Gate-to-Wire Newsletter
News from the WTBOA
May 6, 2011 

 Tattoo your young horses early in case there are corrections needed on their registration papers, as this could cause a delay in a race entry. 
CLICK HERE for Stallion List
CLICK HERE for Bid Sheet 
for Stallions of 2011 




Saturdays & Sundays, April 23 & 24, April 30 & May 1, May 7 & 8*


Kennewick, WA

(509) 582-5434, race office


Saturday, May 7, 2011


Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY

(502) 636-4400; www.churchilldowns.com


Monday, May 16, 2011


Nomination Form

Fees and Deadlines

(253) 288-7896; [email protected]


Saturday, May 21, 2011


Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, MD

(410) 542-9400; www.pimlico.com


Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Entry Form

(253) 288-7896; [email protected]


Saturday, June 11, 2011


Belmont Park, Elmont, NY

(516) 488-6000; www.nyra.com/index_belmont.html


Friday, June 17, 2011


(for accepted yearlings)

(253) 288-7896; [email protected]


Tuesday, July 5, 2011


Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Thursday, July 7, 2011


Friday, July 8 - Sunday, July 10, 2011


For more information, (253) 288-7878; [email protected]; www.washingtonthoroughbred.com


Wednesday, August 24, 2011


(253) 288-7896; [email protected]




Dennis Manning Training Center. Breaking, Training, Sales Prep. Beautiful facility with lots of outside hill country. Located near Walla Walla. (702) 370-6438.


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WTBOA Mission Statement
The Washington Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Association seeks to unite and represent those who are interested in breeding, owning, racing and improving Thoroughbreds in the state of Washington and the Northwest. To generate positive growth, interest and appreciation of Washington Thoroughbreds, the WTBOA is dedicated and committed to education, communication and collaboration, as well as marketing and promoting the nobility, history and benefits of Thoroughbreds.

There's Still Time to Enter!


Summer Yearling Nominations
Due Monday, May 16
Mixed Sale Entries
Due Tuesday, May 31
New this year!

The WTBOA Sales Graduate Incentive Program

In 2011 at Emerald Downs, the owner of any WTBOA-sold two-year-old (a 2009 WTBOA weanling or 2010 WTBOA yearling for which a commission was paid - sold or RNA) who wins a two-year-old enhanced maiden special weight race at Emerald Downs, will receive a $1,000 bonus. Also to be offered for 2011 will be a $20,000 allowance race for two-year-old WTBOA sales graduates (date TBD).

CLICK HERE for Summer Yearling Nomination Form
CLICK HERE for Mixed Sale Session Entry Form
CLICK HERE for Fees & Deadlines


Washington-connected Horses Featured in Weekend Derby Card at Churchill Downs

  Beginning on Kentucky Oaks (G1) Friday, May 6, there are four runners with Washington connections competing among the six stakes offered at Churchill Downs.

  Mark Dedomenico and partners 2010 champion Blind Luck is among the nine fillies and mares entered in the 1 1/16-mile $300,000 La Troienne Stakes (G3), which will go off at around 10:30 a.m. pacific time. The $100,000 Eight Belles Stakes (G3) for three-year-old fillies going seven furlongs, which will run at about 12 noon contains 2010 WTBOA sales graduate and thrice stakes-placed Formal Plan, who was bred by Dr. Jack and Claire Lein's Willow Creek Farm. [Blind Luck stumbled at the break and nearly went down, but regained her composure to win by a neck over Unrivaled Belle in a final time of 1:42.93.]

  Awesome Gem, who finished second in the 2009 Longacres Mile (G3) to Assessment, is among the field of 11 older runners taking to the track for the $300,000 Alysheba Stakes (G3), a 1 1/16-mile race which is scheduled to go off just before 1:00 p.m. our time.

  And finally, in the day's feature $1-million Kentucky Oaks, which was won by Blind Luck last year, Ashland Stakes (G1) winner Lilacs and Lace faces a dozen other fillies to wear the lilies. The daughter of Flower Alley, who races for James Covello, Judy Hicks and Kathryn Nikkel, received her early training at Dedomenico's Pegasus Thoroughbreds in Redmond. The race is scheduled to go off at approximately 2:45 p.m.

