Canadian Racing

Canadian Trainer Suspended 20 Years for Drug Violations

Trainer Robert Gerl has been suspended 20 years and fined $100,000 after two horses under his care tested positive for ostarine, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) announced Tuesday. The drug acts much like anabolic steroids in that it is used to create anabolic activity and enhance muscle growth by directly stimulating androgen receptors. A non-therapeutic substance, it has not been approved for human use or consumption in the U.S., or in any other country. The AGCO alleges that two horses trained by Gerl, Arafat (War On Gaza)...

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Hasting Inspector Charged with Taking Bribes

A racetrack and gaming inspector for the province of British Columbia is due in a Vancouver court May 26 to answer to 36 breach-of-trust and bribery charges that allege he took money from Hastings-based trainers in exchange for supplying fake racing licenses so Mexican nationals without work permits could be employed as grooms. Canada's CBC News first broke the story Tuesday, citing information contained in a search warrant involving Darren Scott Young. The investigation dates to 2018, and was fleshed out after sources came forward to the government when immigration...

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New GM For Jockey Club of Canada

Megan Allan has assumed the role of General Manager of The Jockey Club of Canada, effective May 1, 2022. The post was previously held by Candice Dixon. A Thoroughbred industry veteran, Allan's past experience includes yearling preparation and sales with Farm on a Hill, Michael C. Byrne and Windfields Farm; breaking and training with J&M Training Centre; breeding and foaling with Norse Ridge Farms and Castle Peak Farm, as well as her own farm, Megan Kraus Thoroughbreds. Allan has spent the past several years as a project coordinator with Gerrits...

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Alberta Night of Champions Returns In-Person May 6

After two years of a virtual format, Alberta's Night of Champions will be held in person Friday, May 6 at Century Mile Racetrack and Casino in Nisku, Alberta. The Night of Champions is an annual event that celebrates the achievements of the Alberta Thoroughbred industry in the previous season with award winners announced in a variety of categories such as Leading Breeder, Leading Alberta Bred and Horse of the Year. This year's gala evening, dinner and awards presentation will be held in the Paddock Room at Century Mile beginning with...

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Mighty Heart Doubles Up as Canadian Horse of the Year

Canada's 2020 Horse of the Year Mighty Heart (Dramedy) took home the same honors for the 2021 season at the 47th Annual Sovereign Awards, hosted by The Jockey Club of Canada Thursday at the Universal Eventspace just outside of Toronto. A homebred for Larry Cordes, Mighty Heart won the GII Autumn S. and GIII Dominion Day S. in Canada, as well as the Blame S. at Churchill Downs. The popular one-eyed 4-year-old had won the same award last year on the strength of his victories in the Queen's Plate and...

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Woodbine and Century Mile Partner for Canadian-Ontario Derby Initiative

Woodbine Entertainment and Century Mile have partnered up to give the winner of the GIII Canadian Derby free entry to the GIII Ontario Derby. The Canadian Derby will be run Aug. 20 at Century Mile in Edmonton, while the Ontario Derby is scheduled for Oct. 23 at Woodbine. Any runner that wins both events will earn connections a $50,000 bonus. "This exciting initiative provides a great opportunity to connect our sport across the country and further develop the Canadian Thoroughbred industry," said Tim Lawson, Woodbine's director of Thoroughbred racing. Woodbine's...

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Racing in Canada Remains Resolute Amid COVID Turbulence

by Nigel Reid The memory of what COVID-19 restrictions did to Canada's racing industry during the past 18 months, allied to the looming spectre of the troubling new variant, has done little to dispel the general uncertainty surrounding the sport north of the 49th parallel. However, if the results of what was a truncated season are to be believed, there is cause for optimism over the manner in which the sport, especially at the country's flagship Woodbine facility in Toronto, bounced back in 2021. Indeed, rumours of Canadian racing's demise...

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A Mighty Day for Woodbine Fans

What a singular coincidence, and literally so, that two of the best horses recently bred in Canada--and that has never been a negligible distinction--should both have only one eye. True, the origins of Hard Not to Love (Hard Spun) and Mighty Heart (Dramedy) could scarcely be more diverse. The 2019 GI La Brea S. winner, who was retired a few weeks ago, graduated from one of the most admired breeding programs in North America, which routinely sends yearlings to Keeneland as coveted as any making a shorter trip from the...

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Copeland Named Woodbine CCO

Woodbine Entertainment has appointed experienced sports executive Michael Copeland as its Chief Commercial Officer. Copeland assumes his role with Woodbine Entertainment May 10. Copeland founded and led his own consulting business focused on issues of growth and transformation in sports and entertainment. Prior to that, Copeland was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Toronto Argonauts (2015 to 2018), who under his leadership won a Grey Cup championship in 2017. Before joining the Argos, Copeland was the President and Chief Operating Officer of the Canadian Football League for nearly 10...

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Canadian Champion Jockey Kabel Dies

Canadian jockey Todd Kabel, a seven-time Sovereign Award winner, has died at the age of 55, according to a press release from Woodbine Racecourse. The native of Manitoba won 3,306 races from 1984 to 2013, racking up nearly US$106 million in career earnings. He was 1986's outstanding apprentice, and was named Canada's outstanding jockey in 1992, 1995, 2003, 2004 and 2006. Kabel, who reportedly battled with personal demons away from the track, piloted two Queen's Plate winners (Regal Discovery, 1995 and Scatter the Gold, 2000) and one winner of the...

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