Wise Dan, a major stakes winner in the United States and Canada last year, was named the 2012 Horse of the Year the evening of Jan. 19 at the 42nd Annual Eclipse Awards, presented by Daily Racing Form, The Stronach Group, and Breeders' Cup and held at Gulfstream Park.
Owned and bred by Morton Fink of Northbrook, Ill., Wise Dan finished first in the balloting with 194 votes, followed by Reddam Racing's I'll Have Another , winner of the 2012 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands and Preakness Stakes (both gr. I), with 30 votes, and Janis Whitham's Fort Larned, winner of last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) with 12 votes. (Complete Horse of the Year results are listed below.)
Wise Dan also won the 2012 older male and male turf Eclipse Awards, and becomes the first horse since John Henry in 1981 to win those two awards and Horse of the Year in the same year.
Wise Dan is a chestnut Kentucky-bred gelding by Wiseman's Ferry out of Lisa Danielle, by Wolf Power. He is expected to begin his 2013 campaign this spring.
In voting that concluded Jan. 3, 2013, Eclipse Awards voters cast their ballots to rank the top three horses and individuals in each championship division on a 10-5-1 point system basis. This voting established the top three finalists in each division, whose names were released Jan. 5.
The tallies below represent only first-place votes from members of the consolidated voting entities, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form, and the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters.
Voter participation rate: 254/272= 93.38%
The 2012 Eclipse Award winners and other candidates, along with number of first-place votes for each category appear below.
A complete composite of finalist voting is also available at: http://www.ntra.com/eclipse_awards/files/2012_Eclipse_Awards_Composite_Voting.pdf
Shanghai Bobby, 253; Uncaptured, 1.
Beholder, 225; Executiveprivilege, 27; Dreaming of Julia, 1; So Many Ways, 1.
I'll Have Another, 247; Bodemeister , 3; The Lumber Guy, 1; Paynter, 1; Union Rags , 1; Voter Abstention, 1.
Questing, 106; My Miss Aurelia, 102; Believe You Can, 17; Contested, 13; Dance Card, 6; Lady of Shamrock, 5; In Lingerie, 4; Zo Impressive, 1.
Wise Dan, 139; Fort Larned, 109; Little Mike, 4; Game On Dude, 1; Shackleford , 1;
Royal Delta, 231; Groupie Doll, 22; It's Tricky, 1.
Trinniberg, 233; Shackleford , 11; The Lumber Guy, 8; Caixa Electronica, 1; Voter Abstention, 1.
Groupie Doll, 250; Mizdirection, 3; Contested, 1.
Male turf horse
Wise Dan, 170; Little Mike, 78; Point of Entry, 5; No Vote, 1.
Female turf horse
Zagora, 242; Marketing Mix, 5; Lady of Shamrock, 4; Dayatthespa, 2; Voter Abstention, 1.
Pierrot Lunaire, 116; Demonstrative, 99; Arcadius, 1; Divine Fortune, 1; Woodmont, 1; Voter Abstentions, 36.
Horse of the Year
Wise Dan, 194; I'll Have Another, 30; Fort Larned, 12; Royal Delta, 8; Little Mike, 6; Frankel, 1; Groupie Doll, 1; Shanghai Bobby, 1; Voter Abstentions, 1.
Godolphin Racing, 138; Midwest Thoroughbreds, 50; Reddam Racing, 26; John C. Oxley, 13; Morton Fink, 12; Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey, 2; Janis Whitham, 2; Zayat Stables, 2; Repole Racing, 1; Starlight Racing, 1; Voter Abstentions, 1.
Darley, 170; Adena Springs, 25; Morton Fink, 20; Brereton C. Jones, 15; Janis Whitham, 4; Phipps Stable, 3; Harvey Clarke, 2; Fred and William Bradley, 1; William D. Graham, 1; Palides Investments, 1; Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey, 1; Stonestreet Thoroughbreds, 1; Voter Abstentions, 10.
Dale Romans, 119; Todd Pletcher, 87; Bob Baffert, 35; Chad Brown, 2; Bill Mott, 2; Jamie Ness, 2; Doug O'Neill, 2; Steve Asmussen 1; Ian Wilkes, 1; Voter Abstentions, 3.
Ramon Dominguez, 201; John Velazquez, 37; Rosie Napravnik, 4; Russell Baze, 2; Rafael Bejarano, 2; Javier Castellano, 2; Mario Gutierrez, 1; Mike Smith, 1; Voter Abstentions, 3; No Vote, 1.
Jose Montano, 127; Irad Ortiz, Jr., 34; Angel Suarez, 25; Eswan Flores, 16; Wilmer Garcia, 4; Eliska Kubinova, 4; C.J. McMahon, 2; Jose Ortiz, 2; Hugo Sanchez, 2; Nicolas Milford, 1; Voter Abstentions, 37.
Award of Merit
The winner of the Award of Merit, presented to honor outstanding lifetime achievement in the Thoroughbred industry, is Nick Nicholson.
Media Eclipse Awards also are given to recognize members of the media for outstanding coverage of Thoroughbred racing. The 2012 Media Eclipse Awards winners, determined by a judges' panel for each category and previously announced, are:
• Photography - Tom Keyser, Daily Racing Form; "Start of Brooklyn Handicap, July 11, 2012.
• Writing - Feature/Commentary: Ryan Goldberg, Daily Racing Form "Keiber Coa Presses on a Year After Father's Fateful Spill," July 7, 2012.
• Writing - News/Enterprise - Mary Simon, Thoroughbred Times, "Added Obstacle" June 9, 2012.
• Television - Live Racing: NBC Sports, "The Kentucky Derby"; Rob Hyland, Coordinating Producer; May 5, 2012.
• Television - Feature: ESPN, "Notinrwilderstdremz", Heather Lombardo, Producer; October 30, 2012.
• Audio and Multi-Media Internet - Glenye Cain Oakford, Daily Racing Form.com "Zenyatta: Wait for First Foal Combines Science, Art and Anticipation," February 28, 2012.