Yesterday in Brampton, tons of snow here again!



HAPPY FEBRUARY 1 – it’s snowy and frigid again here, let’s warm up with some great books to read, racing to watch and cheering on those Toronto Maple Leafs

A Thought on racing’s plight – as Thoroughblog continues to attempt to put the relevant news and links on the site about the battle that racing faces in Ontario, it is very disconcerting that every time the issue of casinos/change in Premier, etc. is discussed on the radio on talk shows, the horse racing industry is NEVER mentioned and no one ever gets through (or are we not all calling in?).

Read the blurb below on the CBC radio interview with Wynne yesterday – how can horse racing not be mentioned with so many people sitting on the edge of oblivion?

This is the problem with our industry: infighting and complaining amongst each other on who is doing what and who is not doing what. Call the people who make a difference!

I see plenty of discussions on social media about OHRIA, WEG, the government, the OLG but you have to get out there and voice your opinion in public. Have you emailed, called?

Why is Ms. Wynne talking on radio shows and NOT discussing horse racing??

It’s a big industry, it’s an important industry and anyone in horse racing, horse-side or front side, should be making their voices heard. Maybe some advertising would not hurt either?



BIOFUEL, Canadian Horse of the Year in 2010, is a proud mom – here is her Tapit colt born a few days ago at Airdrie Stud in Kentucky. Thank you to Ben Henley/Bloodstock Services, Airdrie




On Thursday, January 31 on CBC Radio, Kathleen Wynne, Ontario’s Premier-designate, was taking calls from the public and answering questions.

Although the topic of the provincial horse-racing industry was not broached on the air, she did briefly answer a question pertaining to the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.’s controversial gaming modernization plan.

Prior to her winning the recent Ontario Leadership race, Wynne went on the record as saying that, “Once I get there (become leader of the Ontario Liberal Party), we need to pick up this conversation (regarding the OLG modernization plan),” adding, “I want communities to be able to make this decision (location of casino expansion) in the way that they want to make it.”


OLG: get the right development by making priorities public

By: Darren MacDonald – Sudbury Northern Life

Councillors can influence how the city’s casino development proceeds by making it clear what it expects from the process, say representatives from the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.

Staff from the OLG updated councillors Jan. 29 on exactly what stage the process is at, and sought to clear up some misconceptions about the OLG in general.

Rick Gray, the OLG’s vice-president of gaming transformation, said the corporation’s mandate was to make money for the province, encourage responsible gambling, promote economic development and the public good.

He said the OLG contributes between $1.7 billion and $2 billion annually to the province and spends $40 million a year to fight problem gambling.

He said eight million people in Ontario gambled last year in some form. The goal of the current modernization process is to put gaming facilities where the people are, Gray said. Having slots facilities at racetracks is not necessarily ideal from a business perspective, he said.



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FORT ERIE – Will incoming premier Kathleen Wynne prove to be a friend to Ontario’s horse-racing industry?

That’s yet to be seen, but at the very least, some people industry see her victory in last week’s Liberal leadership contest as an opportunity to work with the government to chart a new course.



Woodbine winner MY NAME IS MICHAEL formerly of Dave Cotey stable

Saturday, Tampa Bay Downs, post time: 5:23 p.m.EST
SAM F. DAVIS S.-GIII, $250,000, 3yo, 1 1/16m
1 Silver Day K Silver Train Pedroza Kaplan 116
2 Divine Ambition K Divine Park Martinez Miller 116
3 My Name Is Michael K Macho Uno Rosario Mott 116
4 Speak Logistics High Cotton Serpa Plesa Jr 120
5 Lightning Stone Stonesider Coa Allyn 116
6a Northern Lion K Lion Heart Husbands Casse 116
7 Balino Mr. Elway Goodwin Rhone 116
8 Falling Sky K Lion Heart Saez Terranova 116
9a Dynamic Sky Sky Mesa Contreras Casse 116
10 Midnite Poppa Unbridled’s Song Lezcano Zito 116

Pasco Stakes winner Dynamic Sky, from the potent barn of trainer Mark Casse, headlines a 10-horse field for Saturday’s Grade III, $250,000 Sam F. Davis Stakes, one of three graded events on the track’s lucrative 12-race Festival Preview Day.

The improving Ontario-bred 3-year-old is owned by Oklahoma oilman John C. Oxley, who campaigned 2001 Kentucky Derby winner Monarchos. Oxley and Casse teamed to win both the Pasco and Grade II, $350,000 Tampa Bay Derby last year with Prospective, who finished second to Battle Hardened in the Sam F. Davis.

Luis Contreras, who rode Prospective in each of his 2012 starts at Tampa Bay Downs, has the assignment on Dynamic Sky.

Festival Preview Day marks the first time in the 87-year history of Tampa Bay Downs three graded stakes will be contested on one day. The Grade III, $150,000 Florida Oaks for 3-year-old fillies and the Grade III, $150,000 Endeavour Stakes for older fillies and mares will both be run on the turf course.

All three races will be at a distance of a mile-and-a-sixteenth. The 33rd running of the Davis is a precursor to the Tampa Bay Derby on March 9, with all roads subsequently leading to the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands on May 4.

The Davis will be the 11th race Saturday, with the 30th renewal of the Florida Oaks as the seventh and the 14th running of the Endeavour the ninth on the card.