  Among the races featured on Derby Day undercard are the Grade 2 $300,000 Churchill Downs Stakes - which was won by Washington champion Atta Boy Roy in 2010 - and the $200,000 Churchill Distaff Turf Mile Stakes. The Distaff Turf, which is scheduled to go off at 12 noon pacific time, features a field of 11 older fillies and mares and includes multiple stakes winner Upperline, a daughter of Maria's Mon owned in partnership by Jack and Theresa Hodge's Oakcrest Farm. Approximately 52 minutes later, WTBOA sales graduate Smiling Tiger, who races for Phillip Lebherz and Alan Klein, will head out with 11 other sprinters for the seven furlong Churchill Downs Stakes. Two Washington stallion stallions have run well in past Churchill Downs Stakes. Trickey Trevor won the 2006 version and Liberty Gold finished second in the 1999 edition of the sprint stakes.

  In other weekend stakes, Mark Dedomenico and partners' Honour the Deputy faces off with four others in the $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap (G2), a 1 1/16-mile event at Hollywood Park on Saturday with a noon post time. Friendship Stables, Longshot Racing and Craig and Stanley Fredickson's 2010 Washington two-year-old champion Couldabenthewhisky will make his sophomore debut in the $50,000 Jim Coleman Province Stakes at Hastings Racecourse on Saturday. He will face eight others in the 6 1/2-furlong race, which runs at about 4:50 p.m.

Washington Thoroughbred Among 2011 AHP Finalists

  Among the 69 American Horse Publications members, which included eight Thoroughbred publications, named finalists in the 2011 AHP Annual Awards Contest for materials published in 2010 is the Washington Thoroughbred. A total of 118 AHP members submitted 839 entries this year. The Washington Thoroughbred offered five entries in the following categories: Personal Column circulation under 20,000 (three entries), Illustration and Open Editorial Still Photograph.

  The AHP awards presentation will be held on June 18, 2011, at the AHP's annual seminar, this year titled "Hoofprints in the Sand" (which was named by WTBOA's Susan van Dyke) which will be held in San Diego.

Atta Boy Roy Back in the Winner's Circle

  R. E. V. Racing's three-time Washington champion Atta Boy Roy returned to the winner's circle at his Turf Paradise home base on May 1. The six-year-old ridgeling scored a 1 1/12-length win in a six-furlong allowance at the Arizona track. It marked his 11th victory in 25 outings and boosted his earnings to $490,016 for the Valorie Lund-trained sprinter. Bred in partnership by Patricia Murphy and Rick and Debbie Pabst, the 2006 WTBOA Summer Yearling Sale graduate had the lead at every call to finish up in 1:08.55. Craig Lanham's fellow Washington-bred stakes winner Goin' Dancin, an eight-year-old son of Ihtimam, ran third.

Castinette Dancer Wins Stakes at Hastings

  After taking a six-furlong maiden special weight race on April 16 by 3 1/4 lengths over Hastings Racecourse, three-year-old Castinette Dancer, came back 15 days later to score a half-length victory for owners Glen Todd and Patrick Kinsella in the $50,000 Boulevard Casinos Stakes at the British Columbia track. The $1.95-to-one favorite in the field of seven sophomore fillies, Castinette Dancer and rider Mario Gutierrez raced off the pacesetters before rallying in the stretch to defeat second choice Overvalued by a half-length.

  Bred in Washington by John Roche, and from the family of his champion racemare Soft Copy, the 2009 WTBOA Summer Yearling Sale RNA has two wins and two seconds in five starts and the daughter of Ministers Wild Cat-Premo Copy, by Supremo, has earned $48,580. Castinette Dancer is trained by Troy Taylor.

