Noosa Beach and jockey Ricky Frazier

Noosa Beach and jockey Ricky Frazier

Emerald Downs

Noosa Beach, Jockey Frazier to Retire Jointly

Two of Emerald Downs' all-time greats to be honored with ceremony July 3.

Two of the all-time greats at Emerald DownsNoosa Beach and jockey Ricky Frazierwill be honored in a joint retirement ceremony at the Seattle-area track July 3.

Noosa Beach, who was on the comeback trail until sustaining a minor ankle injury recently, will parade one last time before his numerous fans. Afterward the 7-year-old gelding will join Frazier, his regular rider in 2010 before sustaining a head injury in a fall, with a final visit to the Emerald Downs winner's circle.

Frazier, who rode Noosa Beach to victory in the 2010 Longacres Miles (gr. III), will autograph full color posters of the dark bay that will given away free to the first 7,500 fans through the gates.

The track's all-time leader with 11 stakes wins, Noosa Beach was retired by trainer Doris Harwood and owner Jeff Harwood. The big gelding pretty much rewrote the Emerald Downs record book while winning consecutive Horse of the Meeting titles in 2010 and 2011. At the pinnacle of his career, Noosa Beach won six consecutive stakes races, including a dominant victory over Jersey Town  in the 2010 Longacres Mile.

He retired with 14 wins, four seconds, and two thirds from 22 lifetimes races with earnings of $524,472.

"There's hardly words to describe what Noosa Beach has meant to both Jeff and myself," said Doris Harwood, who bred the son of Harbor the Gold out of the Basket Weave mare Julia Rose in Washington with her husband. "His nickname at the barn was Elvis, and for two years he was the king."

Frazier is officially hanging up his riding boots following a 30-year career in which he rode 3,469 winners, including 886 wins and five riding titles at Emerald Downs. The 48-year-old Arkansan was unable to get medical clearance after suffering a severe head injury at the 2010 Fresno County Fair meeting in California.

"I didn't really want to retire but had to face the fact that it's time," Frazier said. "My quality of life is fine, but apparently this type of injury takes time. Time to get it behind me, focus on the next chapter.

"Noosa Beach wasn't ready to retire either, but the fact that we get to do it together is great."

First post is 4:30 p.m. on July 3, with the annual Fireworks Spectacular scheduled following the races.

Noosa Beach raced only once after finishing second to Awesome Gem in the 2011 Longacres Mile, running fourth in the Governors Handicap May 20, 2012. The Harwoods decided to give him the rest of 2012 off following an injury sustained when he flipped in the gate prior to his subsequent start, the Budweiser Handicap. The mishap necessitated his scratch.

He had posted six workouts at Emerald Downs since resuming training in April, most recently breezing five furlongs May 24 in 1:00 4/5.

Noosa Beach won stakes in four consecutive seasons beginning at age 2. In winning the six-furlong Seattle Handicap in 2010, he was clocked in 1:07 flat. 

Frazier retires with lifetime purse earnings of more than $42.2 million from 25,257 mounts.