Feb 122016

This weekend commences with the 21st anniversary of Holy Bull suddenly pulling up in the 1995 Donn Handicap and concludes with the wussily named Family Day in some Canadian provinces, Louis Riel Day in other Canadian Provinces and Presidents Day in the US.


That leaves 14 days in the leapfrog year February and 31 days in March until the current Slot Sharing Memorandum of Agreement between the province of Alberta and the horsemen expires, yet the silence from the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta is deafening. Only sound you hear is the pay cheques being cashed.

Phil has a question:

When Phil puts in an intimation, quote, question, comment, song or a juxtaposition intending a simple yet far-fetched, obtuse signal or allusion, and none of the readers catch that signal or allusion is it still a signal or allusion and can Phil take credit for that signal or allusion.

It’s All Over Now

Never affirm, always allude: allusions are made to test the spirit and probe the heart.
Umberto Eco

If You’re Thinkin What I’m Thinkin

If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.

George S. Patton

God Is A Bullet

Louis Riel may have been monikered the father of Manitoba, but one of the most famous battles in the Northwest rebellion led by Louis Riel took place in Frog Lake Alberta. White historians call it the The Frog Lake Massacre, but that because white historians write what they call history. The southern states are being forced to dump the Confederate flag while north of the 49th one of our provinces honours the leader of the Northwest rebellion with a holiday. Time for Alberta and Saskatchewan to dump the wussy Family Day moniker given to us Albertans by a Tory Premier who was trying to make up for neglecting his drug abusing son.

Why not honour a hero to western Canadians like Louis Riel and have the Holiday that falls on the 3rd Monday of every February named after a leader with the guts to stand up to the Brits and to Ontario and Quebec. Try and find one of those today. While we’re at it we could add what really occurred during the Northwest rebellion to Canadian history and start teaching Canadian history to our schoolchildren.

Sad to realize that when the Syrian refugees apply for Canadian citizenship they’ll have to learn more Canadian history than the average University graduate retains. Take a practice test and see how much you know: citizenship.

The Canadian Encyclopedia – Louis Riel

Literary Review of Canada – Kostash – A Tale of Two Massacres

When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself.

Rebel Rebel

“Because he’s OK, I kind of feel like I won the race,” Smith said.

LA Times – Christine – Holy Bull Will Make Full Recovery : Horse racing: Mishap in Donn Handicap produced no lasting damage and a career at stud could start soon

Walk Out The Front Door

Horse Racing Nation – Holy Bull – A Retrospective

In The End

How come in former lifetimes, everybody is someone famous?

Crash Davis


Patsy West

Northlands race track has been mismanaged and ran poorly for years. And now they want to run the horsemen out of town because of their inability to get new people to the track. Their food is awful, their prices way too high, and some of their staff are rude and should not be employed in a public service sector. Tim Reid obviously has no concern about the number of jobs that are at stake here; if he did he should be going to the HPBA and finding out what can be done to help the lagging horse racing industry. Oh, never mind. That’s not his job. I hope our government pulls the slots if horse racing goes. But then again maybe that’s what Reid wants.

Barnes article

“In a meeting with staff last night, they told them that the barns would be torn down right after Derby Day,” one source said in an email Thursday. “They are even saying that they would make this the biggest and best Derby Day ever because it will be the last one.”

According to a Northlands executive, that was merely one interpretation of what was presented by Reid during two information sessions at Expo Centre.

“We rolled out the plan,” said Northlands vice-president Cathy Kiss. “We did not conclusively say that we’re out of horse racing or that we’re tearing down the barns. There was no confirmation of that.”

But it is most certainly an option.

“Absolutely. That has been stated before,” said Kiss, who added that the Vision 2020 plan will be unveiled to the public and media next week, most likely on Wednesday.

Edmonton Journal – Dan Barnes: It’s down to the wire for horse racing at Edmonton Northlands

Global News – Ramsay – Two-level ice facility could be the future of Rexall Place

Phil has a question:

Is that the fat lady I spy warming up behind the toteboard.

World Wide Words –  It ain’t over till the fat lady sings

Quote Investigator – It Ain’t Over Til The Fat Lady Sings

This Mess We’re In

Phil’s reprising a reprising:

Racing in Alberta has gone downhill since Stampede Park lost their days. Northlands is a joke right down from Management to their inept racing secretary to their horrible race caller. I used to own horses there a decade ago and I will not be back.

Paulick Report – Canada: Horse Racing Facing Uncertain Future In Alberta

Northlands Park Tim Reid can posture about the monies coming to Northlands Park from horse racing, but is it not time for Northlands Park to start listening to the comments and improve the professionalism of their horse racing operation.

Phil’s reprising his post from last week.

Global News Edmonton – Future of Horse Racing Up In The Air In Alberta

Phil has a question:

How did Rick LeLacheur and Shirley McClellan get horse racing in Alberta into the mess it is in.

Tom Coughlin had the decency to resign. Why don’t Shirley McClellan and Rick LeLacheur have a similar common decency and resign for the benefit of the thoroughbred industry in the province of Alberta.

Why doesn’t the media interview a knowledgeable thoroughbred trainer or owner who doesn’t sing from the prescribed Captain and Tennille songbook.

Kiss Off

Phil’s reprising a reprising of a couple of quotes from Sitting Bull and JFK the President not the stallion who’s on his way to Argentina.

sitting bull

Let us put our minds together and see what life we can make for our children.
Sitting Bull

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
John F. Kennedy

When written in Chinese, the word ‘crisis’ is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity.
John F. Kennedy

Not Fade Away

NY Times – Atieff – What Happened to the Great Urban Design Projects?

TwinSpires Blog – Scully – Remembering the 2004 Southwest: Smarty party begins in Arkansas 

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – MacDonald – Still lithe at 15, Smarty Jones is all set for his second chance in Kentucky

You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.
Abraham Lincoln

Not Fade Away

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Ross – What we know about cobalt – and, worryingly, what we don’t

Racing Post – Mottershead – The scourge that can only lead to misery

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way — in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.

Charles Dickens

Hold On

NY Times – Rohan – Mets Reliever Jenrry Mejia Permanently Barred From Major League Baseball

Not If You Were The Last Junkie on Earth

Bloodhorse – Contreras Suspended for Oxycodone Use

No Children

Halvey on Horseracing – Gary Contessa

On The Way Home

The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence; it is to act with yesterday’s logic.

