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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

HBPA of British Columbia Congratulates Leaders at Hastings Racecourse

The Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association of British Columbia offers its congratulations to the leaders at Hastings Racecourse for the recently concluded 2013 Thoroughbred season. Worth noting is the fact that the trainer, jockey and owner categories were all taken by first-time winners.

Craig MacPherson led all trainers with 34 wins, including four stakes, from 156 starts at Hastings (he won two more races at Northlands, including a stakes). MacPherson started his first horse in 1981 at what was then called Exhibition Park. Thirty-two years later he finished four races ahead of the runners-up Dino Condelinios and Troy Taylor to take his first training title. He won 22% of his starts and finished second among trainers with 10 or more starts by running 1-2-3 in 63% of his races.

Enrique Gonzalez won eight races the last weekend of the meet to secure his first Hastings riding title with 59 wins, two more than last year’s leader Amadeo Perez. Gonzalez won six stakes and led in money won with $953,000. Gonzalez moved his tack to Hastings in 2012 and won 40 races. In his second season he has emerged as leading rider with agent Trapper Barroby booking mounts for him.

Swift Thoroughbreds won 30 races at Hastings in 2013 while winning their first owner’s title. Swift numbered six stakes wins among their 30 local victories. This is the 5th consecutive year the stable has won 30 or more races, most of those victories having occurred here. Swift’s first title marks a climb to the top that began in 2001 when they started six times at Hastings without a win. Their staunch support of all aspects of British Columbia’s Thoroughbred industry makes their ascent well deserved.

The two-year old filly Architecture, owned by Swift Thoroughbreds, was the leading earner at Hastings in 2013, winning $134,269 with three firsts and three seconds in six starts with all three wins coming in stakes. Architecture, a daughter of Dixie Chatter out of the Yankee Gentleman mare Harmony Creator, was bred in British Columbia by Whitewood Farm.

No listing of the accomplishments of British Columbia’s horses and horsepeople could fail to include the amazing Herbie D., who won the Lieutenant Governor’s at Hastings prior to heading to Emerald Downs to take the Mt. Rainier Handicap. Four weeks later he won the Grade 3 Longacres Mile. It was the second straight year a BC-bred won the Mile. Herbie D., who recovered from a serious tendon injury, was bred by George Robbins, is owned by Robbins and Darcia Doman and benefited from the exceptionally patient handling of trainer Rob Gilker.

When recognizing outstanding achievements for the 2013 season at Hastings, it is not possible to ignore the phenomenal season trainer Rosann Anderson put together. She won 11 races from 24 starts, including the Ladies Express with the resurrected claimer Cry Cry Cry. She led all trainers (five or more starts) by winning 46% of her starts and finishing in the first three 71% of the time. As for small barns with just a few starts, no one was better than trainer Bruce Unwin who did win three out of four.

Congratulations to all,
Richard Yates

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