The most anticipated birth in thoroughbred racing in years finally occurred!
Champion Zenyatta had a baby boy last night just after 10 p.m., with a white star and some white on his feet. The colt is by Bernardini and Ann moss took this photo. Congrats Zenyatta!
DIXIE STRIKE, a half sister to last year’s Queen’s Plate winner Inglorious. has been named this year’s early Plate favourite in the winterbook odds, an annual, mythical press release, this year issued by Daily Racing Form.
Not only was it unusual that INGLORIOUS was made the favourite last year, the first time since 1973 that a filly was made fave, but now it’s two straight seasons with a filly at the top of the class. DIXIE STRIKE, who cost half as much as her famed half sister at auction, recently won the $150,000 Florida Oaks and is headed to a stakes race at Gulfstream for owner John Oxley and trainer Mark Casse.
I’m excited to have the early book favorite for The Queen’s Plate and I think she deserves to be, Casse told Thoroughblog. “Hopefully if she can stay healthy she can be the winner.”
The Plate nominations list, at 117 horses, lost a lot of its lustre when MARITIMER, the likely champion 2yo of last year, was not made eligible by new owner Ramzan Kadryov. With the new supplemental system, any horse can be entered in the Plate right up until entry day for a sum of money.
The top boy on the list is MENLO CASTLE, a gelding owned by Conor Heatly who was 2nd to Maritimer in the Coronation Futurity last year.
ANNASAN FOALS AT HILL ‘N’ DALE
Canadian Broodmare of the Year “Annasan” foaled a healthy colt by Champion sire DISTORTED HUMOR on 3/02, 2012 at Hill ‘N’ Dale Farms in Ontario, Canada.
Annasan is the dam of 4 winners from 4 starters including Adjalah (stakes placed winner of $387,6665), Coronation Futurity winner ARCO’S GOLD ($388,678), and Canadian Horse of the Year A BIT O GOLD.
A BIT O GOLD was a stakes winner at 2 and 3 winning 2 of the 3 legs of the Canadian Triple Crown (finishing 2nd in the $1,000,000 Queen’s Plate). A BIT O GOLD was a multiple graded stakes winner at 4 and retired with earnings of $1,788,255.
Annasan is due to be bred back to MINESHAFT in 2012.
IS THIS DUNCAN GUY FOR REAL?
Time to Check Your Facts Mr. Duncan: Ontario Horse Racing Industry Association Says
Toronto – Finance Minister Dwight Duncan provided an emailed statement to the Windsor Star on Wednesday March 7, 2012, regarding the OLG Slots at Racetrack program that contained a number of inaccurate statements.
“Since 1998 the horse racing industry has received $3.4 billion in government support, including $345 million last year alone. That’s more money than we spend on water and road safety and more than 10 times the amount the governments of Alberta, B.C. and Manitoba provide to their horse racing industries combined. We as a government need to be accountable to the taxpayer and decide whether or not we’re spending their hard-earned dollars wisely. The review of the slots at racetrack program will help us to do just that.”
Minister Duncan claims the horse racing industry has received “government support”.
Fact Check: The horse racing industry has received no government support, but has received it’s share of revenue generated from OLG Slot machines at private racetracks in Ontario as part of a revenue sharing agreement with OLG.
Minister Duncan claims Ontario provides “more than 10 times the amount the governments of Alberta, B.C. and Manitoba provide to their horse racing industries combined.”
Fact Check: Alberta provides 67% of revenue generated by slots at racetracks to their horse-racing industry, while Manitoba provides 100% of revenue from slots at racetracks to their horse-racing industry. By comparison, Ontario provides just 20% to our horse-racing industry.
Minister Duncan claims tax dollars are being spent on horse racing in Ontario. “We as a government need to be accountable to the taxpayer and decide whether or not we’re spending their hard-earned dollars wisely.”
Fact Check: The OLG Slots at Racetrack Program is not a taxpayer subsidy. It contributes $1.1 billion dollars of profit to the Government of Ontario and provides taxpayers with $1.1 billion dollars worth of healthcare funding that does not come from tax revenue.
“We would hope the Finance Minister would stick to the facts when discussing the merits of the OLG Slots at Racetrack Program, because the facts demonstrate this is an excellent value for money,” said Sue Leslie, President of the Ontario Horse Racing Industry Association (OHRIA).
OHRIA has launched a website http://value4money.ca to allow Ontarians to write members of Provincial Parliament to show their support for the horse racing and breeding industry in Ontario.
THOROUGHBLOG continues to get a lot of mail and comments on this tenuous issue, as well as comments regarding stores in the press, in particular a story last week trying to alert the government of this province that our business is and wants to, carry on as normal. In order to do that, the industry would like to know what the direction will be, as David Willmot said, the sooner we know, the better.
I am not sure which of the “big farms” you spoke to, but at Park Stud they have not seen any change in bookings nor has anyone even hinted at cancelling a contract due to the Drummond Report. Bookings to all stallions have been consistent since the Drummond Report was released and consistent to the corresponding time in previous years.
Spendthrift are as committed as ever to our local industry.
Sensationalist articles like the one in the Toronto Star are not doing the industry any favours and are only going to potentially incite unnecessary fear among breeders.
Keep Calm and Carry On.
The point of the article was not to ‘incite unnecessary fear’ but instead, to state the case of breeders who may have long term plans. Mostly, there has just been a lot of queries from breeders from all over, to myself and other farms, perhaps no contracts have been outright cancelled, but there are concerns to be sure.
Just reading what Mr. Duncan said as of YESTERDAY (see above) makes one wonder what exactly they are thinking.