Peter Drucker

FiveThirtyEight – Libresco – Your Valentine Is More Interested In Dinner And A Card Than Anything Else

Whole Lotta Love


National Post – Kryk – Denver Broncos win 2016 Super Bowl over Carolina Panthers to (maybe) send Peyton Manning out on top

LA Times – Farmer – Peyton Manning caps his career with second Super Bowl title, and his mom says it’s time to retire

ESPN – Legwold – Peyton Manning to mull future later; ‘priorities’ take precedence

The Globe and Mail – Kelly: Manning caps Hall of Fame career with sloppy Super Bowl win

Too many pieces of music finish too long after the end.
Igor Stravinsky

Horse Race Insider – Pricci – Not So Super

I am Superman

NY Times – Mather – Who’s Favored to Win the Super Bowl Next Year? Them Again

Horse Race Insider – Jicha – Super Saturdays wouldn’t be hurt if some stakes were spread out

Logical Song

Burger King hot dogs

Nation’s Restaurant News – Thorn – Burger King to introduce hot dogs

NY Times – Swarns, Eveleigh and Cave – Unpublished Black History

Gimme Sympathy

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Roberts and Taylor – Racecourses that played a vital role during the Great War

One man scorned and covered with scars still strove with his last ounce of courage to reach the unreachable stars; and the world will be better for this.
Miguel de Cervantes

Horse Race Insider -Pricci – Tampa Bay Downs in Saturday Spotlight


Tampa Bay Downs may be in the Saturday spotlight, but check out the Saturday card at Santa Anita Park.

Best card that Phil’s seen at Santa Anita this meet.


Saturday, February 13, 2016

Pick 6    $14,927.00
Delta Downs
Super High Five     $1,663.00
Fair Grounds
Pick 5 Jackpot    $24,788.00
Golden Gate Fields
Pick 6 Jackpot    $11,573.00
Super High Five     $3,746.00
Gulfstream Park
Pick 6 Jackpot    $852,101.00
Pick 5    $75,780.00
Hialeah Park
Pick 6 Jackpot    $123,428.00
Laurel Park
Pick 6 Jackpot    $5,473.00
Pick 5    $3,246.00
Oaklawn Park
Classix    $7,960.00
Sam Houston Race Park
Z-5 Super Hi-5     $948.00
Santa Anita Park
Super High Five     $22,435.00
Tampa Bay Downs
Pick 5    $17,413.00
Turfway Park
Super High Five     $733.00

Guaranteed Pools

Equibase Carryovers and Guaranteed Pools

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – McQueen – Children of Secretariat: the flying filly responsible for Storm Cat

Racehorse Owners Association – Hood – Racing needs to unite

Bloodhorse – Backpedaling on Progress – by Eric Mitchell

Sometime Around Midnight

Bloodhorse – LaMarra – Industry Makes Its Case Against Decoupling

Miami – Herald – Klas and Wallace – Florida House committee advances bill to expand casino games

Bloodhorse – LaMarra – WV Bill Would Decouple Racing and Gaming

NY Times – Watch the ‘Frontline’ and Times Documentary on Fantasy Sports and Online Gambling

NY Times – Sandomir – DraftKings-ESPN Deal Ends

North South Brunswick – Sentinel – Court date set for sports betting appeal

We will burn that bridge when we come to it.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

DRF – Fortuna – Four rich stakes highlight Festival Preview Day

Western Blood

This Weekend’s Stake Races

Feb 13
Broadway Stake $100,000 4&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 6f Dirt
Haynesfield Stake $100,000 4&up State/Prov 8.5f Dirt
Golden Gate Fields
El Camino Real Derby GIII $200,000 3yo 9f AW
Gulfstream Park
Royal Delta Stake GII $200,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Dirt
Sam Houston
Houston Distaff $50,000 4&up Fillies & Mares State/Prov 8.5f Turf
Houston Turf Stake $50,000 4&up State/Prov 8.5f Turf
Sam Houston Sprint Cup $50,000 4&up 6f Dirt
Laurel Park
Barbara Fritchie Stake GII $300,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 7f Dirt
John B. Campbell Stake $75,000 4&up 9f Dirt
Maryland Racing Media Stake $75,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Dirt
Oaklawn Park
Essex Handicap (Listed) $100,000 4&up 8.5f Dirt
Santa Anita Park
Arcadia Stake GII $200,000 4&up 8f Turf
Santa Maria Stake GII $200,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Dirt
Sunland Park
Budweiser Handicap $75,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Tampa Bay Downs
Lambholm South Endeavour Stake GIII $150,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Turf
Sam F. Davis Stake GIII $250,000 3yo 8.5f Dirt
Suncoast Stake $100,000 3yo Fillies 8.32f Dirt
Tampa Bay Stake GIII $150,000 4&up 8.5f Turf
Cincinnati Trophy Stake $50,000 3yo Fillies 6.5f AW
Turf Paradise
Phoenix Gold Cup $75,000 4&up 6f Dirt
Sun City Handicap $35,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8f Turf
Turf Paradise Handicap $35,000 4&up 8.5f Turf

Feb 14
Rego Park Stake $125,000 3yo State/Prov 6f Dirt
Oaklawn Park
Bayakoa Stake GIII $100,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8.5f Dirt
Sunland Park
El Diario Handicap $75,000 3&up Fillies & Mares 6.5f Dirt

Feb 15
Hollie Hughes Handicap $100,000 4&up State/Prov 6f Dirt
Golden Gate Fields
Lost in the Fog $50,000 4&up 6f AW
Laurel Park
General George Stake GIII $250,000 4&up 7f Dirt
Miracle Wood Stake $75,000 3yo 8f Dirt
Wide Country Stake (Listed) $75,000 3yo Fillies 7f Dirt
Oaklawn Park
Southwest Stake GIII $500,000 3yo 8.5f Dirt
Santa Anita Park
San Vicente Stake GII $200,000 3yo 7f Dirt

Feb 20
Franklin Square Stake $125,000 3yo Fillies State/Prov 6f Dirt
Fair Grounds
Daisy Devine Stake $60,000 4&up Fillies & Mares abt 8.5f Turf
Duncan F. Kenner Stake $60,000 3&up 6f Dirt
Fair Grounds Handicap GIII $125,000 4&up abt 9f Turf
Mineshaft Handicap GIII $125,000 4&up 8.5f Dirt
TwinSpires.com Rachel Alexandra Stake GII $200,000 3yo Fillies 8.5f Dirt
Veterans Ford Risen Star Stake GII $400,000 3yo 8.5f Dirt
Gulfstream Park
Melody of Colors $75,000 3yo Fillies 5f Turf
Sam Houston
Jim’s Orbit Stake $75,000 3yo Colts & Geldings State/Prov 6f Dirt
Two Altazano Stake $75,000 3yo Fillies State/Prov 6f Dirt
Oaklawn Park
Spring Fever Stake $100,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 5.5f Dirt
Santa Anita Park
Buena Vista Stake GII $200,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 8f Turf
Sunland Park
Island Fashion Stake $75,000 3yo Fillies 8f Dirt
Mine That Bird Derby $100,000 3yo 8.5f Dirt
Tampa Bay Downs
Minaret Stake $50,000 4&up Fillies & Mares 6f Dirt
Pelican Stake $100,000 4&up 6f Dirt
Turf Paradise
Arizona Oaks $35,000 3yo Fillies 8f Dirt
Turf Paradise Derby $75,000 3yo 8.5f Dirt

TwinSpires Blog – Reilly – Will the Donn regain its status as a Dubai World Cup pointer?

