The Texas Thoroughbred Association honored their best of 2002 at their Horse Racing/Breeding Conference and Annual Meeting in Austin the evening of Jan. 18. The winner of the prestigious T.I. "Pops" Harkins award went to Keith and Marilyn Asmussen of Larado, Texas.
The Asmussens' El Primero Ranch is nationally known as a first-class breaking and training facility. The Harkins award is presented to the TTA member whose efforts and contributions to the association and the industry has helped to further the goals of the TTA. The award is not required each year, but is discretionary on the part of the TTA awards committee and board of directors.
Leo's Last Hurrahy, bred by Joe Archer and owned by Kenneth Murphy was named 2002 Texas-bred horse of the year and champion 2-year-old colt. A winner of five of seven starts, Leo's Last Hurrahy (Leo Castelli -- Kate's Hurrahy, by Rahy) earned $326,848, the most of any Texas-bred in 2002. The juvenile won the $150,000 Sam Houston Texan Juvenile, the $150,800 TTA Sales Futurity, and the $125,000 Texas Stallion Stakes at Retama Park.
Other Texas-bred champions:
Champion 2-year-old filly: Parting
(Hay Halo -- Pocasset, by Damascus)
Breeder: Ro Parra
Owner: Preston Stable
Champion 3-year-old filly: Got Koko
(Signal Tap -- Baby North, by Northern Baby)
Breeder: Eileen Hartis
Owners: Aase Headley and Paul Leung
Champion 3-year-old colt/gelding: Fitzroyal
(Desert Royalty -- Alfitz, by Mount Hagen)
Breeder: Robert and Patricia Norman
Owner: Turf Express, Inc.
Champion older filly/mare: Coastalota
(Dixieland Heat -- Costa Del Sol, by L'Heureux)
Breeder/owner: H.L. Southard
Champion older horse: Boots on Sunday
(Pine Bluff -- Richsus, by Jeblar)
Breeder/owner: Wilton E. Scott
Other awards presented:
Breeder of the year: Joe Archer
Leading ATB owner/breeder: Patricia Norman and the estate of Robert Norman
Broodmare of the Year: Eilleen Hartis' Baby North
Freshman sire: Commanchero
Allen Bogan Award: Bob Bork