A Bit O'Gold, Canada's Horse of the Year in 2005, has been retired from racing.
The 5-year-old gelded son of Gold Fever, owned by The Two Bit Racing Stable and trained by Catherine Day Phillips, won 10 races from 18 career starts. His victories included the final two jewels of the Canadian Triple Crown Series in 2004, the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie and the Breeders' Stakes at Woodbine, under regular rider Jono Jones.
"We felt it best to retire him at this point in time," said Day Phillips. "He deserves a dignified retirement."
Equally effective on both surfaces, "Goldie" galloped to victory in last year's Chinese Cultural Centre Stakes (Can-III) and Sky Classic Stakes (Can-II) on turf and Dominion Day Stakes (Can-III) on the Woodbine main track en route to the Horse of the Year title.
"We made the decision to retire A Bit O'Gold due to general wear and tear from racing," said Day Phillips.
The Ontario-bred also captured last year's Older Male and Top Turf Male Sovereign honors.
A Bit O'Gold launched his 2-year-old campaign by winning his first three starts, including a 1 1/2-length victory in the 2003 Coronation Futurity, stamping himself as the 2004 Queen's Plate Winterbook favorite.
The Beclawat Stable-bred star was triumphant in the Plate Trial, a 3 1/4-length victor in the 1 1/8-mile main track event, before a narrow loss in the Queen's Plate to Niigon. He went on to take the Sovereign as Canada's champion 3-Year-Old Male.
"He'll be sadly missed by all of us at The Two Bit Racing Stable and Kingfield Racing Stable," said Day Phillips. "He's been a major part of all our lives."
Plans call for A Bit O'Gold to stay at Day Phillips' barn on the Woodbine backstretch for the next week or two, before making the short trip to her Kingfield Farms in Maple to enjoy his retirement.
A Bit O'Gold, who also recorded three second-place finishes and two third-place finishes, earned $1,888,155 for The Two Bit Racing Stable.