TwinSpires – Blog – Powell – Handicapping Insights – Mshawish establishes himself as a serious Dubai World Cup contender in Donn; Songbird returns a brilliant winner

If the legends fall silent, who will teach the children of our ways?

Chief Dan George

Lady and the Track – Hammer – South Florida SPCA Horse Rescue’s “A Day At The Races”

2016 Triple Crown Early Nominations

Triple Crown Nominees Past Performances

Sympathy For The Devil

 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
El Camino Real Derby Golden Gate Fields Feb 13, 2016 10-4-2-1
Southwest Oaklawn Park Feb 15, 2016 10-4-2-1
Risen Star Fair Grounds Feb 20, 2016 50-20-10-5
Fountain of Youth Gulfstream Park Feb 27, 2016 50-20-10-5
Gotham Aqueduct Mar 5, 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
Louisiana Derby Fair Grounds Mar 26, 2016 100-40-20-10
Florida Derby Gulfstream Park 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

LA Times – Cherwa – Desormeaux brothers’ Derby dream, far from rural roots, may be nearing fruition

Acadian Driftwood

Like Phil need an excuse.

Bloodhorse – East Vs. West in Second Derby Future Wager

TwinSpires Blog – Mohaymen, Nyquist top individuals; ‘all others’ the early odds-on choice in KDFW 2

Bloodhorse – Hingin with Haskin – How About a Trainer Derby Future Wager?

Bloodhorse – Hangin With Haskin – Money to ‘Bern‘ in Derby Future Wager

Somewhere Down The Crazy River

Bloodhorse – Haskin – Derby Dozen – February 9, 2016 – Presented by Shadwell Farm

Horse Racing Nation – Kentucky Derby 2016 Contenders

TwinSpires Blog – Scully – Kentucky Derby Report (2/10): Baffert remains in spotlight with Mor Spirit 


DRF – Privman – Derby Watch: Nyquist already ahead of the game


DRF -Jerardi: Nyquist’s numbers say it could be a rocky season

Head On

DRF – Privman – Kentucky Derby: Who’s hot, who’s not for Feb. 10

Bloodhorse – America’s Best Racing – Making the Grade: Mor Spirit

Lady and the Track – Macatangay – 2016 Kentucky Derby Top 10: Reinier’s Picks

Lady and the Track – Laughter – Kentucky Derby Top 10: Casey’s Picks

Lady and the Track – Mor Spirit Keeps Impressing on Road to Kentucky Derby 

TwinSpires Blog – Top three from California Derby return, Mr. Coker to make stakes debut in El Camino Real Derby

Bloodhorse – Shinar – ‘Conversation’ Back in NorCal for El Camino

Bloodhorse – Angst – Motion, Team Valor Collaborate with Kasseopia

Lady and the Track – Macatangay – Team Valor Likes Kasseopia in El Camino Real Derby

Louisville Courier-Journal – Large field signs up for El Camino Real Derby

Bloodhorse – Curry – Making the Grade: Mohaymen

Bloodhorse – Mohaymen Returns to Work Tab at Palm Meadows

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – Course charted for Ky. Derby hopeful Mohaymen

TwinSpires Blog – McLaughlin discusses plans for Mohaymen, Lady Shipman & Frosted


Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – Pimlico installing upgrades for Preakness

Bloodhorse – WinStar Derby Challenge Begins Feb. 12

Bloodhorse – Novak – Discreetness, Collected Face Off in Southwest

TwinSpires Blog – Whitmore leads local workers for Southwest

Bloodhorse – Whitmore Gets Green Light for Southwest

Bloodhorse – Bullet Work for Lecomte Runner-Up Tom’s Ready

TwinSpires Blog – Tom’s Ready, Mo Tom work five furlongs for TwinSpires.com Risen Star

TwinSpires Blog – Synchrony, Bird of Trey put in final major Southwest moves

Bloodhorse – Balan – Nyquist Begins 2016 Campaign in San Vicente

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – O’Neill sees what he wants in Nyquist’s work

TwinSpires Blog – Nyquist skates through final work for San Vicente

Bloodhorse – Nyquist Speedy in Final Work for San Vicente

In formal logic, a contradiction is the signal of defeat, but in the evolution of real knowledge it marks the first step in progress toward a victory.
Alfred North Whitehead

TwinSpires Blog – Laoban, Bistraya added to TwinSpires.com Risen Star

Bloodhorse – Airoforce Ready for 2016 Debut in Risen Star

TwinSpires Blog – Airoforce ready for takeoff in Risen Star

DRF – Hersh – Entry rule won’t affect Risen Star lineup

White Rabbit

Bloodhorse – Johnson – Pletcher Sends Two for Sam F. Davis

Riversedge Racing Stables, Ltd.’s Awesome Slate takes a step up to graded company in the Sam F. Davis Stakes GIII $250,000 going 1 1/16 miles on the Tampa Bay dirt Saturday February 13, 2016. Julian R Leparoux will take over in the saddle for conditioner Brian A Lynch.

Bloodhorse – Angst – Rafting Set for 2016 Debut in Sam F. Davis

Bloodhorse – McCoy – Casse Cues Up Sam F. Davis Wildcard

TwinSpires Blog – Hanson – KDFW entry Gettysburg faces six in Sam F. Davis

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – Pletcher Derby hopefuls head Tampa’s Sam Davis

DRF – Fortune – Morning Fire gets two-turn test in Sam F. Davis Stakes

Phil has a question:

If the El Camino Rey at Golden Gate is worth points on the Kentucky Derby trail shouldn’t the Sam F. Davis also be worth points.

