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Kate Hunter

Orfevre Voted Japan's Horse of the Year

Son of Stay Gold received all 285 votes for Best 3-Year-Old Colt.

Orfevre, winner of Japan’s Triple Crown, fell one vote short of being a unanimous choice for the Japan Racing Association’s Horse of the Year title for 2011.

The son of Stay Gold trained by Yasutoshi Ikee for Sunday Racing Co., Ltd. collected all 285 votes for Best 3-Year-Old Colt on the basis of his Triple Crown sweep in the Tokyo Ushun (Japanese Derby), Satsuki Sho (Japanese Two Thousand Guineas), and Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger), all grade I. In addition, the colt defeated older horses in the Arima Kinen (Jpn-I) as he became the only Triple Crown winner to also win that race in the same year.

The honor for Orfevre marked the second straight Horse of the Year title for Sunday Racing, who took top honors with Buena Vista in 2010. According to the JRA, Orfevre will be sent outside Japan for his 4-year-old campaign.

Sunday Racing also was honored with Buena Vista being voted Best Older Filly or Mare and for Best 2-Year-Old Filly with Joie de Vivre.

Japan Racing Association Awards for 2011 (all bred in Japan):
Horse of the Year/Best 3-Year-Old Colt: Orfevre
Best 2-Year-Old Colt: Alfredo
Best 2-Year-Old Filly: Joie de Vivre
Best 3-Year-Old Filly: Aventura
Best Older Colt or Horse: Victoire Pisa
Best Older Filly or Mare: Buena Vista
Best Sprinter or Miler: Curren Chan
Best Dirt Horse: Transcend
Best Steeplechase Horse: Majesty Bio
Best Trainer (Races Won and Training Technique): Katsuhiko Sumii
Best Trainer (Winning Average): Noriyuki Hori
Best Trainer (Money Earned): Yasutoshi Ikee
Best Jockey (Races Won and Money Earned): Yasunari Iwata
Best Jockey (Winning Average): Yuichi Fukunaga