News ArchivesArchives for February '07
Majestic Son captures Horse of the Year honours
MISSISSAUGA, ON — The 2006 O'Brien Awards, held Saturday, Feb. 3 in Mississauga, saw Ontario Sires Stakes star Majestic Son honoured as Canada's Three-year-old Trotting Colt of the Year and Horse of the Year.
Majestic Son was simply outstanding in 2006, winning an incredible 14 of 19 starts and $1.3 million in earnings while racing solely in Canada. One of his most memorable performances was his resounding victory in the $1 million Canadian Trotting Classic at Mohawk.
Trained and co-owned by Mark Steacy for the Majestic Son Stable of Lansdowne, the son of Angus Hall dominated his Ontario Sires Stakes division, swept the Canadian Breeders Championship and proved he could stand among North America’s best when he swept the elimination and final of the Breeders Crown for three-year-old trotting colts.
Canada's national harness racing awards are named for the late Hall of Famer Joe O'Brien and recognize the horses and people who have made the greatest contribution to Canadian harness racing over the past season. Among the other Ontario Sires Stakes standouts honoured at the annual black-tie gala was Pure Ivory, who was the voters’ unanimous selection in the three-year-old trotting filly category.
The 2006 O’Brien trophy is the second that Pure Ivory has earned for owner Jerry VanBoekel of Bright, owner-trainer Brad Maxwell of Cambridge, owner-breeder Harry Rutherford of Mount Pleasant, and owner-driver Steve Condren of Milton. A champion at two, the daughter of Striking Sahbra maintained her remarkable form in 2006, winning 12 of 19 races and $914,893. In addition to the Ontario Sires Stakes Super Final and two Gold Finals, Pure Ivory captured the Canadian Breeders Championship, the Elegantimage Consolation and the Simcoe, in which she trotted to a career record of 1:53.1.
For the second consecutive year, Paula Wellwood trained a two-year-old trotting colt to Canadian harness racing’s highest honour. Angus Hall son Laddie captured six of 10 starts and almost $430,000 for Wellwood Stables Inc. of Cambridge. Among the colt’s triumphs were the Champlain Stakes and the elimination and final of the William Wellwood Memorial.
Ontario Sires Stakes division champion Luck Of Michelle earned an O’Brien as Canada’s Two-year-old Pacing Filly of the Year. After a world record mile at Flamboro Downs on June 24, in her first start of the season, the talented Camluck miss posted a seven-race win streak that extended to the Eternal Camnation Stake at Mohawk in August. Trainer John Pentland of Dorchester had the Camluck daughter fit and sharp for every one of her 13 races as she finished off the board only once and banked close to $690,000 in earnings. Natalie Pentland of Dorchester and Karen Carroll of Shedden share ownership on the gifted Luck Of Michelle.
Clay and Scott Horner's Domitian Hanover was named Canada's Two-year-old Pacing Colt of the Year. The Camluck colt was at the top of his game in Ontario Sires Stakes events and the highlight of his $340,000 season came in winning the OSS Super Final at Woodbine in a season's best 1:52.3 for trainer James "Friday" Dean.
The Horner-Dean combination earned their second O'Brien trophy of the evening with three-year-old pacing colt Doonbeg. Challenging North America's top sophomore colts all season long, the diminutive Camluck colt posted eight wins and $590,000 in earnings for owner-breeders Clay and Scott Horner of Toronto and Torlando Farms of Orlando, FL. In addition to his spectacular Super Final victory, the James “Friday” Dean trainee also captured an elimination of the North America Cup, the Canadian Breeders Championship and three Gold Finals.
The incomparable Peaceful Way, the richest Ontario bred of all-time, collected her fourth straight O'Brien Award and second title in the Older Trotting Mare category. The Angus Hall mare won five of 11 races and $775,125 last season with her most impressive victory coming in the prestigious Maple Leaf Trot, in which she trotted to a convincing three and three-quarter length win over Stiletto and surpassed $3 million in career earnings. Dave Tingley of Guelph co-owns and conditions Peaceful Way for Goin My Way Stable of Holland, PA, Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld and Sam Goldband of Toronto and breeder Angie Stiller of Arva.
The complete list of Ontario sired winners from the 2006 O'Brien Awards is as follows:
Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly
Luck Of Michelle
Owned by Karen E. Carroll, Shedden, ON & Natalie R. Pentland, Dorchester, ON
Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt
Owned by Clay Harland Horner & Scott Horner, Toronto, ON
Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt
Owned by Clay Harland Horner, Toronto, ON, Torlando Farms Inc., Orlando, FL & Scott Horner, Toronto, ON
Two-Year-Old Trotting Colt
Owned by Wellwood Stables Inc., Cambridge, ON
Three-Year-Old Trotting Filly
Owned by Jerry VanBoekel, Bright, ON, Harry Rutherford, Mt Pleasant, ON, Steve Condren, Milton, ON & Bradley Maxwell, Cambridge, ON
Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt
Owned by Majestic Son Stable, Lansdowne, ON
Older Trotting Mare
Owned by Goin My Way Stable, Holland, PA, Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld, Sam Goldband, Toronto, ON, David Tingley, Guelph, ON & Angie Stiller, Arva, ON
HORSE OF THE YEAR
Owned by the Majestic Son Stable of Lansdowne, ON