Twinspires Blog – Scully – Remembering the 1997 San Vicente – the beginning of a terrific rivalry 

Bloodhorse – Angst – Saratoga Mischief to Return in Capossela

2016 Road to the Kentucky Oaks

Race    Track    Date      Points
Rachel Alexandra Fair Grounds Feb 20, 2016 50-20-10-5
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
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
Fair Grounds Oaks Fair Grounds Mar 26, 2016 100-40-20-10
Bourbonette Oaks Turfway Park Apr 2, 2016 50-20-10-5
Gulfstream Park Oaks Gulfstream Park 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

Lady and the Track – Hammer – Songbird Continues Down Oaks Trail After Impressive Las Virgenes Win

Lady and the Track – Laughter – Songbird Continues Toward Kentucky Oaks with Perfect Record

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – No. 2 Oaks horse may not seek race vs. Songbird

TwinSpires Blog – TURF TALK: Effusive Praise for Songbird & Mardi Gras traditions 

Bloodhorse – Mucciolo – Songbird highlights a stakes-packed weekend; inside posts don’t fare well on Santa Anita main track

My Back Pages

From the Derby Bar and Grill Newsletter





The sale will be conducted on Saturday, March 26th and the Preview will be held at Hastings Racecourse on Saturday, March 19th, with the times still to be determined. For those wishing to nominate horses to the sale the closing date will be Tuesday, March 1st. The information regarding entering a horse, terms and conditions of the sale and buyer registration forms will all be available on the sales website: hastingshorsesale.com or contact Mike Heads at: 604-309-6509.


Hastings News by Greg Douglas

TwinSpires Blog – Mucciolo – Gander winner Governor Malibu among horses to watch from three-day race week at Aqueduct

This is Horse Racing – Brandon Valvo’s Horse Who Changed Everything

Bloodhorse – America’s best Racing – Pedulla – Legends: Rachel Alexandra, Filly for the Ages

TwinSpires Blog – Jockey Dominguez made eligible for Hall of Fame ballot

The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down

Hastings Paddock Sale - March 26, 2016


The sale will be conducted on Saturday, March 26th and the Preview will be held at Hastings Racecourse on Saturday, March 19th, with the times still to be determined. For those wishing to nominate horses to the sale the closing date will be Tuesday, March 1st. The information regarding entering a horse, terms and conditions of the sale and buyer registration forms will all be available on the sales website: hastingshorsesale.com or contact Mike Heads at: 604-309-6509.

FiveThirtyEight – Libresco – The Cheapskate’s Guide To Buying Flowers For Valentine’s Day

Bloodhorse – Higgins Rides First Winner at Santa Anita

Bloodhorse – By Milton C. Toby – Taking Shergar

Bloodhorse – Evans, Fitzgerald to Audition at Santa Anita


TwinSpires Blog – Reilly – Dubai Carnival beads: Frosted’s the icing on Godolphin cake

Bloodhorse – Willis to Chair New Mexico Racing Commission

Bloodhorse – Keeping Pace – Angst – Dennis Drazin on One That Got Away


Thoroughbred Internet – Medaglia going for gold

Bloodhorse – LaMarra – Two Prominent NYRA Employees Leaving Posts

Phil has a question:

When the Alberta NDP government finally gets around to sweeping Shirley McClellan and Rick LeLacheur from their positions at Horse Racing Alberta will the Undertaker be around long enough to post that Two HRA position holders are leaving their posts.

Hell hath no fury like a bureaucrat scorned.
Milton Friedman

Crime of the Century


Bloodhorse – Angst – Is the Pari-Mutuel Price Right

2015 Sovereign Award Finalists

Bloodhorse – Minnesota Offers Breeding, Sale Incentives

Bloodhorse – Kentucky Advances Equine Tax Break Bill

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

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwel – Royal Delta draws six, including turf mare Sandiva, while Santa Maria attracts eight

Bloodhorse – Sandiva Tries Dirt in Royal Delta

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – Sandiva trying to follow Mshawish’s path to graded victory on dirt

Bloodhorse – Balan – Birdatthewire Heads Santa Maria Field

TwinSpires Blog – Hanson – Champion turf mare Tepin returns to action in Endeavour

Bloodhorse – Novak – Tepin Set for Season Debut in Endeavour

Lady and the Track – Macatangay – Tepin Back Against Own Gender in Endeavour

When You Were Young 

DRF – Simon – Owners benefit from increased purses in 2015

Thoroughbred owners in Alberta did not benefit from higher purses in Alberta in 2015, but were required to dig deeper into their pockets at a time when the economy was souring. You may ask yourself why. You should be asking Shirley McClellan the CEO of Horse Racing Alberta and Rick LeLacheur the Chair of Horse Racing Alberta why they removed 5% of the allocation from the “A” track thoroughbreds in Alberta and gave it to the jiggies and bush tracks when the thoroughbreds account for 75% of the total handle.

As Phil has repeated ad infinitum the thoroughbred owners in the province of Alberta dip into their own resources to the tune of about $17,000.00 per horse they race per year. Rather than reward the thoroughbred owners for their support and contribution to the industry Horse Racing Alberta and Northlands Park take turns jabbing the sharp pointy stick in their eyes with one of the cruelest jabs being as HPBA Alberta executive Director Mat Monaco pointed out:

A financial policy change instituted by HRA for 2015 resulted in a decrease of the percentage allocation to “A” Thoroughbred Horsemen from 43.5% to 38.5% of the total purse grant. The Standardbred breed as well as Community racing were the recipients of the 5% lost by this Association. Had we received the same percentage allocation as had been received from Day 1 of HRA’s existence, the additional $700,000 would have translated into a 10 – 15% increase in overnite payments.

Phil’s reprising:

Phil’s Top Ten List

Ways to improve Thoroughbred Racing in the province of Alberta.

10. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
9. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
8. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
7. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
6. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta
5. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
4. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
3. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
2, Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
and Phil’s No. 1 way to improve thoroughbred racing in the province of Alberta
1. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.


Phil’s Top Ten List

Ways to instill optimism in the Thoroughbred Racing industry in the province of Alberta.

10. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
9. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
8. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
7. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
6. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta
5. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
4. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
3. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
2, Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
and Phil’s No. 1 way to instill optimism in the Thoroughbred Racing industry in the province of Alberta
1. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.

Phil’s Top Ten List

Ways for the Alberta NDP Government to start sweeping the Tory cronies out in the province of Alberta.

10. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
9. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
8. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
7. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
6. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta
5. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
4. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
3. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
2, Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.
and Phil’s No. 1 way for the Alberta NDP Government to start sweeping the Tory cronies out in the province of Alberta.
1. Replace the Chair and CEO of Horse Racing Alberta.

Phil has a suggestion:

Thoroughbred owners and participants, get off your asses and start taking some action before Shirley and her jiggie buddies rule the roost in this province.

T.L.C.S. (Thoroughbred Lasting Careers Society)

The organizational meeting of the T.L.C.S. (Thoroughbred Lasting Careers Society) took place on Saturday, January 16 the Sheraton, Red Deer. Make sure to like us on Facebook to follow the latest news of the society.

The goals of this non-profit society are :

  • To provide funding for the aftercare, rehabilitation and retraining of off-the-track Thoroughbreds in Alberta.
  • To assist and ensure that off-the-track Thoroughbreds are provided with a second career after leaving the racetrack.
  • To allow for participation in The Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Incentive Program (T.I.P.)
  • To promote the unique qualities of the Thoroughbred horse breed.

