The outpouring of tears and hugs and handshakes might have been conveying a message but for now, nobody’s commenting.

When six-year-old beauty Infinite Patience strutted into the $100,000 Ballerina Stakes winner’s circle at Hastings Racecourse on Saturday, October 7, it was her 13th consecutive victory in stakes competition.

“Before the race we were on pins and needles,” breeder and part-owner Bill DeCoursey would say later. “Would it be a Lucky 13 stakes win in a row or would fate get us on our 13th try?”

Bill & Noi DeCoursey.

Bill and Noi DeCoursey. (Michael Bye Photo)

Infinite Patience answered the question with an impressive two-and-a-half length victory under regular rider Antonio Reyes.

“When she cleared the quarter-pole I sensed we were okay,” DeCoursey said. “I have to admit, I was sweating and pacing and heaving inside. My wife Noi broke into tears. We arrived home and watched the race another seven or eight times. Noi was still shaking in the morning.”

Veteran trainer Barbara Heads became so emotional in the aftermath she had to cut short the traditional victory interview with BC Racebook analyst Bailey Williams.

The reactions from the euphoric winning connections immediately created the feeling it might have been the final curtain in a Hall of Fame career that resulted in 19 victories in 25 starts.

“Infinite Patience came out of the Ballerina stiff but okay,” DeCoursey said, choosing his words carefully. “We must give her and Barb a bit of time to assess the future.”

DeCoursey’s partner is Edmonton Oilers stalwart Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, the Burnaby-born NHL star who offered to buy a half-interest in Infinite Patience after watching her win her first race as a two-year-old.

“The years have gone by so quickly it all seems like a fairy tale,” DeCoursey says. “ We’re hoping our success encourages other small owners to realize it is possible to compete against the industry’s bigger outfits.”

Infinite Patience dominated the Thoroughbred Awards Dinner in 2022 with accolades that included Open Horse of the Year, BC Bred Horse of the Year, Champion Sprinter and Champion Older Filly/Mare in both the BC Bred and Open Divisions.

What’s next? All we can do at this point is stay tuned.
The 2023 live Thoroughbred racing season winds down at Hastings Racecourse this coming weekend with the final two Stakes of the year going Sunday: the $75,000 Glen Todd Fantasy for 2-year-old fillies and the $75,000 Glen Todd Ascot for 2-year-old colts & geldings. Start times for both Saturday and Sunday are 2 p.m.