Eclipse Awards

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Eclipse Award: Afleet Alex, 3-Year-Old Male

All the human drama that surrounded Afleet Alex -- the charity work through Alex's Lemonade Stand; the colt having to be fed milk from a Coors Lite bottle as a foal by breeder John Martin Silvertand's 9-year-old daughter; Silvertand using Alex's heroics as inspiration in his battle with terminal cancer; and the Afleet Alex marketing items distributed by owners Cash is King Stable and trainer Tim Ritchey at children's hospitals -- will have to wait for the storytellers and book writers.

Eclipse Award: Ashado, Older Female

You have to go back 20 years to find a distaffer who won an Eclipse Award at three and came back the following year to win the older female title as well. Ashado is in elite company.

Breeding Better Voters

By Ray Paulick - The selection process for the Eclipse Awards has remained relatively unchanged since 1971, when the awards program and annual dinner were inaugurated by the Thoroughbred Racing Associations to singularly honor horse racing's champions.

Special Eclipse Award to Afleet Alex's Owners

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Monday that Cash is King Racing Stable -- owner of dual classic winner Afleet Alex -- has been honored with the Special Eclipse Award. The Special Eclipse is presented to "honor outstanding individual achievements in, or contributions to, the sport of Thoroughbred racing."

Reporter Janet Patton Wins Second Eclipse

  • News

Reporter Janet Patton has won the 2005 Media Eclipse Award for writing in the feature or enterprise category for her series of articles in the Lexington Herald-Leader on racetrack workers and compensation. This is the second Eclipse Award for Patton, an equine and agricultural business writer for the Herald-Leader since 1998.

Human, Equine Eclipse Finalists Announced

With the exception of Horse of the Year, three finalists in each category for Eclipse Awards were announced Thursday by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, National Turf Writers Association, and Daily Racing Form, the three organizations that vote for year-end honors.

NBC Sports Honored With Two Eclipse Awards

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Wednesday that NBC Sports has won the Eclipse Award for National Television – Live Racing for its production of the 2005 Preakness Stakes (gr. I) and has also won the Eclipse Award for National Television – Features for its segment on the people behind Afleet Alex during its 2005 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) telecast.

Sirius, WAVE 3 TV Win Media Eclipse Awards

  • News

Sirius Satellite Radio has won the Media Eclipse Award in the Audio and Multi-Media Internet category for live coverage of the 2005 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, while WAVE 3 TV in Louisville has won the Media Eclipse Award for Local Television for its pre- and post-race coverage of the 2005 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

That's Show Biz

By Evan Hammonds -- A pat on the back goes to all involved at the National Thoroughbred Racing Association for putting together a smooth and slick presentation of the 34th Eclipse Awards Jan. 24. A special nod should be given to Debbie Blair, the event coordinator and vice president of customer service at NTRA/Breeders' Cup.

Ramsey Issues Statement on Fine, Suspension

Owner Ken Ramsey, who was fined $25,000 and suspended for seven days by the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority for improperly attempting to influence another owner to scratch a horse at Turfway Park, issued a statement Jan. 24 regarding the situation.

Special Eclipse Award: Dale Baird

In 1996, Dale Baird became the first trainer in history to win 7,000 races. In 1999, he became the first to reach 8,000. And in 2004, yes, he made it to 9,000. That alone makes Baird special, and a deserving winner of a Special Eclipse Award.

2004 Eclipse 3YO Male: Smarty Jones

It took a while for it to sink in, but the magnitude of Smarty Jones' accomplishments in 2004 finally hit trainer John Servis like a ton of bricks. "Gosh, I won the Kentucky Derby!" he said to himself while driving recently with jockey Stewart Elliott.

2004 Eclipse 2YO Male: Declan's Moon

Jay Em Ess Stable shelled out $125,000 for Declan's Moon at the 2003 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic September yearling sale. A year and a few months later, the gelding has banked $507,300, and the stable has the recipient of the Eclipse Award in the 2-year-old male category.

2004 Eclipse 2YO Female: Sweet Catomine

At the five-sixteenths pole in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), Sweet Catomine was blocked and in need of racing room. But having to check was no big deal for the daughter of Storm Cat. Corey Nakatani steered her out of harm's way and she rolled by the other 11 members of the field as the crowd at Lone Star Park cheered her on.

2004 Eclipse 3YO Female: Ashado

Ashado is the kind of horse that an owner and trainer dream about: Tough, consistent, and brilliant enough to compete at racing's highest level. Her command over the 3-year-old filly division throughout 2004 and her tough-as-nails victory against older fillies and mares in the Breeders' Cup Distaff - Presented by Nextel (gr. I) are clear reasons she's the recipient of an Eclipse Award.