WTBOA Sales Grads in the News

  Relampago, a three-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Whywhywhy out of 1997 WTBOA sales graduate and $134,112 stakes winner I Got Silver, by Petersburg, won a mile turf allowance race at Calder Race Course on April 30 by three lengths

  .2009 WTBOA September sale graduate G Its Late, a daughter of Matty G out of stakes winner Late Nite Martini, won a 6 1/2-furlong maiden claiming race at Hastings Racecourse on May 1. The half-sister to 2010 stakes winners Cuddabinthwhiskey and Midnight Martini, all bred by Terry and Mary Lou Griffin, races for Corsair Holdings Ltd and is trained by William La Vanway.

Emerald Downs Notes

  Luigi and Victor DiPietro's Hayjax took the April 29 feature, a 5 1/2-furlong allowance/optional claiming race. The three-year-old California-bred scored a gate-to-wire victory, defeating Northwest Farms LLC's stakes-placed Seattle Sniper by 3 1/4 lengths. It was the second win in six starts for the half-brother to 2003 Washington horse of the year Taiaslew. Bred by DiPietro Thoroughbreds, the son of Souvenir Copy-Taiayellowribbon, by Sharper One, was ridden by Joe Crispin and is trained by Tim McCanna.

  The third race on the April 30 card featured the return to action of impressive 2010 maiden winners Include the Baby and You Me and Ema B and stakes-placed Private Fortune in a 5 1/2-furlong allowance. Monogram Racing Stable and Patrick Hoonan's You Me and Ema B dueled with Michael and Amy Feuerborn's Include the Baby for the lead throughout the race before You Me and Ema B edged away to a length win over her combative rival. It was the second win in two starts for the Washington-bred You Me and Ema B, who had earned her first victory by 4 1/4 lengths last summer. A Margo Lloyd trainee who was ridden by Deborah Hoonan-Trujillo, You Me and Ema B was an $8,700 2008 WTBOA Summer Yearling Sale graduate. The now $17,765 earner, a daughter of You and I-Carrie Ann, by Son of Briartic, was bred by Jennifer Webber and Ken Jochimsen.

  The Saturday card also marked the 2011 debut of Ken Miles' homebred three-year-old colt Slim Pickins. The son of Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Giacomo out of the stakes-placed Pentelicus mare Time for Magic circled the field to score a neck victory over Tice Ranch's Advancement. The new winner, who was ridden by Leslie Mawing, hails from trainer Chris Stenslie's barn.

  May Day racing at Emerald Downs featured the return of 2009 Washington champion two-year-old Hollywood Harbor in his first outing since April 10, 2010. Also competing in the five-horse field of stakes horses was Frank McDonald's homebred Bogachiel, a Washington-bred son of Harbor the Gold, as is Hollywood Harbor. From the get-go the paternal half-brothers set a pressured pace. At the end of the 5 1/2-furlong allowance/$50,000 optional claiming race Bogachiel, with Gallyn Mitchell aboard, prevailed by a neck over One Horse Will Do Corporation and Stenslie's Hollywood Harbor. Final race time was 1:02.41 over the fast track. It was the third win for the Bonnie Jenne-trained Bogachiel who has now earned $43,981.

  In a big upset, Dr. Rodney Orr's Dream Sweeper, at $16.50-to-one, won the 5 1/2-furlong Sunday allowance feature by 1 1/2 lengths. Finishing in the five-year-old daughter of Salt Lake's wake were multiple stakes winners No Flies On Doodle, Sis's Sis and Carrabelle Harbor. Ridden by Mawing and trained by Stenslie, Dream Sweeper, a Kentucky-bred half-sister to Grade 1 stakes winner Dream Rush, has now won three races and earned $35,252 for Oregonian Orr.

  If asked who is the oldest horse to ever win at Emerald Downs, the answer lies in the fifth race on May 1. In his Emerald debut, 12-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding Don't Ya Lovett turned in a winning performance against all comers in a mile $3,500 claiming race. It marked the 15th lifetime win for the Paul Barbano's runner, who was making his first start for trainer Charles Essex and jockey Robert Skelly. Don't Ya Lovett pushed his earning totals to $265,053 with his neck victory.

  Through May 3, rider Leslie Mawing has outpaced Joe Crispin in the win category by 15 to 13. Juan Gutierrez and Deborah Hoonan-Trujillo currently stand tied in the jockey standings with eight wins apiece.

