–designed especially to support Selman–at the VLT cage.  What a great gift–not only to bring luck to the wearer but to bring good karma to the giver!  (Much thanks to George Williams for the photo at Alyssa’s home.)
DUNN TO BAFFERT: “THANKS FOR THE HALTER” ASD CEO Darren Dunn had an opportunity early this week to thank personally trainer Bob Baffert for having donated Triple Crown American Pharoah’s halter to the fundraiser for crippled ASD jockey Alyssa Selman“He absolutely remembered the request by (former ASD jockey) Tim Gardiner and the donation to help (Alyssa),” Darren said.  Darren is at the annual racing symposium in Tucson, Arizona, where Baffert was honoured for his Triple Crown win. The halter fetched $7,600 US on eBay and was part of $118,000 Selman received in donations that led to her buying a house on four acres in Stephenfield, MB, 104 kilometres southwest of Winnipeg.
Read Alyssa Selman’s letter of thanks here.

ASD PLAYER IS GIVEN 80/1 CHANCE OF WINNING $800,000:   An Oakbank businessman and horseplayer at the Downs, Bill Drew, has been assigned a relatively

Bill Drew
Given a better chance than most.

good chance of winning the $800,000 first prize in the $2 million National Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas at the end of January–80/1.  If you’re in Vegas, you can actually bet on him–or others–at Treasure Island casino. Most players have odds of 175/1.  No one is below 40/1.  See the oddsmaker’s list containing Drew’s name here.

“Obviously, the oddsmaker doesn’t know I haven’t been handicapping much lately,” Drew said upon seeing his name at half the odds of most other players. He earned his way into the tournament (you can’t buy an entry) by entering an online tournament.  Drew is in the grain business and has a foal he bred on his farm. To see how he earned a berth in the tournament, go here.
Trevor Denman
Will only call
Del Mar races

SANTA BEGINS DEC. 26–WITHOUT DENMAN:  Santa Anita won’t be the same when it opens its winter/spring meet on Boxing Day.  Announcer Trevor Denman, 63, the popular “scraping the paint, moving like a winner” caller at Santa for 33 years, will be gone.  He will still be calling races at Del Mar in the summer and fall but wants to spend more time travelling and at his farm in Minnesota.  The new caller will alternate between Frank Mirahmadi, who resigned his announcing job at Oaklawn, and Michael Wrona who has been calling the races at Golden Gate Fields.  Each will announce races at Golden Gate when they aren’t calling at Santa.

RAIN DISSOLVES “I WON BIG” HOPES:  Never again.  When it rains at Gulfstream Park, Saturday’s “I won big” group will melt — away to a different track.  After a profitable baconator week the previous Saturday at Woodbine, the group played pick-4s and the Rainbow pick-6 on a sloppy surface.
That produced erratic results: A 5f race taken off the turf was won by a horse that had never ever raced on dirt; a horse that was eliminated from tickets because of his wide post position (#14) won because the outside proved to be better than the inside slop; a route race that was supposed to remain on the turf was taken off the turf late, putting the kibosh to tickets bought several races earlier.  So what will we do this Saturday?  Rain is predicted so let’s play the last six races at Aqueduct where the weather is predicted to be dry for the balance of the week.

Where are they now?
by Rob MacLennan

Second in Winnipeg Futurity, Coolidge captures Arizona Futurity

The Don Schnell barn celebrated a pair of wins last Saturday at Turf Paradise.  Idling got the job done at 1/5 but more importantly, Coolidge, second in the Winnipeg Futurity, won the

Trainer Don Schnell
Coolidge wins two stakes

$50,000 Arizona Breeders Futurity. Coolidge battled early in the race and kicked away to win by half a length over a California invader. His stablemate, Heber, who had beaten him in the Winnipeg Futurity, finished fourth. That made it back-to-back stakes wins for the son of El Mirage. He returned $6.40 to win.

His previous victory came at Albuquerque in September when he won the $55,000 Manzano Stakes for 2-year-olds and paid $15.60.  Heber finished fourth in that race, too.  What’s next for this exciting prospect from the Arnason/Schnell team?  I’m guessing the Lost in the Fog Juvenile on Boxing Day at 6 1/2f.  Other Schnell charges keep chugging along. Aware found a very tough field sprinting and didn’t show her usual grit. Idling who had won at 1/5 was claimed by Joe Toye. Look for Valedictoryaddress on Saturday to try to take her field gate to wire.
Meanwhile, Jerry Gourneau continues to be busy at both Delta Downs and the Fair Grounds. Jerry has two horses entered this week at the Fair Grounds and even though they might be in tough spots we have all seen Jerry pull off upsets.  Watch for Delta Firewater in Delta’s 8th race tomorrow.
Readers write . . .
96 starts?  What about our Master Fuzz B?
Master Fuzz B wins Wpg Sun Classic,
Sept. 30, 1990 with Frank Licata up.

