KINGARVIE, you remember him right?


Kingarvie, an implacable individual who certainly would not have won an equine beauty contest, was a stringy chestnut gelding with a long, skinny neck and a heart as big as a cannon ball. He toiled for ten years, competing in stakes races from Canada to Florida. He ended his career in 1953 in a $2,000 claiming race in Detroit with earnings of $97,700, a record for a Canadian-bred. His remarkable career showed 169 starts, with 30 wins, 21 seconds and 27 thirds.

Owned by R.S. (Sam) McLaughlin’s Parkwood Stable of Oshawa, he won the King’s Plate in 1946 with such facility that not one of his sleek red hairs was ruffled when he tiptoed back to the winner’s circle. Sent off at odds of 1-to-2 he splashed home over a rain-drenched Woodbine track before a crowd of 30,000. Kingarvie was trained by Arthur Brent and lost his first two races at age two, but then ran together a string of ten consecutive wins, including the Coronation Futurity, Mrs. Orpen’s Cup and Saucer and the Clarendon Plate, followed by wins at age three in the Plate Trial and the King’s Plate.
Later in 1946 he placed second to Windfields in the Breeders’ Stakes before capturing the Canadian International Championship at Long Branch. At age four he won the Hallandale Handicap at Gulfstream, was second in the Tropical Park Handicap and third in Bougainvillea at Hialeah. At Woodbine that year he won the King Edward Gold Cup and finished in the money in that prestigious race for two more years. Kingarvie’s final stakes triumph came in 1950 in Montreal when he equalled the track record in capturing the Cattarinich Memorial Handicap at Blue Bonnets.


TODAY, the Kingarvie will be run for the 39th time and it is an Ontario sired event for 2yos at 1 1/16 miles. Favoured ASSERTING BEAR comes off a win in the Coronation Futurty.


HENKE kicked off a good day for the sire SLIGO BAY (IRE) as he won a maiden allowance race, the 1st event of the day. The 3yo gelding was making only his 3rd career start and he is a homebred for Frank Mermenstein and Tom McCrocklin Julia Carey trains and Emma-Jayne Wilson rode the gelding, who edged a tough Executive Barlee right at the wire.

PHINEUS won his maiden for $8,000 in race 2 for Frank Cirillo and Hidden Springs. This 4yo, bred in Argentine, missed a year of racing before this past June and he picked up many shares and was a handy winner on a big class drop. Kevin Attard trains.

SARATOGA BOY led all the way to win the 3rd race for $20,000 claiming for Mark Fournier. He had blinkers off for the first time since his 2011 debut. David Garcia rode. This was the FASTEST day of the day according to Beyer Figures as he posted a 74.

ARAGVI is all over the place as far as class levels but he won his 2nd race in his last 3 starts with the drop to $9,500 for race 4. He is a Goldmart Farms homebred by Trajectory.

COLD CERTIFIED, a full brother to stakes winner LEGAL MOVE, won his maiden in race 5 and he is a Bold Executive 3yo who led all the way under Emile Ramsammy.

SKIMMER JIM gave trainer Steven Chircop his 3rd winner of the meeting when he won an allowance race for Ontario sired older horses. He was the 2nd nice winner for SLIGO BAY on the day. Bred by Paul O’Brien, this 3yo colt is owned by Barbara Side and he began his career at Northlands Park.

STRAWBERRY SCARLET came from miles behind down the middle of the track to win for the 3rd time this year for Bradscot Farm and trainer Tom Bowden, She is an Ontario bred filly, foaled at the famous WINDFIELDS FARM.

ALPHA AWAY, owned by C S Dowson Farms and trained by Robert Williams, won her 2nd race of the year and her career with an inside rally in the 5 furlong race, a strater allowance for horses who have raced for $25,000 or less in the last 2 years.

The winner was a recent claim for $20,000. Gary Boulanger gave the Put It Back gal a great ride.

(There have been a lot of 5 furlong races this fall, tons more than in the spring!).

Race 9 – DIXIE TROOP was 3 to 5 but scratched after he appeared to have an iffy warm-up. The bettors of Pick 4’s etc. got luck as they inherited MILWUKEE MIXER, who had a slow start but rushed up and held on to win for Don MacRae and Winston Penny.

