Fair Grounds Race Course used the spotlight on Louisiana-breds on Louisiana Champions Day to honor the recently retired Happy Ticket, who became the highest earning state-bred in history last month.Fair Grounds president Randy Soth presented Happy Ticket's owner, Stewart Madison, and her trainer, Andrew Leggio Jr., with a plaque honoring the national attention she brought to Louisiana-bred horses.In addition, Fair Grounds announced that the race for state-bred 3-year-old fillies on March 3 has been re-named the Happy Ticket Stakes.
The connections weren't the only ones rewarded. Two 50-pound bags – one with peppermints and the other with carrots – are on their way to Happy Ticket's new home at Glencrest Farm in Midway, Ky.Madison retired Happy Ticket two weeks ago with 12 wins from 20 starts, including the Ballerina (gr. I) in August 2005 at Saratoga, and earnings of $1,688,838. She surpassed the decade-long record for lifetime earnings for a Louisiana-bred previously held by Scott's Scoundrel.