2004 Eclipse Owner: Ken & Sarah Ramsey

The year 2004 turned out to be the type of year for Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey that the couple could only dream about a few years back. In their first appearance as Eclipse Award finalists, they won the outstanding owner trophy, and one of their horses, Kitten's Joy, won an Eclipse Award for best turf male.

2004 Eclipse Older Female: Azeri

Hers is a familiar name in these pages, and her star has not diminished over time. Azeri, 2002 Horse of the Year and champion older mare in 2002 and 2003, has now made it a three-peat in that category. The 2004 Eclipse puts North America's all-time leading money earner for fillies and mares on her own plateau--ahead of Paseana (1992, 1993), Bayakoa (1989, 1990), and Susan's Girl (1973, 1975), the only other two-time Eclipse Award-winning older mares.

2004 Eclipse Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Todd Pletcher, who was third in Eclipse Award balloting in 2003 after finishing the year in the No. 2 spot by earnings, ended the 2004 season atop the earnings list. That was good enough for him to cop an Eclipse Award for outstanding trainer.

2004 Eclipse Sprinter: Speightstown

In the days leading up to the Oct. 30 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, trainer Todd Pletcher would only say that Speightstown would have to win the six-furlong Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) to be considered divisional champion. Speightstown won the race and now has garnered champion sprinter honors. Pletcher took home the Eclipse Award for outstanding trainer.

2004 Eclipse Turf Male: Kitten's Joy

Ken Ramsey wants to win the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) more than any other race, and he tried to make Kitten's Joy a Derby horse. He didn't achieve his goal with the son of El Prado, but the flashy chestnut colt's development into a turf star was a very good consolation prize.

2004 Eclipse Turf Female: Ouija Board

Unaided by the occult, and with no hovering, all-seeing orb to guide the way, it was Great Britain's Ouija Board herself who foretold a near-certain future victory in the VO5 Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) for all eyes to behold.

2004 Eclipse Steeplechaser: Hirapour

Stand and deliver. That's what Hirapour needed to do to have a chance at the 2004 steeplechase Eclipse Award. He starred in the spring, skipped the summer, and lost a tight Breeders' Cup Steeplechase (NSA-I) decision to McDynamo in October.

Gill to Continue Quest for Leading Owner Honors

After he received the trophy Jan. 8 as leading owner in Maryland, Michael Gill issued a challenge to the racing world: If he isn't voted outstanding owner for 2004, he'll be even more determined to win the title in 2005.

Oaklawn, Cella to Receive Eclipse Award of Merit

  • News

Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., which celebrated 100 years of operation in 2004, and the Cella family, which has privately owned the track all that time, has been awarded the Eclipse Award of Merit, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 6.

Eclipse Award Finalists: Some Familiar Names, Some Sure Things

The Eclipse Award finalists, announced Jan. 5, reveal many familiar names in the human categories, with several big-name horses appearing in more than one category. Although most of the winners look like sure things, there are still some potential drag-out battles in the Sprint and 4-Year-Old and Up Female categories.

Premier Radio Wins Eclipse Award for Belmont Coverage

  • News

Premier Radio Networks won the Media Eclipse Award in the audio and multi-media Internet category for its live coverage of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.

WAVE TV Wins Eclipse Award for Derby Coverage

  • News

WAVE 3 in Louisville, Ky., won the Media Eclipse Award for local television for its pre-and post-race coverage surrounding last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I), the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.

ESPN Wins Eclipse Award for 'Smarty' Documentary

  • News

ESPN has won the Eclipse Award for National Television – Features for its documentary "Smarty Jones: America's Horse," which aired on Oct. 31, 2004, on ESPN and ESPN HD, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.

NBC Sports Wins Eclipse Award for Belmont Show

  • News

NBC Sports won the Eclipse Award for National Television – Live Racing for its production of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.

TVG to Present Live Coverage of Eclipse Awards

TVG will break new ground when it presents a live telecast of the 34th annual Eclipse Awards, Monday, Jan. 24 from 6-10 p.m. PT. The network's telecast, from the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles, marks the first time horseracing's "Oscars" will be presented live on TV.

Eclipse Awards 2005 Headed to California

  • News

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) will hold the 34th annual Eclipse Awards ceremony, honoring Thoroughbred racing's divisional Champions for 2004, on Jan. 24, 2005, at the Regent Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.

Los Angeles to Host 2005 Eclipse Awards Ceremony

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced that the 34th annual Eclipse Awards ceremony will be held Jan. 24, 2005, at the Regent Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills, Calif.

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