Saturday, December 13, 2008

Latest Canadian champions announced at 2008 Sovereign Awards

TORONTO, December 12 - The 2008 Sovereign Awards were handed out Friday night at the Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto.

Patrick Husbands

Janine Stianson

Mark Casse

Bear Stables, Ltd.

Adena Springs

Kathie's Colleen

Van Lear Rose

Mine That Bird

Ginger Brew

Not Bourbon

Bear Now


Fatal Bullet

Rahy's Attorney

Callwood Dancer

Fatal Bullet

Matt Waples

Horse Racing Alberta & WhiteIron Productions

Beverley Smith

Peter Gross

Vote Totals

Champion Two-Year-Old Filly

Van Lear Rose 141
Laragh 88
Cawaja Beach 70

Champion Two-Year-Old Colt

Mine That Bird 187
Southern Exchange 83
Utterly Cool 74

Champion Three-Year-Old Filly

Ginger Brew 227
Sugar Bay 120
Authenicat 40

Champion Three-Year-Old Male

Not Bourbon 172
Fatal Bullet 155
Marlang 42

Champion Older Female on the Main Track

Bear Now 220
Akronism 68
Against the Sky 54

Champion Older Male on the Main Track

Marchfield 144
Ice Bear 78
Spaghetti Mouse 50

Champion Female Turf Horse

Callwood Dancer 171
Sealy Hill 159
Sugar Bay 88

Champion Male Turf Horse

Rahy's Attorney 212
Seaside Retreat 112
Marlang 50

Champion Sprinter

Fatal Bullet 238
Disfunction 37
Akronism 33

Horse of the Year

Fatal Bullet 177
Rahy's Attorney 76
Ginger Brew 58

Outstanding Broodmare

Kathie's Colleen 71
May Time 43
Forty Gram 40

Outstanding Apprentice Jockey

Janine Stianson 113
Catherine O'Brien 97
Melanie Pinto 56

Outstanding Jockey

Patrick Husbands 137
James McAleney 121
Eurico Rosa da Silva 55

Outstanding Trainer

Mark Casse 148
Roger Attfield 130
Terry Jordan 47

Outstanding Owner in Canada

Bear Stables 120
Stronach Stables 96
Tucci Stables 58

Outstanding Breeder

Adena Springs 208
Eugene Melnyk 101
Gardiner Farms Limited 55

Sovereign Winner Sketches

Patrick Husbands, Outstanding Jockey

Now a six-time Sovereign Award winner as Canada's top rider, Husbands recorded his fifth Woodbine riding title, second consecutive, as he won 166 races at Woodbine.

The 35-year-old won nine stakes at the Toronto oval, including the Grade 2 Nijinsky with Seaside Retreat, and led the colony in several categories, including: purse earnings ($9,433,918), allowance wins (46), two-year-old wins (72) and route scores (61).

Husbands, who has 1,860 career wins as of December 9, also led the way in win and in-the-money averages, 20.5 per cent and 51.5 per cent, respectively.


WINS: 166
PURSE EARNINGS: $9,433,918

Janine Stianson, Outstanding Apprentice Jockey

Stianson was a force on the Western racing scene, finishing third in the Assiniboia Downs standings, courtesy of 58 wins.

A native of Lethbridge, Alberta, Stianson posted 152 top-three finishes at Assiniboia, along with $486,021 in purse earnings.

Her win average was 17.9 per cent and in-the-money average was 47 per cent.

On May 3, she made history by winning the first four races at the oval, including the opener aboard Cascadian Buck, in the 50th anniversary year at Assiniboia. She partnered Punchmeoutabuck for the fourth consecutive score.

Mark Casse, Outstanding Trainer

Mark Casse enjoyed yet another successful campaign, notching his second consecutive trainer's title courtesy of 75 wins, 17 ahead of his nearest competitor.

The Indianapolis native led the way in numerous categories, including wins, seconds, thirds, purse earnings, two-year-old wins, three-year-old wins and route wins.

Casse also saddled nine stakes winners at Woodbine, including the Grade 2 Autumn Stakes with Marchfield (this year's champion top older male on the main track) and the Grade 2 Nijinsky with Seaside Retreat (first runner-up for top male turf horse).

The 47-year-old has ranked in the top four at the Toronto oval the past eight seasons.

WINS: 75
PURSE EARNINGS: $5,648,751

Bear Stables, Ltd., Outstanding Owner in Canada
Danny Dion's Bear Stables saddled 39 winners from 189 starts in Canada.

South of the border, the outfit made a name for itself, too, taking a pair of Grade 3 events, the Kentucky Cup Sprint with Fatal Bullet, a Sovereign finalist for top sprinter, and the Kentucky Cup Distaff with Bear Now, up for top older female honors.

Bears Artiste won the Alberta Oaks and a Three-year-old Filly Sales Stakes event at Northlands Park. Broken Hearted took the Northlands Oaks.

At Woodbine, Bear Stables finished third in wins, with 25, and also recorded $1,434,772 in purse earnings. The stable boasted a 21 per cent win average and a 53 per cent in-the-money average.