The last race was the Jackpot High 5 but there was no single winner so the carryover is $108,000 to today!

This race proved that it is better to be lucky that good sometimes. Patrick Husbands was on YER BLUES a 2nd time starter who had been blown out in his only race for Tucci Stables. He was down a bit in class to $25,000 claiming and pressed the pace to the stretch run. Meanwhile, behind him, SOROKOLITIS was in traffic trouble and he angled out too late to catch YER BLUES and the 4 to 5 favourite, SILENT BLESSING blew the turn and went 6-7 wide and rallied too late. The winner is a son of the Tucci stallion Endeavor.




Saturday, Betfair Hollywood Park, post time: 6:04 p.m. EST
HOLLYWOOD STARLET S.-GI, $500,000, 2yo, f, 1 1/16m (AWT)
1 Concave K Colonel John Gutierrez O’Neill 15-1
2 Taste Like Candy K Candy Ride (Arg) Bejarano Hollendorfer 7-2
3 Be Proud K Proud Citizen Maldonado Baffert 12-1
4 Bajan Speightstown Espinoza Callaghan 5-1
5 Untapable Tapit Talamo Asmussen 4-1
6 Arethusa A.P. Indy Nakatani Harty 4-1
7 Streaming K Smart Strike Garcia Baffert 8-1
8 Rosalind Broken Vow Rosario McPeek 3-1



3rd-AQU, $72,000, Alw, Opt. Clm. ($75,000), NW1X,
2yo, f, 7f, 1:24, ft.
ALPACA FINA (f, 2, Big Brown–Ms Brookski {GSW, $323,810}, by Montbrook) was successful in her debut in for a $50,000 tag at Belmont Sept. 20. Third in the Sharp Cat S. there Oct. 27, she took an optional claimer here by 6 1/4 lengths Nov. 21. Dismissed at 6-1 this time, Alpaca Fina rated off the pace and wide down the backstretch. She angled out to the five path at the top of the lane and put in a late run to take the lead in the shadow of the wire and win by a half-length.
Winekeeper (Pure Prize) was second. Sales history: $10,000 yrl ’12 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: SP, 4-3-0-1,
$113,200.  O-Drawing Away Stable. B-Big Brown Syndicate & Christine Hayden  (ON). T-David Jacobson.



Sharing a quiet moment at Saratoga…Janis Maine photo

Battling for a win – Michael Burns photo

Streaking to victory in the Kentucky Cup Sprint…AMBER CHALFIN PHOTO

Midnight Lute wins the 2008 Breeders' Cup Sprint

Remarkable 2nd place finisher to MIDNIGHT LUTE in the BREEDERS’ CUP SPRINT IN 2008.. TERENCE DULAY PHOTO




It may have been five years ago but when you have a horse like FATAL BULLET who takes you to the top of the horse racing world.. THE top as in the Breeders’ Cup and runs his heart out, it feels as if it could have happened yesterday.

To watch the replay of the 2008 Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita is to relive a great moment for a Woodbine horse, a nondescript fellow owned by Canadian Danny Dion, trained by a Canadian, Reade Baker and ridden by Woodbine’s own Eurico da Silva. There he was, strolling to the lead through sizzling fast fractions, determined to get to the wire first. Only Midnight Lute, the Spring winner in 2007, got by the Bullet that day and he had to run 6 furlongs in a stunning 1:07 flat to do it.

Fatal Bullet was a three-year-old that year, a hotshot sprinter who had been purchased at Frank Stronach’s Two-Year-Old In Training sale in Ocala, Florida the previous spring for $27,000.

Sure, he looked good as a solidly built, sizy blood bay but his sire, Red Bullet, a star as a racehorse, had only modest reviews with his foals and his dam, Sararegal, was a useful Canadian runner by Regal Classic. There was not all that much there to think that Bear and Baker had a superstar on their hands.

That is until he won his career debut by almost three lengths on August 6, 2007.

Through six years of racing mostly at the top level of sprint-dom, Fatal Bullet was almost always in the thick of the battle. A gelding who would go out and give everything he had and then go about his business back at the barn.