Click here to download>>T.L.C.S. Bylaws

Membership in the society is open to any person residing in Alberta over the age of 18 years, for a fee of $10.00. Those under 18 may become a member for $5.00. Cheques for membership should be made out to CTHS Alberta and forwarded to TLCS care of the CTHS Alberta Division, Unit 218, 1935 – 32nd Avenue, Calgary, Alberta T2E 7C8.

Bloodhorse – Lewyn – Uncle Mo Yearlings in Demand at Inglis

Bloodhorse – Hot City Girl Carries Legacy Into Fritchie

DRF – Dunleavy – Lady Sabelia, Hot City Girl will battle in Barbara Fritchie

DRF – Dunleavy – Lady Sabelia’s connections hope history repeats itself in Fritchie

Fancy Annie – Woodbine Oaks Syndicate Opportunity

A syndicate is being put together to acquire a 3 year old Canadian Bred colt and a 3 year old Canadian Bred filly that will be eligible for the Queens Plate and Woodbine Oaks.
The ultimate goal is to run in the Plate, Manitoba Derby, Canadian Derby, and BC Derby for the colt. With the filly the goal will be the Oaks in all 4 provinces. A fantastic trip for everyone involved and a story to remember and retell.
The syndicate has acquired a 3 year old filly that is currently in training Fancy Annie, a half sister to Fiftyshadeslighter by Bold N Flashy. The syndicate also acquired a 2 year colt by Milwaukee Brew.

Fancy Annie is a 3 year old Ontario Bred and Sired filly by Bold N Flashy out of the Artax mare Art of Desire. Fancy Annie is eligible for the highly lucrative bonus program in Ontario. The Ontario bred and sired program provides a bonus on purse money for Ontario Sired and Bred horses that can reach as high as 60%.

The ultimate goal for 2016 is to run in the $500,000 Canadian Oaks at Woodbine in June, the $75,000 Canadian Oaks in Northlands Park in August, the $100,000 BC Oaks in Hastings Park in September and the $100,000 Grade III Ballerina at Hastings Park in October. Fancy Annie is eligible for every major stake race for  3 year and up horses in Canada except races restricted to colts and geldings and provincial bred horses in BC, Manitoba and Alberta.

The secondary goal is to build interest in thoroughbred racing, introduce new fans and owners to the game and have some fun.

If you require any other information please contact us at cjracingstable@live.ca
Thank you for your time and your interest.

Enjoy a winning day at the track.

Bloodhorse – Team Valor Buys Half Sister to Songbird


Omega Code


Bloodhorse – Mitchell – Fasig-Tipton Winter Mixed Sale Posts Declines

DRF – Nevills – Fasig-Tipton February: Stronger second session, but overall declines

Bloodhorse – Ron Mitchell – Demand for Quality at F-T Winter Mixed Sale

Bloodhorse – Ron Mitchell – Flashy American, Funfair Light Up Bid Board

DRF – Russo – Fasig-Tipton Kentucky: Scat Daddy in demand at sale

Bloodhorse – Mare In Foal to Scat Daddy Brings $210,000


Orientate – Mir Cat by Tale Of The Cat

2016 FEE: $2,000 ($200 booking fee, balance due live foal).


Stone Ranches Ltd.

Madden, Alberta, Canada

Tina & Gerald Stone at 403-946-5703 or by email at stnranch@airenet.com

Racing Post – MacDonald – Deal lures breeders to American Pharoah

Giving horseplayers a voice.

Horseplayers Association of North America January February 2016 Issue

Bloodhorse – Old Fashioned to Stand in South Korea


  By Stravinsky-A world leader for individual winners. 100 million in progeny earnings worldwide
QAldebaran Light is the dam of Balmont and Eskendereya
Eskendereya was the favourite for the 2010 Kentucky Derby but scratched
due to injury (Stands for $17,500.00)
Balmont is a multiple Group 1 and 2 winner
Multiple Group 1, 2 and 3 progeny winners
Sire of Balmont Girl, Balmont Mast and Belle La vie
$1,086,917.00 worldwide progeny earnings in 2015 with 45 starters at $24,154/starter
Balmont was one of the fastest juveniles of his year, winning both the Middle Park and Gimcrack
while setting a track record in the process.
Balmont stems from one of the very best stallion families in the stud book that of Danehill,
Machiavellian, Arctic Tern, Cannonade, Burooj, Stephan’s Odyssey and Northern Dancer

Stravinsky-Aldebaran Light by Seattle Slew


Property of Dan Byrne
Standing at Jug Handle Ranch
Inquiries to: Dan Byrne

Phone (403) 601-0432 jughandleranch@yahoo.ca.
Box 1380, Nanton, Alberta T0L 1R0

Please visit website for video: jughandleranch.ca

Racing Post – Balmont

Taylor Made – Fernando – Eskendereya pedigree constructed for classics

Bloodhorse – Stallion Eskendereya Sold to Japan

TwinSpires Blog – Hanson – Leigh Court returns to winner’s circle in Mardi Gras

Bloodhorse – Los Alamitos Announces Spring Stakes Schedule


Bloodhorse – Ron Mitchell – 64 Equine Herpesvirus Positives at Sunland

Bloodhorse – Delta Downs Bans New Mexico, Arizona Horses

DRF – Hegarty – Sunland Park continues to battle equine herpesvirus

DRF – Rampellini – Sunland: Additional cases of equine herpesvirus

ESPN – DRF – Hegarty – Turf Paradise to lift quarantine; Sunland battle continues

Hard Sun

On January 28, 2016 Phil M Stockmen sent the following e-mail to Rick LeLacheur, the Chair of Horse Racing Alberta and to Shirley McClellan the CEO of Horse Racing Alberta:

Are either of you aware that there are a number of cases of Equine Herpesvirus in the southern USA.

Oaklawn Bans Horses From New Mexico, Arizona


What is Horse Racing Alberta going to do to protect the Alberta horse population when horses start to ship back to Alberta from Arizona

On Friday February 5, 2016 6:37 AM Phil M Stockmen sent the following e-mail to Rick leLacheur, the Chair of Horse Racing Alberta and to Shirley McClellan the CEO of Horse Racing Alberta:

On January 28th I sent an e-mail requesting information on Horse Racing Alberta’s plans for protecting the Alberta thoroughbred population from Equine Herpesvirus.

To date, as usual, I have not received a response to a legitimate concern from either of you.

The problem is getting worse as recently reported in Bloodhorse.


If you will not respond to questions about legitimate concerns for horse safety please resign and let someone more concerned take over.

On Friday February 5, 2016 15:00 the following was posted on the Horse Racing Alberta website.

