One of the most hotly debated races for Horse of the Year honors in recent memory will conclude tonight, Monday, Jan. 17, with announcement of whether it is finalist (in alphabetical order) Blame, Goldikova, or Zenyatta.
Winners in all 17 horse and human categories will be announced at the 40th annual Eclipse Awards ceremony at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach in Miami Beach, Fla. As each is announced, the winner will be posted at Bloodhorse.com, along with an accompanying article that includes vote totals.
The winner of Horse of the Year will be announced at approximately 9:40 p.m. (ET). TVG will televise the ceremony, beginning at 6 p.m. with a one-hour pre-show, followed by the announcements of the winners.
Blame, winner of the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I); Goldikova, the French mare who captured the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT); and Zenyatta, the Breeders’ Cup Classic runner-up, are the three finalists for the coveted title of Horse of the Year.
Blame, owned and bred by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, held off the fast closing mare Zenyatta by a head in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I) on Nov. 6 at Churchill Downs in Louisville. Blame, who won four races in five starts in 2010, is also a finalist for champion Older Male. Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider are also finalists in both the champion owner and breeder categories.
Goldikova captured her unprecedented third consecutive TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) last fall in a season in which she won five group or grade I races. Goldikova is also a finalist in the female turf category. Owned by Alain and Gerard Wertheimer, Goldikova has already won the 2010 Cartier Racing Award as the European Horse of the Year.
Zenyatta, runner up for Horse of the Year in 2008 and 2009, was undefeated in 19 career races prior to the Classic. A winner of five grade I races in 2010, she is also a finalist in the older female category, an award she has won the past two years. Zenyatta’s, owners, Jerry and Ann Moss, are finalists for champion owner, and Zenyatta’s trainer, John Shirreffs, is a finalist for champion trainer.
• Owner: Claiborne Farm and Adele B. Dilschneider, Mr. and Mrs. Jerome S. Moss, WinStar Farm
• Breeder: Adena Springs, Claiborne Farm and Adele B. Dilschneider, Brereton C. Jones
• Trainer: Bob Baffert, Todd Pletcher, John Shirreffs
• Jockey: Ramon Dominguez, Garrett Gomez, John Velazquez
• Apprentice Jockey: Forest Boyce, Omar Moreno, Angel Serpa
Also presented during the ceremony will be previously announced two Eclipse Award of merit honors, one to Marylou Whitney and one to Claiborne Farm, as a special award to the Zenyatta team.
The ceremony also honors Media Eclipse Award winners, who were also previously announced. Award winners, determined by a judges’ panel for each category and previously announced, are:
--Photography – Michael Clevenger, Louisville Courier-Journal, “Breeders’ Cup Classic Finish”, Nov. 7, 2010.
--Writing – Feature/Commentary: Wright Thompson, ESPN.com, “The Legend of Zenyatta”; Oct. 10, 2010.
--Writing - News/Enterprise – Bill Finley, Thoroughbred Daily News, “Do We Need a Sturdier Racehorse? Racing Grapples With Smaller Fields, Fewer Starts”, Nov. 16, 2010.
--Television - Live Racing: ESPN, “The Breeders’ Cup World Championships”, ABC/ESPN; Mike McQuade, Coordinating Producer; November 5-6, 2010.
--Television - Feature: HRTV, “Inside Information: Swale”; Amy Zimmerman, Producer; February 28, 2010.
--Audio and Multi-Media Internet – Horse Racing Radio Network (HRRN), 2010 Breeders’ Cup World Championships; Mike Penna, President; Nov. 5-6. 2010.