Adena Springs, Outstanding Breeder

This year's Sovereign as Outstanding Breeder represents the fourth consecutive year Frank Stronach's Adena Springs has hoisted the trophy.

It's the eighth overall win in the category for Stronach, whose first breeder Sovereign came in 1984. They also won the award from 1997 to 1999.

From 147 starters, Adena Springs produced 84 winners in 2008. Ginger Brew won the Woodbine Oaks, presented by Budweiser. The filly also took the Calder oaks. Buffalo Man won three stakes, two graded, including the Appleton.

Other notables include Sugar Swirl, a four-time stakes winner and Harlem rocker, who took the Breeders' Stakes, third jewel in the Canadian Triple Crown series.

Van Lear Rose, Champion Two-Year-Old Filly

Kingview Farms homebred Van Lear Rose broke her maiden in her fourth career start, the $126,000 Muskoka Stakes. Trained by Catherine Day Phillips, the Ontario-bred daughter of Stroll doubled up in the Grade 3 Mazarine Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile event she won by a half-length. Van Lear Rose finished sixth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, 5 3/4 lengths in arrears of Stardom Bound.

Mine That Bird, Champion Two-Year-Old Male

Kentucky-bred Mine That Bird compiled an impressive 4-for-5 record while under the tutelage of trainer Dave Cotey. The son of Birdstone racked up stakes victories in the Silver Deputy, the Swynford and the Grey. Sold to Double Eagle Farm in October, Mine That Bird competed in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, finishing 12th.

Ginger Brew, Champion Three-Year-Old Filly

Stronach Stables homebred Ginger Brew finished first in four of seven tries during a campaign which began early in the winter at Gulfstream Park. The daughter of Milwaukee Brew won the $200,000 Calder Oaks on turf, before shipping to Toronto for the Woodbine Oaks, presented by Budweiser. Ginger Brew was at her best for the filly classic, rallying from 10th for a commanding six-length score.

Not Bourbon, Champion Three-Year-Old Male

Charles Fipke homebred Not Bourbon won four of his six starts, including the $1 million Queen's Plate. The son of Not Impossible defeated filly Ginger Brew by a head in the 1 1/4-mile event, giving trainer Roger Attfield his record-tying eighth career Queen's Plate. Successful this year at distances ranging from seven to 10 furlongs, Not Bourbon also won the Queenston, the Plate Trial and the Overskate.

Bear Now, Champion Older Female On the Main Track

Owned by Bear Stables, Bear Now banked $268,260 in 2008. The Tiznow filly, who was a finalist for top three-year-old filly in 2007, scored in three of her seven starts. She proved most dominant in her prep for the Breeders' Cup Distaff, winning the Kentucky Cup Distaff at Turfway by four lengths. The Reade Baker trainee also won the Ontario Matron and the Hill 'N' Dale.

Marchfield, Champion Older Male On the Main Track

Melnyk Racing Stables' Marchfield finished his four-year-old campaign with a strong late rally in the Autumn Stakes. The son of A.P. Indy overcame all sorts of traffic trouble, but quickened late to score by a half-length. The Mark Casse trainee was second in the Durham Cup and With Approval Stakes. He won three of his seven starts, earning $232,223.

Fatal Bullet, Champion Sprinter

Competing exclusively in sprints, Bear Stables' star Fatal Bullet won six of his eight starts and racked up $719,130 in earnings. The Reade Baker trainee won his first added-money event on July 20 in the Bold Venture. The Florida-bred son of Red Bullet also won a listed dash at Presque Isle Downs and the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Sprint at Turfway Park. The gelding completed his strong campaign with a runner-up finish in the Breeders' Cup Sprint, finishing 1 3/4 lengths behind Midnight Lute.

Rahy's Attorney, Champion Male Turf Horse

Rahy's Attorney delivered a shocking verdict in the 2008 Woodbine Mile. The son of Crown Attorney rallied along the inside to defeat Ventura and Just Rushing in the Grade 1 event. The Ian Black trainee, who banked $822,837 this season, also won the Connaught Cup, which was his first career graded stakes score.

Callwood Dancer, Champion Female Turf Horse

Four-year-old chestnut filly Callwood Dancer was both talented and consistent on the turf in 2008. The Roger Attfield trainee won three of her eight starts, including the Grade 2 Nassau Stakes. In the Canadian, she was second to J'ray, just one length behind. In the Grade 1 E.P. Taylor, she stayed on bravely to be second to Folk Opera. Over 'firm' terrain, the Three Chimneys Racing and Harlequin Ranches-owned filly posted three wins and two seconds from five starts.

Fatal Bullet, Horse of the Year

Bear Stables' star Fatal Bullet won six of his eight starts and racked up $719,130 in earnings. The Reade Baker trainee won his first added-money event on July 20 in the Bold Venture. The Florida-bred son of Red Bullet also won a listed dash at Presque Isle Downs and the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Sprint at Turfway Park. The gelding completed his strong campaign with a runner-up finish in the Breeders' Cup Sprint, finishing 1 3/4 lengths behind Midnight Lute.

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