Woodbine begins its long meet April 2 with a focus on change, a strong purse structure and stakes schedule, and hope its expansion project gets off the ground.
With a view to the changing economy, the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario Division) has restructured fees for its annual Canadian-bred yearling sale.
Matthews Keep, a 26-year-old son of Summing, was euthanized Feb. 20 at Nanci Cook's Skywatcher Farm near Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, because of age related health issues.
Historic Windfields Farm, breeder of 361 stakes winners, will hold a liquidation sale under the auspices of auctioneer Bob Dickenson at the Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, farm Saturday, March 6.
Jockey Chantal Sutherland, who won two grade II stakes over the Jan. 16-17 weekend at Santa Anita, is one of three finalists for a Sovereign Award as Canada's outstanding jockey for 2009.
Billy Allen, who raced in 10 different countries, will stand in 2010 at Dean and Debbie Walkowski's Walkowski's Thoroughbreds near Brandon, Manitoba, Canada.
Serenading, who won the Nov. 26 Falls City Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs, has been retired from racing.
Multiple graded stakes winner Rebellion, second in last year's TVG Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile, will enter stud in 2010 at Norse Ridge Farm in King Township, Ontario, Canada.
Due to the ongoing investigation into equine piroplasmosis in Texas, Canada has restricted the importation of horses from that state.
Breeders' Cup management is working on a five- to 10-year rotation of racetracks to serve as host sites for the World Championships.
English and Irish champion Swain will stand in 2010 at Chris Blake's Ascot Stud near Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada.
Marked by a severe 22.9% decrease in average price, the annual selected Canadian-bred yearling sale, hosted by the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario division) at the Woodbine racetrack sales pavilion on Sept. 8 was yet another North American auction that was a victim of a struggling economy.
The Ontario division of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (CTHS) has 464 horses cataloged for its Canadian-bred yearling auction. The select session is scheduled for Sept. 8 and the open session for Sept. 12 at the Woodbine Sales Pavilion at Woodbine racetrack near Toronto.
Gerald Bennett, who 33 years ago won with the first horse he ever saddled at old Greenwood Race Track in Toronto, registered the 3,000th victory of his career Aug. 28 when Shegoestoeleven won in a photo finish in the eighth race at Presque Isle Downs.
Beau Genius, who topped the $2-million mark in progeny earnings eight consecutive years, has been pensioned because of declining fertility at Donald and Karen Cohn's Ballena Vista Farm near Ramona, Calif.
The Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario Division) honored 2008 Ontario-bred champions at its annual awards June 12 at the Lionhead Golf & Country Club in Brampton, Ontario.
Field Commission, a four-time winner in 2008, made his second start of the season a winning one in the $150,000 Vigil Stakes (Can-III) at Woodbine May 18.
Citronnade, a homebred grade I winner for Frank Stronach's Stronach Stables, was euthanized April 1 following colic surgery.
The Ontario division of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society announced the release of its 2009 Thoroughbred Improvement Program, featuring $9.6 million in awards, bonuses, breeding incentives, and added purse money.
Van Lear Rose, Canada's 2008 champion 2-year-old filly, will be sidelined for the year due to a suspensory injury.
- By Tom LaMarra
Fort Erie Race Track & Slots in Ontario, Canada, will offer live Thoroughbred racing this year, and the local horsemen's group is asking for support from owners and trainers.
For the first time, Washington-breds and British Columbia-breds will compete against each other in the BC Cup at Hastings Racecourse and the Washington Cup at Emerald Downs. Three races at each track have been opened to include horses bred in Washington and British Columbia, Canada.
Sligo Bay, Florida's fourth-leading second-crop sire in 2008, will be relocated to Gardiner Farms near Caledon East, Ontario, Canada.
Gold Legend, an 18-year-old half-brother to Dayjur (by Seattle Slew), will stand the 2009 season at Pierre Esquirol's Esquirol Farms in Alberta, Canada for $2,500 (Canadian funds).
Danny Dion's Bear Stables named Canada's owner of the year - his Fatal Bullet Horse of the Year at Dec. 12 Sovereign Awards.
The Jockey Club of Canada has announced the finalists for this year's Sovereign Awards. Winners will be announced at the 34th Annual Sovereign Awards ceremonies at the Four Seasons Hotel in Ontario, Canada Dec. 12.