Today, Fatal Bullet is being rewarded for all his hard work: his Horse of the Year and champion Sprinter titles, his $1.3 million in earnings, his thrills that he gave him human family. Fatal Bullet has been retired from racing and will enjoy a life of leisure, okay, maybe some pony work, for the rest of his days. Dion does not want his prized horse competing anymore in high claiming races and made the decision this week.

“He’s perfectly sound and healthy,” said Baker. “But he was not competing at the level anymore that he is accustomed to. He has been a perfect gentleman and a soldier for seven seasons, putting his best foot forward.”

And those fast feet took Fatal Bullet to the winner’s circle 12 times in 39 races that were well spread out since 2007.  His wins were almost always as thrilling as his Breeders’ Cup win and Baker points to his victory this year, as an eight-year-old, in the prep for the Highlander Stakes, as one of the most emotional and satisfying wins by his equine hero.

In that six furlong turf dash, the Bullet grabbed a short lead early in the race and would not let his rivals past, something he did on so many occasions.

His stakes wins included a monstrous 7 1/2 length score in the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Sprint at Turfway Park as a 3-year-old, posting a 108 Beyer Figure right before his Breeders’ Cup heroics.

In his first race as a 4-year-old; the gelding walloped his rivals in the Bold Venture Stakes, scorching 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:14 4/5, a track record, and earning a 109 Beyer Figure. He won the Phoenix Stakes at Keeneland that same year and another trip to the Spring saw him check in traffic but finish just 2 1/2 lengths behind winner Dancing In Silks.

Fatal Bullet followed his Baker stablemates to Florida and back most years and he traveled from coast to coast, quietly becoming one of the Woodbine’s most popular and much loved runners. In his final race last Sunday at Woodbine, the Kennedy Road Stakes, he tried his best to stay with the pacesetters in a very tough race but it was his younger, up and coming stablemate Bear No Joke, who took the Bullet’s torch.

“He never bit anyone, kicked anyone, acted up on the track,” said Baker. “You never heard his name, he just went and did his thing.” Baker will find a place for Fatal Bullet to winter and make sure that the horse will be living close to where he and his wife Janis can see him regularly.

“He has taken us to the peak of racing and now itis time for us to return the favour in kind, Janis and I are thrilled to serve him well just as he served us.”

Enjoy the rest of your life FATAL BULLET!


Fatal Bullet – Career Statistics:

Starts: 39
Firsts: 12
Seconds: 5
Thirds: 8
Earnings: $1,377,256





ONTARIO HORSE RACING IN NEWS AGAIN, hearing for Bertrand begins

A large Ontario Racing Commission report released last year did not make any media outlets at the time but now, the hearing into the appeal by Woodbine employee Bobby Bertrand has begun and it has hit the newswires.

“Woodbine Entertainment Group is dismayed that Robert Bertrand, a respected 47-year employee of the company, has been denied an (official’s) license by the Ontario Racing Commission,” Steve Koch, Woodbine’s vice-president of thoroughbred racing said in a prepared statement.

“Bobby has served the horse racing industry with integrity and fully cooperated with the (commission’s) recent investigation. WEG stands behind its clerk of scales and looks forward to a resolution in this matter.”

The first day of testimony already began with fireworks as jockey Chantal Sutherland Kruse admitted to trying to beat the breathalyzer: she blew over and then was given another chance by Bertrand.
The details are below from the TORONTO STAR:


Woodbine jockey tried to cheat breathalyzer

“I panicked,” Chantal Sutherland Kruse says of her 2012 violation, as a hearing began into allegations against race track employee Robert Bertrand
By: Mary Ormsby Feature reporter, Published on Fri Dec 06 2013

Canadian jockey Chantal Sutherland Kruse told an Ontario Racing Commission panel Thursday that she tried to cheat an alcohol breath test at Woodbine Race Track last year by using an asthma inhaler.

Instead of thwarting the mandatory pre-race test, Sutherland Kruse blew over the limit and was suspended for five days.

“I made a very big mistake,” the California-based jockey told a three-person commission panel of her Oct. 6, 2012, violation.

“I was riding for my dad and my brother (that day at Woodbine). It was a very big day for me. I panicked.”

Her startling admission came during the first day of a commission hearing into allegations that a senior Woodbine race track employee, Robert Bertrand, failed to properly report jockeys impaired breath tests results on race days.

Read the Star’s report here.