Equine Herpes Virus – 1 (EHV-1) Neurological Disease

Cases of the EHV-1 Neurological Disease have been confirmed in the USA

Currently Turf Paradise is under quarantine to address the issue. Northlands Park and Rocky Mountain Turf Club have implemented restrictions on horses coming to Alberta from USA racetracks and training centres.

These horses must have:

  • a veterinary certificate stating that they were examined by a veterinarian
  • that the horse is healthy with a normal temperature
  • that the horse has not been in contact with any sick or potentially herpes positive or suspicious horses within the previous 21 days
  • the horse has been vaccinated with a flu-rhino vaccine within the last 6 weeks.

This examination must be done within 72 hours of departure for Northlands Park or Rocky Mountain Turf Club. These horses will be examined by a veterinarian before entry to Northlands Park or Rocky Mountain Turf Club.

The Alberta horse racing industry is reminded that all horses must show a certificate of a clean bill of health and that there are horse entry protocols in place at all Alberta Racetracks.

The Alberta Horse Racing and Breeding Industry will be monitoring this issue on a daily basis in best interest of our equine athletes.

Phil has a question:

Do you think that Horse Racing Alberta would have done anything to protect the thoroughbred race horses in this province from the EHV-1 virus if Phil hadn’t sent 2 e-mails to Rick LeLacheur, the Chair of Horse Racing Alberta and to Shirley McClellan the CEO of Horse Racing Alberta that were cc’d to the Minister of Finance.

A veterinary certificate may clear the horses, but what is being done to ensure that the trailers and all the equipment that may have been exposed to the virus will not be bringing the virus into this province.

Bloodhorse – Balan – Young Turf Trio Tries Obviously in Arcadia

Bloodhorse – Older Turf Horses Contest Tampa Bay Stakes

DRF – Dunleavy – Page McKenney the one to beat if connections opt for John B. Campbell

Hard Sun

You’ll LOVE tonight’s buffet with Valentine’s touches

Certified Angus prime rib, pasta station, many other entrees, side dishes, salad bar, soup, red velvet cake, self-serve ice cream and more — with Valentine’s touches and all served in a Valentine’s-enhanced decor. All you can eat $26.95.  Reserve at 204-885-3330.
Bullet briefs . . .
• Friday cash bonuses — a great kickoff to weekend play.  Getting yours?
• Challenge yourself on Riel Day:  Enter “bet half your bankroll” tourney
• Player turns $7.60 into $22,000 in Tampa pick-5.  How did he do it?
• Songbird crushes foes but highly unlikely to contest Kentucky Derby       
• Dunn volunteers elbow grease as ASD quietly donates to community
• What ASD horse raced eight times in 42 days, winning seven? See Bob
• Betting in the U.S. with HPI? After 2 weeks, some tracks OK, others not
and at least $1,000 in prize money are at stake
in Monday’s Up the Ante tourney. Have you signed up?

Rules: Bet at least half your bankroll on each of six plays at any track from noon to 4:30 p.m.

Entry fee:  $50
Bankroll:  $100
Prize:  $1,000 or more. Winner take all.
Sign up:  By 9 p.m. Sunday for $50.  By noon Monday for $75.  Sign up at the track, at an OTB or by phone (using your credit card) now at 204-885-3330 ext. 225.
All entrants will receive a coupon for a complimentary lunch special. Can you think of a better way to have fun on the Louis Riel holiday?


Click for schedule
Enjoy red velvet (Valentine’s) cake at tonight’s buffet

PREDICT THE FUTURE AND CASH BIG: It’s that time again–Kentucky Derby future pool time.  You have the next three days–Friday to Sunday–to mull over the 3-year-olds eligible to enter the Kentucky Derby and predict a winner.  And play exactors.  Gives you a chance to lock in a longshot that may be favoured or go off at lower odds in the Derby.

You have 23 horses and the field (all others) to choose from.  See list here.  Top three:
4/5 — all others
12/1Nyquist (winner of Breeders’ Cup Juvenile)
My “good value” pick: 30/1 Danzing Candy — off most bettors’ radar but lodged an impressive win, with Equibase speed of 108, last weekend in an allowance/optional claimer.  Watch out!

Rob MacLennan’s value plays: Zulu and Brody’s Cause at 30/1 as well.

Official stations of horse racing.
Click to listen

Songbird airs in Las Virgenes
But Rob predicts there’s “zero chance” she’ll run in Derby
Eight Belles behind Big Brown in 2008 KY Derby. Songbird is faster.

She did what was expected of her — dominating and crushing a field of fillies in the grade 2 Las Virgenes Stakes at Santa Anita last Saturday, paying $2.10 across the board. But, despite the ease of Songbird’s win and despite the fact she’s shown herself to be faster than any 3-year-old colt, ASD handicapper Rob MacLennan predicts there’s “zero chance” she’ll run in the Kentucky Derby to set herself up as possibly the first filly to win the Triple Crown.  Why is he so sure?

Eight Belles (filly who broke down after the 2008 Kentucky Derby) and the fact she’s not nominated and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer isn’t the kind of guy to change his mind. And I think if she keeps killing them she might try the boys in the summer. Look at Ruffian’s 3-year-old campaign:  Win the big 3-year-old filly races and then try the boys. Same with a lot of the dominant fillies over the years.”
What do you think?  To be sure, Songbird’s owners, Fox Hill Farms, are likely still haunted by the breakdown of their filly, Eight Belles, right after her racing in the 2008 Kentucky Derby.  (Note that Songbird is faster than Eight Belles was, with 112 Equibase speed compared to Eight Belles’ 108.)
2008 Kentucky Derby:
1st — Big Brown
2nd — Eight Belles (owned by Songbird’s owners; broke down after the Derby)
And Songbird owner Rick Porter had this to say after the Las Virgenes Saturday:  “I’ve thought about it a lot.  It would be nice to win the Kentucky Derby. I’d like to do it with a 3-year-old colt, if I can get one.”  And, he added: “I’d have to run against the boys in the Santa Anita Derby (to acquire points to qualify for the Kentucky Derby). She’s too young. It’s 20 horses in the (Kentucky Derby).”
So, without a change of heart by the owners expect Songbird to race in the Santa Anita Oaks–the filly equivalent of the Santa Anita Derby–in April then in the Kentucky Oaks in May and on to the Mother Goose and Alabama.
TRAINER ANDERSON WINS “PREDICT TIME” CONTEST:  Congrats to longtime ASD trainer Carl Anderson who picked up $50 in betting vouchers Saturday for being closest to predicting Songbird’s time in the one-mile Las Virgenes Stakes at Santa Anita.  She ran the one-mile race in 1:36.84.  Carl predicted 1:36.40.  Honourable mention goes to horseplayer George Moehring whose 1:36.85 was 1/100th shy of the correct time.  Problem was, the rules required the winning entry not to be OVER the correct time.
*       *       *
Attention now turns to the boys
Final two 10-point Derby preps go Saturday and Monday
BC Juv winner Nyquist to race in San Vicente Monday
With seemingly little hope that Songbird will race in the Kentucky Derby, attention turns to what appears to be a pretty ordinary bunch of 3-year-old colts who will be making a bid to get to the Big Dance.  Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Nyquist, whose Equibase speed (109) is closest to Songbird’s 112, is expected to launch his 2016 campaign this holiday Monday in the San Vicente Stakes at Santa Anita on his way to a likely appearance in the Santa Anita Derby in April.  Note the final two 10-point Derby preps this Saturday and Monday:


QUOTE OF THE WEEK:  “Colts frequently catch up to precocious fillies by the spring of their 3-year-old seasons but Songbird appears to have a formidable head start.” Steven Crist, DRF
I Love You Honey
(An aptly-named $31 horse that capped Anton’s big win at Tampa)
Player wins $22,000 for $7.60 in Tampa pick-5.  How he did it:
As shown week after week with the “I won big” group, the pick-5 at Tampa Bay is a very elusive pool to catch.  Week after week it isn’t won.  Last Saturday’s pool was carried over into Sunday.  And that’s when there was a big cheer from this corner when Anton, a horseplayer friend in the Vancouver area, an upholsterer by trade, WON $22,050 FOR A MERE $7.60 TICKET!   This was his ticket which he played at the Hard Rock Casino in Coquitlam near his home.  It was his biggest score ever.
He wheeled  6,7 / 3,6 / 1 / 4 / 4, 8,12  (2 x 2 x 1 x 1 x 3 x 60-cents = $7.60)
His horses paid $5.20, $18, $7.80, $9.80 and $31.60.
Can we learn from him? Of course.  Click here to see the program pages. Anton explains below why he took the horses he took.  Note especially #8 I Love You Honey in race 9, a horse with terrible running lines in his last two starts.  Could you have taken that horse?
Chelsey Keiser
Rode I Love You Honey

Race 5: Took 6 and 7. #6 was program favourite. Got lucky when #2 passed #6 but #6 fought back to win by a nose at $5.20.

Race 6: Took 3 and 6. #3 was layoff from Hawthorne. #6 (the winner) had been bumped and steadied two races back ($18)
Race 7: Keyed #1. Race taken off the turf.  Lucky key.  (Horse had posted good speed in win on turf two races back) ($7.80)
Race 8: Keyed #4. Classy layoff horse from Hawthorne ($9.80)
Race 9: Took 4, 8 and 12.  Winner #8, I Love You Honey, had raced two levels higher on the turf, now drops down on dirt ($31.60).
Said Anton in his email:  “Obviously everything came together just right.  Lots of luck goes without saying.”   Does he have enough luck left to help this Saturday’s “I won big” group pick a winning pick-5?  He says he will email his picks.

ASD QUIETLY EXTENDS A HELPING HAND:  What is not generally known is that Assiniboia Downs has quietly been helping many fundraising groups through the years and

Darren Dunn (right) and former Edmonton Eskimo Donny “O” cleaning at Lighthouse Mission

CEO Darren Dunn joined other volunteers including former Edmonton Eskimo defensive tackle Donny “O” (Oramasionwu) last Saturday to serve food to 220 at the Lighthouse Mission. “Their politeness, manners and appreciation blew me away,” Darren said.Dunn says he has volunteered for Project Echo, a not-for-profit organization that, in his words, “has provided millions of dollars in food, new clothing and hope to Winnipeg’s most needy.”

Among other activities the Downs has supported over the past year have been the Manitoba Riding for the Disabled, CNIB Eye on the Arts, 2015 Scotiabank AIDS Walk for Life, the Annual Indigenous Minor Hockey Tournament, the Manitoba Schizophrenia Society, the Manitoba Real Estate Association Charity Golf Classic, the fundraising dinner for the Charleswood 55+ Active Living Centre, Manitoba High Schools Athletic Association, 2015 Grace Hospital Golf Classic and a sunset barbeque at FortWhyte Alive, just to name a few.
BAD NEWS, GOOD NEWS FOR “I WON BIG” GROUP:  The bad news for last Saturday’s “I won big” group, of course, was missing another improbable pick-5 at Tampa Bay (which nobody had).  And the good news?  The Coquitlam player who won the pick-5 last Sunday for $22,000 (which included Saturday’s input from the “I won big” group) has agreed to give the group his picks for this Saturday’s 10:30 a.m. workshop.  Hopefully, his luck is still at least lukewarm after being very hot Sunday when he spent just $7.20 to nab a small fortune!  The good thing is, group members are saying they feel we’re on the verge of nailing a biggie.
WOODBINE TRAINING OPENS IN A WEEK:  Woodbine’s dirt training track opens a week from today.  Its 130-day thoroughbred meet begins Saturday, April 9 and ends Sunday, Dec. 4.  The Queen’s Plate is scheduled for July 3.
COUNTDOWN TO WORLD CUP: The $10 million World Cup in Dubai, with California Chrome and Frosted likely to be among the main contenders (Chrome finished second last year), is six weeks from this Saturday.
with Marshall Posner
Q.  How do I make handicapping notes using the HPI system?
A.  One of the great new features of HPIBet is the ability to track handicapping notes for any horse you like. To make a note on a specific horse, simply click on the horse’s name and when the pop-up window opens, click on the My Notes tab (view image here). This will open another pop-window to make notes.  You wish to note a horse’s trip, track biases, jockey’s ride, etc. (view image here). Be sure to hit the SAVE button before you close the window because it doesn’t auto-save your notes. Once you’ve saved a note, you may also watch the replay for this race by simply clicking the video icon or the arrow icon which opens the video in a new window (view image here).
You can make multiple notes for the same horse in different races as well. HPIBet doesn’t at present have a notification system to tell you when your horse is running but I’m told one is being developed and will be launched shortly. In the meantime, use the Virtual Stable to track your watch horses, a free service provided by Equibase here.
*       *       *
Last week’s Insider incorrectly said that a two-week betting limit for HPI bettors travelling in the U.S. is a Canadian regulation.  In fact, it is something that two groups of U.S. race tracks–those under the Stronach and Churchill umbrellas–asked for to reduce competition with their own computer-betting operations. Woodbine automatically blocks wagers on those tracks after two weeks.  However, not ALL U.S. tracks are blocked.  You can still wager on Penn National, Hawthorne, Charles Town, Sam Houston, Delta, Balmoral and others.
See the tracks on the two-week restricted lists here.
Got a question for Marshall? Email theinsider@ASDowns.com
Review previous questions and answers here.