  Tim McCanna has taken the lead among the trainers, having saddled 15 winners. Howard Belvoir is in second with seven wins and Vann Belvoir and Charles Essex are tied in third with six wins each.

Federal Drug Legislation Introduced

  Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) and Representative Ed Whitfield (R-KY) introduced federal legislation to prohibit race-day medication on May 4, 2011. The Interstate Horseracing Improvement Act is co-sponsored in the House by Joe Pitts, Ben Chandler and Jan Schakowsky, and will amend the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978, which governs off-track wagering. The new legislation would prohibit the use of performance-enhancing drugs and would outline penalties for infractions.

Other News

  Mark Dedomenico LLC, John Carver and trainer Jerry  Hollendorfer's Dove Forest, a three-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Forestry out of national two-year-old filly champion Caressing, by Honour and Glory, won a six-furlong allowance test at Golden Gate on May 1 and improved her record to 2-1-0 from three starts.

  Dr. Mikel and Patricia Harrington and partners' first-time two-year-old starter Free and Able took a 4 1/2-furlong maiden special weight race at Hollywood Park on May 1. The California-bred filly (by Swiss Yodeler) - who was also bred by the Harringtons and is trained by Mike - is out of Embraceable Slew, a daughter of Slewdledo.

  .Among the horses in Washington Hall of Fame trainer Kathy Walsh's barn this year is the three-year-old unbeaten filly Sarah's Secret. The daughter of Leroidesanimaux (Brz) took her most recent victory in a six-furlong allowance over Hollywood Park's turf course on May 1 and has earned $87,000 in her trio of starts.

  Mike Pegram and John Sikura's stakes-winning Irish Gypsy finished second to Saint Isabelle in the $73,100 Time to Leave Stakes at Hollywood Park on May 1. The $151,310 earning daughter of Hennessy is out of Rayelle, a stakes-winning daughter of Relaunch out of Washington horse of the year and Grade 1 stakes winner Delicate Vine.

  Randall and Rossi LLC's Emerald champion Gallant Son finished second in the $100,000 San Francisco Mile Stakes (G3) run at Golden Gate Fields on April 30. The five-year-old multiple stakes-winning son of Malabar Gold-Explicity, by Exploit, who is trained by Frank Lucarelli, has now earned $332,632. On the same card, Randall and Rossi LLC's Flight of a Dream, a three-year-old Florida-bred daughter of Silver Train who is also conditioned by Lucarelli, won a mile $20,000 maiden claiming race over the Albany track's turf course.

  Selah, Washington native Wesley Ward is gaining a reputation as an international trainer of note. In 2009 he won two group stakes at Royal Ascot in England - becoming the first North American conditioner to take at stakes at the exclusive English meet - and more recently has won three races with three starters in France. The former Eclipse Award-winning apprentice jockey's first win in France came with two-year-old Tiz Terrific at Longchamp on April 30 and was followed by wins with Everday Dave and Judy the Beauty at Chantilly on May 2.

In Memoriam

Charles E. "Chuck" Keller

  Charles "Chuck" Keller, 63, passed away on April 28, 2011. Born in Dickinson, North Dakota, Chuck graduated from that town's St. Patrick's Grade School in 1962 and four years later finished his education at Francis Adams High School in Clarkston.

  He worked in the construction field until an on the job injury forced him to find other work. After attending the Bill Long Saddle Making School, he opened Chuck's Saddle Shop. He also was a stockman at the Stockland Stockyards and ponied runners at Playfair Race Course.

  A gentleman rancher, horse trainer and creative carpenter, Chuck enjoyed rodeos, bull and bronc riding, camping and fishing.

  He is survived by his wife, Patt; children, Corey Keller, Carey Farnsworth, Tracey Thompson, Kirstin Kendall and India DeKanter; numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews; brothers, John (Vi) Keller, Joe (Susan) Keller and P.E. (Lulu) Keller; and sisters, Janice (Virgil) Feist, Jackie (Lee) Bumpus and Christine Kubas.

