News ArchivesArchives for June '03
Camluck elected to Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame
MISSISSAUGA, ON — On August 28 leading Ontario Sires Stakes stallion Camluck will be inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame at Woodbine Racetrack.
Camluck took his first steps down the Hall of Fame path as a three-year-old when he captured several stakes races, including the Provincial Cup. Trained by Robert McIntosh, the Cam Fella son raised his game to a new level at four, capturing the Breeders Crown Final, and at five, when he recorded a 1:48.4 mile in a time trial at Lexington’s famed Red Mile.
“As a two-year-old he had OCD (Osteochondritis dessicans) and didn’t race,” recalls Windsor resident McIntosh. “To come back at three and go from maidens to winning the Provincial Cup was quite an accomplishment.
“I think he came back better every year. He was a typical Most Happy Fella-bred horse, a tough battler week after week,” adds the veteran trainer, who will be inducted into the United States Harness Racing Hall of Fame this summer.
Camluck retired at the conclusion of his five-year-old season with 26 wins and just over $1 million in earnings. After an attempt to sell the talented pacer fell through, McIntosh and his partners in the New Destiny Stable of Windsor and their co-owner Al McIntosh Holdings Inc. of Leamington, opted to keep the colt and made a deal to stand him at Seelster Farms in Lucan.
“We had thoughts of selling him, but luckily the guy never showed up with the cheque. It was that close,” says McIntosh. “I talked to Chris Van Bussel of Seelster Farms and we made a handshake agreement and he drew us up a contract.”
That contract kicked off a second career that, in just one decade, has firmly established Camluck as one of the premiere stallions ever to stand in Ontario. His progeny have already earned over $57 million, among them last year’s O’Brien award winning two-year-old pacing colt Sir Luck, the first Ontario-sired freshman to surpass the million dollar mark in earnings.
Tops in the Ontario Sires Stakes program for the last three years, Camluck also led North American pacing sires in 2002 in the three-year-old category and in 2001 in the two, three and aged categories.
“My only regret is that Chris (Van Bussel) is not here to see it,” says McIntosh of his colleague and friend who passed away suddenly last December. “He was one of the biggest supporters to getting the horse there (the Hall of Fame).”
McIntosh and his partners will join the Van Bussel family at Woodbine Racetrack on Thursday, Aug. 28 for the induction ceremony, which will also honour Thoroughbreds Carotene and He’s A Smoothie.
The individuals being inducted into the Hall of Fame are Thoroughbred trainer Roy Johnson of Calgary, AB, Thoroughbred breeder Frank J. Selke and Cote-St-Luc, QC native Murray Brown, public relations director for Hanover Shoe Farms, the largest Standardbred nursery in the world.
Also being honoured is the late James Proudfoot, the multi-award winning journalist for The Toronto Star, whose coverage of horse racing earned him considerable recognition during his 49-year career as a columnist and feature magazine writer.