Expanded distribution of Woodbine Entertainment Group's Thoroughbred and harness races and larger fields generated by higher purses helped increase the company's total handle for the year by 11.1%. The all sources handle for Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing was a record $1.36 billion.
Our Dani, the dam of grade I winner You, topped the second session of Keeneland's January horses of all ages sale when her price soared to $625,000 on Tuesday.
The race to determine the leading second-crop sire of 2001 came down to a photo finish between Maria's Mon and Unbridled's Song. At the wire, it was Maria's Mon edging Unbridled's Song by a mere $51,566 to take the title.
For the second time in four years, the Mockingbird Farm team came up with the leading North American freshman sire. They won't make it three in 2002. Well, if they do, it won't be the same team.
Mr. Prospector continued his stranglehold on the leading broodmare sire list, racking up his fifth title in a row. And despite the stallion's death in 1999 at the age of 29, he figures to keep a hammerlock on the competition for years to come. At his current pace, there is little reason to believe he can't top the list for another five years.
The rise of Thunder Gulch from champion 3-year-old male to leading sire has been meteoric to say the least. Just six years removed from a championship season as North America's top sophomore, and with just three crops of racing age, the son of Gulch has made it to the apex of the sire charts.
The Calder meet that began in May--back when Sept. 11 was just another day on the calendar--came to a rousing conclusion during its extended closing weekend with five graded stakes, or exactly the same amount contested during the meet's first 166 days. Four of the stakes were on its Dec. 29 Grand Slam II card, the 32nd consecutive Saturday of racing at the Miami oval.
- By Scott Davis
Keeneland Association announced Tuesday that Ben Huffman has been appointed racing secretary.
In a last-minute move on Tuesday, outgoing New Jersey acting Gov. Don DiFrancesco vetoed and slashed a purse supplement bill which would have given the horse racing industry $18 million.
Tampa Bay Downs has signed a reciprocal simulcast deal with Gulfstream Park even though horsemen's groups outside Florida are trying to block distribution of the Tampa track's signal. Horsemen in Texas and Kentucky are battling with Tampa Bay Downs over what they see as mistreatment of the local horsemen's group.
Japan Cup (Jpn-I) winner Jungle Pocket was voted Horse of the Year in Japan for 2001, a year in which wagering dropped for the fourth consecutive year and is at its lowest level in a decade.
Nigel Elwes announced Tuesday, January 8, that he would "consider his position" as chairman of the Thoroughbred Breeders' Association if the breeders' trade body does not retain its seat on the British Horseracing Board after a review of the structure of racing's governing body is complete.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association is expected this week to fully acquire EquiSource, a corporation that managed group purchasing for the association. Once the deal is closed, a new organization called NTRA Purchasing will be formed.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 8 that ESPN Classic has won the Eclipse Award for National Television -- Features category with its "SportsCentury: Top 50 and Beyond" profile of Hall of Fame jockey Willie Shoemaker.
Grade I winner Greenwood Lake and 5-year-old River Women opened the year with a filly born at Robert Slack's Stoneriggs Farm near Morriston, Fla.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club has upheld, but amended, a suspension levied American jockey Corey Nakatani for his ride aboard Forbidden Apple in a fifth-place finish in the Hong Kong Mile (HK-I) on December 16.
By Steve Haskin -- There are 2,904 hours until the Kentucky Derby. By the time I finish writing this, there will be 2,903. I figure approximately 650 of those hours will be spent sleeping, leaving 2,253 hours to think about the Derby.
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick -- Good things happened to the horse industry in Washington the same year it spent more on lobbying.
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