Book Review

And in honor of Kentucky Derby weekend we present the following book review:

Sham - Great Was Second Best

A Brave Bay's Rivalry with the Legendary Secretariat 

by  Phil Dandrea


  Truthfully, when I first started this book I wondered why anyone would want to write a story about Sham. Granted he was an above average racehorse - a runner-up in two classics - and a cleverly named son of Pretense, but this was the crop of racing "Greats," as in Secretariat, Forego and Dahlia. But evidently this handsome dark bay underdog caught the imagination of Phil Dandrea, as he worked hard to convey images and facts that would make us come to admire  this "second best" racehorse and working class hero. 

  While sometimes the author gets a bit too flowery - especially in the first 150 pages or so - where the long descriptions tend to slow down the flow of the story and action, I was impressed with the amount of research and his dedication to detail. Even without an index, the book has nearly 90 pages of bibliography and endnotes. 

  Dandrea's hard work paid off with some great quotes, but alas many of the best were about Sham's very able nemesis Secretariat, including Art Buchwald's suggestion that the then beleaguered President Nixon should hire Secretariat as a White House aide, since the chestnut super horse had "the complete and unequivocal backing of all the American people." After Buchwald's comment was "challenged" by a member of the White House press corps, who said there had been horses in the White House before, Buchwald sagely tallied back with, "But this one has a head."

  Another great quote retrieved came from the Daily Racing Form's William C. Phillips. I truly loved the imagery invoked when he wrote that all rider Ron Turcotte had to do with his reins as he steered Secretariat home in the Derby was to smoothly twist his wrists "like a gentleman straightening the cuffs of his dress shirt."

  And it had never struck me before how the "big red" Secretariat, with his blue and white silks visually represented Old Glory's colors and became "a metaphor for credibility, integrity and patriotism..." 

  It was also fun to see mention of Sham squaring off with future Longacres Derby winner and Washington leading sire Table Run in the spring of their three-year-old seasons.

  There was some unevenness and a need for continuity and flow in the story telling. After all of Dandrea's build-up to the 1973 Kentucky Derby, the opening paragraphs relating to the actual race are strangely in cohesive and anti-climatic, as if he really didn't want to relive Sham's loss. But then he gets back on track to give credit where credit was due.

  Dandrea's background information on many of the major classic contenders and their colorful owners a plus.

  One thing the volume could use is an editor with adequate racing knowledge to shed it of its terminology gaffs and way too many recounting of "odds" and other such unnecessary stats. And please, horses do not have snouts! Nor were Sham and Secretariat considered  "cousins," even if their dams share the same sire. One of more puzzling statements encountered was: "Pretense entered stud in 1969 young and unproven as a sire." While a true statement, all stallions who enter stud are unproven as sires and usually young. And then there was this line, which even a non-horseperson should have questioned. Reportedly an ad in The Blood-Horse stated that Knightly Dawn, who competed with Secretariat and Sham -  being also from the 1970 foal crop - was retiring to stud, and was not only a Grade 1 stakes winner, but a "half-brother to Secretariat," both being sons of Somethingroyal!  In reality, Knightly Dawn, a half-brother to 1967 Derby winner Proud Clarion, was a son of Sir Gaylord, and Sir Gaylord was the first of Somethingroyal's four stakes winners.

  Another small disappointment was in the lack of photos of Sham himself.  From the 32 photos included, there were a dozen that included Sham, but all were basically racing photos. There were no candid shots, conformation shots or photos of his best offspring. After reading about how unique he was, it left a big hole in his biography.

  All in all the author did make his point - and with quotes from many industry leaders of the time to back him up - that Sham was indeed highly thought of, probably did help push Secretariat to greatness and in addition, may have well been a Triple Crown winner on his own, if not for Meadow Stables' awesome "Big Red."

  I am glad we are finally getting the chance to hear Sham's side of the story of that wonderful and historic Triple Crown, and as Dandrea concludes his heartfelt saga, "In recognizing the accomplishments of Secretariat, one can begin to appreciate Sham."

--Susan E. van Dyke