In addition to trying to improve on Prospective’s 2012 Davis performance, Dynamic Sky will seek his third stakes victory from six lifetime starts. He won the $200,000 Simcoe Stakes as a 2-year-old in September at Woodbine on the Toronto track’s all-weather surface.

Dynamic Sky also finished second last year in the Grade I Dixiana Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland before heading west for the Grade I Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita, where he finished sixth, five-and-a-quarter lengths behind winner Shanghai Bobby.

The $100,000 Pasco Stakes was Dynamic Sky’s first effort as a 3-year-old. In the Davis, Dynamic Sky, who has drawn the No. 9 post, will run as a wagering entry with the Oxley-owned and Casse-trained Northern Lion, who broke his maiden in his previous race at Gulfstream on Dec. 22 by five-and-a-half lengths at the mile-and-a-sixteenth Davis distance. Patrick Husbands has the riding assignment.

Among Dynamic Sky’s opponents in the Davis will be a pair of familiar faces, Hardaway Stables, Inc.’s Speak Logistics and Silverton Hill LLC’s Divine Ambition.

Stakes winner Speak Logistics, who is from the barn of leading south Florida-based trainer Edward Plesa, Jr., will be making his 3-year-old debut. He last raced in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, finishing seventh, a half-length behind Dynamic Sky, after prompting the early pace. Leading Tampa Bay Downs jockey Angel Serpa will ride Speak Logistics.

Divine Ambition, who is trained by Darrin Miller, ran a strong third in the Pasco in only his third career start, behind Dynamic Sky and Casse-trained stablemate Sky Commander. Divine Ambition will be ridden by former Tampa Bay Downs leading jockey Willie Martinez.

The other Davis entrants with their trainers and jockeys include stakes-placed My Name Is Michael, trained by William Mott and to be ridden by Joel Rosario; Falling Sky, trained by John Terranova, II with Luis Saez in the saddle; Lightning Stone, trained by William Allyn, with Danny Coa named to ride; Silver Day, trained by William Kaplan with Marcelino Pedroza aboard; Balino, trained by Bernell Rhone, Nik Goodwin riding; and supplemental entry Midnite Poppa, from the barn of Nick Zito, Jose Lezcano up.

Both the Florida Oaks and Endeavour fields will consist of 12 horses, as the Tampa Bay Downs turf course continues to attract acclaim from horsemen far and wide. The Endeavour actually attracted 14 entrants, with Font and Last Full Measure currently on the sidelines but able to join the fun in the case of a late scratch.

Both races appear to be extremely wide-open affairs. In the Florida Oaks, favoritism may fall to Kitten’s Dumplings, who won the La Senorita Stakes on the turf at Retama Park two starts back. The 3-year-old Kentucky-bred is owned by Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey and trained by Michael Maker and will be ridden by Angel Serpa.

Other strong entrants should include the William Mott-trained Tapicat, Joel Rosario up from Gulfstream for the ride; Chad Brown-trained Wave Theory, to be ridden by Jose Lezcano; and Rusty Slipper, a supplemental entry from the barn of H. Graham Motion, Daniel Centeno in the saddle.

Casse, who has entered both Floral Sky and the lightly-raced Jadira in the Florida Oaks, is also represented in the Endeavour by Exclusive Love, who was the runner-up in last year’s edition of the race to eventual Eclipse Award-winning turf female Zagora.



MARITIMER, the champion 2yo who cost a hatful in a private sale a year ago, led for most of an all weather handicap at Meydan yesterday but faded late and finished sixth. The race was at 1 3/16 miles.
He was beatenm about four lengths and trainer Seth Benzel was pleased with the effort, his first outing since last November.

DON CAVALLO, a graded stakes winner by El Prado for Stronach Stables, continues his comeback with a 5 furlong workout at Palm Meadows yesterday in 1:02 3/5. He is trained by Reade Baker.





Colebrook’s first foal of 2013 – a filly by NIIGON out of SLAVENSKA, by Dance to Destiny. Photo courtesy of Colebrook



JOHN BRNJAS tells THOROUGHBLOG that of his 28 horses training at Classic Mile with daughter Ashlee, the highest priced yearling in Canada is progressing well. The English Channel – In Return colt, bred by Ivan Dalos, is not yet named (Colebrook Bear ? for his 2 owners?) cost $275,000 and was bought by Colebrook and Bear Stables. He will be trained by Ashlee Brnjas.

Brnjas also talked about three recent purchases at the Ocala mixed sale including a pulpit filly, APOCALYPTICA who he is excited about.

PERRITO, owned and bred by Colebrook Farms, won her maiden at Charles Town last night for $7,500. She is a 4yo by Tethra – Prettyas puppies from Highland Ruckus.



Thanks to Equidaily for these links, wild stuff!

Belgian Jockey Club to probe controversial ride
By Scott Burton 6:47PM 29 JAN 2013

Belgium: The Belgian Jockey Club’s disciplinary committee will on Friday hear what has rapidly become one of the most talked about riding performances in recent years.

Sacha Stappaerts finished a close third aboard Eastern Warrior, whom she both owns and trains, in a race over a mile at Mons on January 21.

Stappaerts seemed repeatedly to stand up in her irons and take a pull, despite Eastern Warrior appearing to travel better than his rivals, eventually losing out by a head and a neck.