War Cry, a $2.7-million yearling and a half-brother to grade II winner and prominent sire E Dubai (by Mr. Prospector) and grade I winner and European champion producer No Matter What (by Nureyev), will stand the 2009 season for $2,500 at Richard Moylen's Hunter View Farm near Caledon, Ontario, Canada.
Canadian stallions Mazel Trick and Regal Intention died in late October at Canmor Farms near Aldergrove, British Columbia.
The Ontario division of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (CTHS) has cataloged 187 horses for its winter mixed sale, which will be held Nov. 29 at the Woodbine in Toronto. The auction will start at 2 p.m. (EST).
Four days after the select session of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario division) yearling sale realized a small dip in average price, the preferred session boasted a 3% increase in average despite a large increase in the number of yearlings not sold and a drop in median price.
The Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society yearling sale is hoping to get a boost from new bonuses offered at Woodbine to Ontario-bred runners. The purse bonuses are attracting new buyers to the sale, like top U.S. trainer Steve Asmussen.
Robert Tiller, Louis Cauz, Wilderness Road, and Smart Strike are inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame Aug. 28.
Hastings Racecourse in British Columbia has instituted a commission reduction on show wagers.
Grade I winner and Canadian champion Perfect Soul came through with his first winner July 26.
- By Tom LaMarra
Betfair, the Great Britain-based online betting exchange, continues to negotiate with officials in the United States and is inching closer to a deal by which it would compensate horsemen for use of their product.
Pari-mutuel handle took a hit but purses gained a bit in the second quarter of 2008, according to the "Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators" for United States and Canadian pari-mutuel wagering on U.S. Thoroughbred racing.
The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association announced July 9 that it will conduct a new owner seminar July 18 at Woodbine in Canada.
Windfields Farm, birthplace of the great Canadian-bred Northern Dancer, will cease to operate as a commercial venture and will revert to being a family operation.
Eugene Melnyk's homebred Sterwins, longshot winner of the April 20 Ben Ali Stakes (gr. III) at Keeneland last time out, seeks the second graded score of his career when he faces Bahadur Cheema's True Metropolitan and four other runners in the $150,000 Eclipse Stakes (gr. III) at Woodbine June 7.
Northlands Park in Alberta, Canada, will host three riders from Legends on Tour during the track's historic Canadian Derby weekend, it was announced June 4.
- By Ryan Conley
Some bettors are frustrated with the current dispute between horsemen groups, racetracks, and advance deposit wagering companies over revenue sharing. They feel they've been neglected in the process, and threaten to take their wagering dollars elsewhere.
- By Tom LaMarra
Two exhibition races for Standardbred pacers were held at Keeneland the afternoon of May 21 to give the principals in a racetrack under construction in Alberta, Canada, an idea as to whether a synthetic surface can be used for both breeds.
The Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame announced its 2008 inductees May 20. Four horses and four people will be honored at a Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Mississauga Convention Centre Aug. 28.
The Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (Ontario Division) unveiled the 2008 Thoroughbred Improvement Program (TIP), following approval of the Ontario Racing Commission. Valued at $9.6 million, the TIP includes increases in breeders award distributions, overnight stakes races, and the introduction of a new OSS stakes award program.
Canadian drug maker Biovail Corp., which was formerly headed by prominent Thoroughbred owner-breeder Eugene Melnyk, agreed March 24 to pay a $10-million fine to resolve federal regulators' charges of civil accounting fraud and deceiving investors and analysts.
Ascot Knight, one of Canada's top stallions for a number of years, was euthanized Feb. 8 due to declining health. He was 24. He had been pensioned from stallion duty in January at the Taylor family's Windfields Farm near Oshawa, Ontario, Canada. In 2007, he covered 13 mares. He is buried in the cemetery with such farm greats as Windfields, Northern Dancer, and Vice Regent.
The Breeders' Cup Challenge, a series of automatic qualifying races for the Breeders' Cup World Championships, will be expanded from 24 races to a minimum of 49 races at 12 of North America's premier racetracks in 2008, Breeders' Cup announced Feb. 14.
Trainer Steve Asmussen will have a division at Woodbine for the first time when the Toronto-area track opens its 167-day meet April 5.
- By Tom LaMarra
The board of directors of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association of Ontario has unanimously approved the extension of its current contract with Woodbine Entertainment Group for an additional three years, the organization announced Jan. 18.
Tammy Samuel-Balaz, whose family bred and raced champion Dance Smartly and leading sire Smart Strike, among numerous others, under their Sam-Son banner, died Jan. 5 in Canada after battling cancer. She was 47.
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