By: Mary Ormsby Feature reporter, Published on Thu Dec 05 2013

The Ontario Racing Commission is investigating allegations that a senior official at Woodbine Race Track failed to report alcohol breath tests showing jockeys were impaired on race days.

Robert Bertrand, the thoroughbred “clerk of scales” at Woodbine, has been denied a licence from the commission pending the outcome of an investigation that began more than a year ago. A hearing in the matter begins Thursday.

The racing commission is a Crown agency with broad governing and investigative powers. Its job is to ensure that racing is conducted safely and fairly to “protect the public interest.”

see more at




ULTIMATE DESTINY, shown in an earlier win, loves to win races. MICHAEL BURNS PHOTO

ULTIMATE DESTINY won the Sir Barton Stakes late on Wednesday night at Woodbine, his 3rd stakes score of the season and landed himself a spot on the short list for champion older male horse in Canada.
This is a wild story of a chestnut 4yo gelding who races with his head held higher than the norm and an owner and trainer who bought him privately a year ago.
In that year since he moved from the ownership of Brenda Selwyn Waxman, who sold most or all of her horses last year, this guy has won over $300,000.
At one time he was 5th in the Queen’s Plate behind Strait of Dover, now he is a top Ontario sired runner who almost won the Grade 3 Seagram Cup in August.
On Wed. night, he had no business catching Urban Forester to win the 1 1/16 mile Sir Barton but he is a gutsy, thrilling fellow who has been 1st or 2nd in all but one of his races this year.
Alec Fehr is his owner and trainer and Fehr, who has operated a small stable (he has only had 16 starters this year) said the following:

“I thought that horse [Urban Forester] got away on us, but he dug in and wanted to catch that horse. “I’m very lucky to have this horse, the 126 pound weight concerned me a lot, carrying 9 pounds more than Pender Harbour and the two of us have been not too far from each other. But it didn’t matter to him, he didn’t know.”
Eurico Da Silva rode the winner who is now 7 for 22 in his career.
he was bred by Minshall farms and is by former Ontario sire Dance to Destiny and from the Pleasant Tap mare One On Tap.

More Wednesday – Tough night early on for players who love the big chalks. COURAGE BELONGS rallied to win the first race at 5 to 1 for TEC Racing and Dominion Bloodstock and Dave Cotey. It was a maiden 2yo race for $25,000 and the winner is a Belong to Me colt who is 1 for 7 now. In that race, 1 to 2 shot Weekend Affair was in bounce-mode off his latest and was up the track.

Race 2- KAWAGUCHI won for the 7th timein her career in the $7,500 claiming race and was claimed by Barb Pirie. She was winning for the 3rd time this year for Frank Cirillo and Marty Drexler. Another big favourite int hat race, Starship Sabrina, was also flat.

race 3– the favourite players were happy when INGLORIOUS SONG was up to win the $10,000 claiming race for non-winners of 3. She is a Broken Vow filly owned by Sal Mehta and partner and trainer by Kevin Attard, his 24th winner of the meeting.

The Pick 4 started off with MISS CAMELOT coming from last place in the 6 furlong dash to win the $10,000 maiden claiming event for Bill Hicks and trainer Sid Attard. She is an Ontario bred by Spring at Last bed by WinStar.

In race 5, JUST B POSITIVE led all the way through 1 1.16 miles and won the $62,50 claiming event for her 3rd win in her 10th race this season. She is owned by Un Stable and trained by Julia Carey.
This barn had a tough day on Sunday when its PERFECT YEAR broke down in a race.

Race 6 went to front running BUG’S GIRL while 2 to 5 shot TAKE A GAMBLE could only be 3rd.

the 7th race, an allowance, Ontario sired event for older horses went to SILENT YET DEADLY, another winner for the red hot Bear Stables. This Silent Name 3yo was winning for the first time since June when he was bought privately by the Bear Stables, He was re-adding blinkers, a big move for trainer Mike DePaulo.

The 9th and final race went to Dan Lucas’s Sky’s Legacy, who was odds-on in the 5 furlong race and while she finished in the middle of the track, she held on to win the $10,000 claiming race for trainer Nick Mileni Jr. Helen Vanek rode her 2nd winner from just her 6th Woodbine mount this year.