HISTORY ON THE HOOF: The best of Bob

Did you know . . .   owner/trainer Murray Duncan had a horse that raced eight times in a 42-day meet, winning the first seven and finishing second in his final start on the last day of the meet?  Who was this wonder horse and when did he accomplish that amazing feat?  Bob’s got the amazing details here.

Yes, I have done my duty. During my life I have aimed at practical results. I hope that after my death my spirit will bring practical results. All that I have done and risked… Rested certainly on the conviction that I was called upon to do something for my country I know that through the grace of God I am the founder of Manitoba.

Louis Riel

Louisville Courier-Journal – Lintner – Report: Runhappy pointed to Churchill stakes

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – Sarah Sis hoping to rebound in Bayakoa

The Jean Genie

Bloodhorse – LaMarra – Green Gratto Among Nine in General George

Bloodhorse – Calculator to Make Return at Santa Anita

Lady and the Track – Hammer – Projecting Favorites For The Cheltenham Festival


NY Times – Hoffman – After Revelation He Had C.T.E., Ken Stabler Is a Poignant Hall of Fame Addition

Lonely Bull

LA Times – AP – Breakthrough: Scientists detect gravitational waves, just as Einstein predicted 100 years ago

NY Times – Overbye – Gravitational Waves Detected, Confirming Einstein’s Theory

You can’t blame gravity for falling in love.
Albert Einstein

Rock N Roll Music

National Post – Christie Blatchford: Defence team a contrast to over-delicate view of women around Ghomeshi trial

National Post – Christie Blatchford: The Ghomeshi sex-assault case started falling apart right from the start

Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, nor hell a fury like a woman scorned.
William Congreve


NY Times – Belson – Cam Newton’s Season of Superlatives Ends in Disappointment

FiveThirtyEight – Cam Newton’s Press Conference Was A Perfect Hot Take Moment

NY Times – Powell – Cam Newton, a Man of Many Talents, Falls Short on Leadership

Phil has a question:

If Newton’s not downtrodden, sour and petulant, wouldn’t you be checking the betting patterns.

How would Michael Powell react in a post game interview after he’s been beaten literally and physically.

When will the all too human reporters cease to expect superhuman performance and reaction from all to human athletes.

National Post – Cole – Carolina Panthers’ Cam Newton takes the heat over post-Super Bowl behaviour, but Denver Broncos weren’t exactly gracious in victory

FiveThirtyEight – Wagner – Cam Newton Never Had A Chance

Phil has a question:

Wanna know the real reason the Newton’s so sour:

Forbes – Badenhausen – California Taxes Will Eat Up All Of Cam Newton’s Super Bowl Earnings

Phil has another question:

Is there anyone out their feeling sorry for poor Cam because he’s being asked to pay a nominal share of taxes to play in a state subsidized stadium.

LA Times – Torres – Can Inglewood’s NFL-fueled turnaround be a success if its schools are failing?

Rikki Don’t Lose That Number

National Post – Lawrence Solomon: Europe is planning to deport hundreds of thousands of Muslims

With Malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds.
Abraham Lincoln

The Globe and Mail – Jim Prentice – Our energy economy should be celebrated, not shunned

Finance Minister Joe Ceci accepted the auditor general’s recommendations, promising the government is moving forward with a “21st-century” cash management system. Ceci blamed the parade of former PC governments for growing complacent during boom times and failing to update government banking processes.

“I think $100 oil certainly masks a lot of inefficiencies and we’re taking action on that now,” Ceci said.

“We need to poke into every area to make sure if there’s any excess cash or payments sitting around, we do things in a 21st-century way.”

Edmonton Journal – Dykstra – Alberta losing millions to bad cash management: auditor general

Phil has a question:

Would Alberta not be in a better position to celebrate its energy economy today if Diamond Jim and Alison Redford and Thomas Lukazsuk and Shirley McClellan and the rest of the Tory cronies would have used the financial  prudence they’re preaching to the Alberta NDP government rather than squandered Alberta’s energy riches like a bunch of drunken sailors on shore leave.

If Minister Ceci is poking into every area when’s he finally going to get around to Horse Racing Alberta and clean out the dead wood.

Out of Time

LA Times – Eagles’ Glenn Frey to be saluted by bandmates at Grammy Awards

Hotel California

NY Times – Bruni – Feminism, Hell and Hillary Clinton

Phil has a question:

How many females in the US are sick and tired of being told:

Image result for virginia slims ad you've come

Southern Living – 14 Romantic Dinner Recipes for Valentine’s Day

NY Times – Our Best Chocolate Recipes

Bitter Southerner – Rushin – Kosher Gumbo

Let It Be

LA Times – Pugmire – Boxing writers select Floyd Mayweather Jr. fighter of the year

NY Times – Cacciola – It’s Like the N.B.A., Minus the Money, Fame and Fans

Nowhere Special

The Globe and Mail – Newman – Is Donald Trump bad for American politics?

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.
Abraham Lincoln

The Globe and Mail – Semley – Depp does the Donald and it’s a joke … a great one

The Art of The Deal

Phil’s Drink & A Flick

Reunion Cocktail

Beautiful Girls

Girl You’ll Be A Woman Soon

National Post – Shaw – How the rise of puffy parkas in Canada led to the downfall of Danier Leather Inc.

FiveThirtyEight – Malone – John Kasich Is The Anti-Trump

How Many More Times

NY Times – Healy and Martin – Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders Win in New Hampshire

You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was.
Abraham Lincoln

Southern Living – The Grumpy Gardener – Bender –  Toto, We’re Not In Bama Anymore

It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.

Charles Dickens

LA Times – Yardley – After the Oregon standoff, a new occupation begins — this time it’s the birds

Don’t Let Me be Misunderstood


Whatever ails me as I get older, know this: I will fight to the final breath. I told the kids the other day that I plan on living to watch Super Bowl 100 with them. By then, maybe Beyoncé will be retired too.

Perhaps she’ll sing at my funeral?

In any case, it’ll be a nice service. According to my will, they’ll place me (face up) on a pool table at a noisy Irish bar, surrounded by plenty of cheese and processed meats. If it’s happy hour, you can order the fried calamari. If not, tough.

The eulogy, which I’m writing myself, will go like this:

“Simple man. Kind. Steady. Really ripped. Liked his bacon. Basked in idle moments. Never quite the same after ‘Taxi’ went off the air.

“Gooooooooo Cubs!!!”

LA Times – Erskine – I’ve always been the retiring sort, and the time is ripe for idling with bacon and sunsets

All things must pass.

George Harrison

Ramble On

Not Fade Away

Fashions fade, style is eternal.
Yves Saint Laurent

Who Do You Love

That’s All Folks

Phil M Stockmen

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