(Gerry Hart photo with thanks to Bob Gates)

Ivan:  Referring to the horse with 96 starts (see story here), what about our own Master Fuzz B (1985 Ch colt, by Fuzzbuster 76 — Miss Anna B. 76 by Lurullah 57)? Between 1987 as a 2-year-old and 1994 at nine, Fuzz B. accumulated 96 starts, 11 wins, 26 seconds and 20 thirds. (Think he was a little lazy and thought second was a good enough day’s work.) He earned $90,338, no small sum in those days. He also got a first in the 1991 Inaugural Handicap, a second in the 1990 Free Press Handicap and a third in 1987 in the Edmonton Juvenile. He had a great year at eight (1993) with 15 starts, 3 wins, 4 seconds and 4 thirds. P.S. Fuzz B is still enjoying a happy retirement at 30 plus!” — Louise Townsend

Well-noted, with thanks, Louise.  His fans will be glad to hear he’s having a happy retirement.

HISTORY ON THE HOOF: The best of Bob
Did you know . . .   that three-time Gold Cup winner Balooga Bull cost only $2,000?  And that the brother of Balooga’s trainer, Ardell Sayler, once rode at the Downs?  Read about it in “Balooga Bull & Ardell Sayler:  Two giants in ASD history” here.

The Sydney Morning Herald – Williams – Tabcorp and Rupert Murdoch’s The Sun target UK gambling riches

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TwinSpires Blog – Reilly – Mongolian Saturday, Green Mask work over Sha Tin turf for HK Sprint

Vue Weekly – Priestley – Canada’s multi-million dollar horse meat industry might be on the verge of change

LA Times – Mogollon – Venezuela on a course for significant change as socialist revolution unravels

National Post – Andrew Coyne: The lucrative business of buying subsidies

NY Times – Bilefsky – Oscar Pistorius Granted Bail Ahead of Sentencing

Phil’s drink and a Flick

Second Circle

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National Post – Beijing issues first-ever smog red alert as thick shroud of pollution hangs over city

National Post – Christie Blatchford: Mike Duffy invokes battered senator defence, puts blame on Conservative

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The Globe And Mail – Ibbitson – Mike Duffy’s testimony will air last of Harper’s dirty laundry

National Post – Christie Blatchford: The gems never stop as Mike Duffy takes the witness stand

Dirty Laundry

National Post – CP – Liberals accuse Tories of ‘abuse of process,’ ask 33 hired in end-of-regime patronage binge to resign

The Globe and Mail – The dinner conundrum: 45 elegant, delicious recipes for guests with common dietary restrictions

The New Yorker – Borowitz – Trump Supporters Disappointed He Only Wants to Ban One Religion

The New Yorker – Osnos – Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban Shouldn’t Be a Surprise

Politics hates a vacuum. If it isn’t filled with hope, someone will fill it with fear.

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Losing My Religion

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National Post – Koreen – Kobe Bryant’s retirement will leave NBA without a villain — a role L.A. Lakers star embraced like no other

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Phil M Stockmen

  One Response to “2015 Starlet Weekend Preview”


    HRA 3YR PLAN 2015-2017 pg 34/49 shows a equal purse grant of 38.5% for both A track breeds 5.274 million as shown by the recent HBPA update a 52% increase, but daily purses fell to $78,554/2015 from $82,749/2014 inventive accounting with 5% reduction and $1 million in purse cuts to balance books?

    ASHA board minutes state same purse structure in 2016, while HBPA states don’t know/not confusing when the anticipated purse grant is $6.012 for 2016 a 15% increase from $5.274,however NDP budget shows only $28 million legislated racino funding for 2016 while HRA indicates 34.2 million/pg 36/49!

    ALBERTA’S anticipated unemployment rate of 6.9%/2016 to surpass national average for the first time since 1988, RBC predicts as you weigh this against Tenile’s pie in the sky $6.2 million racino shortfall!

    HRA FANTASY BUDGET shows pg. 36/49 CENTURY DOWNS $25.5 million racino revenue/550 slots for 2015/9 month projection a $10 net win/slot and $40.9 million racino revenue/650 slots/ $10.2 net win/slot, amazing since this was submitted November 2014 when Diamond Jim was in power and racino agreement ends March 31, 2016!

    HRA FANTASY BUDGET shows pg. 36/49 NORTHLANDS $28.5 million racino revenue/$8.30 net win per slot for 2015 and $29.2 million racino revenue/ $8.30 net win per slot for 2016 not attainable!

    ALBERTA NDP HOUSE LEADER MASON moves to limit controversial BILL 6 farm safety bill. He was contacted in February 2014 about Northlands Park backstretch situation and did not respond to any inquires. How predictable!

    OLG seeks bids on rebranding, modernization of 6 southwest racino casinos operations for spring 2017. Will GREAT CANADIAN/CHRIS ROBERTS? OUTBID WESTERN FAIR for new innovative ideas to increase revenue as operators get % profits, while ALBERTA find funding solutions/doubtful?

    OLG announces new horse theme product called FIRE HORSE dedicated to horse racing and includes info about horse industry and a link to online betting. What new innovative ideas does AGLC/HRA have to save horse racing in ALBERTA. None after the racino agreement expires!

    NDP FREE ” DEMOCRATIZE THE HALLS” MEETING at Edmonton Centre tomorrow at 6pm, at ROSSDALE CENTRE 10135 96 av, by telus field meet MLA DAVID SHEPHERD for his ideas on the future of hoof industry, please reply RVSP in their website, for frugal racetrackers!

    NDP $75 WINTER CELEBRATION at room 301 NORTHLANDS on Saturday, Dec 12 7 pm. Will undertaker be attending for picture with Santa and the elves and meet and greet with BRIAN MASON?

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