Vancouver, B.C. (Oct. 22/17) – Emotions have a habit of running higher than normal when a season winds down in the sporting world and Sunday’s final card of 2017 at Hastings Racecourse was no exception.

The 52-day thoroughbred schedule ended on an obvious high with Phil Hall celebrating his first-ever Leading Trainers title and Richard Hamel capturing two more stakes victories for his third consecutive Leading Jockeys crown. In each case, Hall and Hamel were runaway winners.  To put it in racing terms, they went gate-to-wire setting the pace right from opening day last April.

Hall is the son of the late Robert (Bobby) Hall, owner/trainer of the legendary George Royal, heralded as the greatest B.C.-bred ever.

“I’m sure Dad would be proud and I wish he was here to see it,” Phil said from the winner’s circle after his 3-year-old filly Baby’s Got Track was Hall’s 36th training win of the season in the BC Cup Distaff.

Ridden by Silvino Morales, Baby’s Got Track’s final time over 1 1/8 miles was 1:51.53 and paid a handsome $24.70, $12.30, $7.70.

The Distaff was one of four $50,000 stake races on BC Cup Day.  Hamel rode two of them to make it 18 stakes victories and 78 wins overall in a season that resulted in his fifth career riding title at Hastings.

Hamel swept both ends of the BC Cup races for 2-year-olds bred in British Columbia or Washington aboard favoured Raider in the Debutante for trainer Greg Tracy and followed it up by winning with Weekend Wizard in the Nursery for trainer Craig MacPherson.

“It’s been an unbelievable year for me,” Hamel said. “It was a lot of hard work and I have so many people to thank for the way things have gone.”

With that, he gave his familiar victory wave to the crowd for a final time in 2017.

The BC Cup Classic headlined the eight-race card and there were more passionate moments in store when the husband and wife training team of John and Tammy Snow embraced after watching their 4-year-old gelding Crazy Prophet rally in the closing stages with Amadeo Perez in the irons. It was the second year in a row Crazy Prophet found himself being pampered with the victory blanket in the Classic.

He finished the 1 1/8 miles in a final time of 1:49.93. “We’ve had a tough year finishing second in the BC Premiers and second in the Randall Plate,” said owner Dave Bennington of Shamrock Racing Stable. “Today we put those behind us and move forward.”

It is a move John Snow said would include shipping Crazy Prophet to California for the winter under the tutelage of Emerald Downs leading trainer Blaine Wright.

With the barns at Hastings about to close for the season, next up will be the annual Thoroughbred Awards Dinner on Nov. 30 at Hard Rock Casino with Phil Hall and Richard Hamel officially celebrating their accomplishments throughout the 2017 season.


Mario Gutierrez
October 26Santa Anita

True Valor Wgt-124 Race 2 Starter Allowance
Push Through Wgt-120 Race 3 Maiden Special Weight
King Eddie Wgt-120 Race 3 Maiden Special Weight
October 27Santa Anita

Country Fast Wgt-120 Race 2 Maiden Claiming $30,000
Hacktivism Wgt-124 Race 5 Allowance Optional Claiming $40,000
Turing Machine Wgt-120 Race 6 Maiden Special Weight
Etching Wgt-120 Race 6 Maiden Special Weight

October 22 – Santa Anita
Twirling Apples finished 1st by 3/4 length Race 6 Chart


The Road to Recovery: Rehab for the Horse’s Upper-Body

The Road to Recovery: Rehab for the Horse's Upper-Body 

For both injury prevention and return to work, Denton recommends stretching and strengthening the core muscles to mobilize and stabilize the horse’s back.

Photo: Alexandra Beckstett, The Horse Managing Editor

Rehabilitation options for upper-body pain and injury

When you think of lameness, limb pain is likely the first cause to come to mind. Yet back, neck, and pelvic pain can be just as debilitating. Thankfully, therapies ranging from shock wave to acupuncture are available to help horses recover. 

In the first of this two-part series, we’ll explore full-body rehabilitation options; in Part 2 we’ll focus solely on the limbs.

A Multifocal Approach

Upper-body rehabilitation is rarely limited to one problem with one solution: Horses might be suffering from multiple problems, and several therapies can overlap during the course of ­treatment.

“I first do a full clinical exam,” says Stephen Denton, DVM, owner of Abingdon Equine Veterinary Services, in Virginia, and provider of sports medicine and lameness services through Performance Equine Vets, in Aiken, South Carolina. “Many performance horses will have a lower leg component, in addition to having a back problem, which always has to be addressed for proper treatment. There’s no cookbook rehab program—it depends on the horse’s clinical diagnosis, history, duration of the condition, and other complicating factors.”

“If the horse is really painful, we’ll throw the book at him,” says Carrie Schlachter, VMD, Dipl. ACVSMR, medical director at Circle Oak Equine, a lameness, sports medicine, and rehabilitation practice in Petaluma, California. “It may be a sequential thing, such as starting with shock wave and moving to laser as the pain improves. If the horse has nonfocal pain throughout the body, we might start with chiropractic and a course of Adequan to decrease the overall body pain and then hone in with other modalities where the more specific pain is emanating from.” 

Schlachter suggests finding a veterinarian within your area and budget that’s experienced using more than one therapeutic modality.

Where Does it Hurt?

Schlachter says the three main upper-body tissue types practitioners worry about are bone, muscle, and ligament. “The most commonly injured or painful condition in the upper body is probably bony—similar to the lower leg, arthritis in the upper body is common,” she says. “With muscle issues, you may be trying to keep the muscle feeling good so the horse can work. Ligament injuries are the least common type in the upper body.” 

Horses can develop arthritis in the cervical (neck), thoracic (mid-back), lumbar (loin), or sacroiliac (pelvis/croup) areas. “In performance horses in particular, arthritis can create pain, which may decrease performance or even be significant enough to take the horse out of performance,” says Schlachter. 

Regardless of the source of pain, she says treatment goals are to decrease ­inflammation and improve comfort. “­Often the rehab we do for upper-body bony issues is a maintenance type of rehab, to keep the horse feeling good and in work.”

Further, best outcomes stem from early intervention. “I think a lot of horses are in more pain than they let on, so my general rule of thumb for my clients is if you notice consistent soreness in your horse, have him assessed,” says Schlachter, adding that warning signs can range from discomfort during grooming to difficulty performing under saddle.


This article continues in the October 2017 issue of The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care. Subscribe now and get an immediate download of this issue including this in-depth feature on current rehabilitation options for upper-body pain and injury and a promising therapy on the horizon.

Already a magazine subscriber? Digital subscribers can access their October issue here. Domestic print subscribers who have not received their copy should email circulation@thehorse.com.


About the Author

Natalie DeFee Mendik, MA

Freelance journalist Natalie DeFee Mendik is a multiple American Horse Publications editorial and graphics awards winner specializing in equestrian media. She holds an MA in English from Colorado State University and an International Federation of Journalists’ International press card, and is a member of the International Alliance of Equestrian Journalists. With over three decades of horse experience, Natalie’s main equine interests are dressage and vaulting. Having lived and ridden in England, Switzerland, and various parts of the United States, Natalie currently resides in Colorado with her husband and two girls


Blizzard Condition, Hip 31, is a white Get Stormy colt owned and bred by Denise Purvis and consigned by Brandywine

Fasig-Tipton October Closes Yearling Sale Season

Coming on the heels of a rebound within North American markets this year, the Fasig-Tipton October sale is the final major yearling sale of 2017 and as such offers buyers one last opportunity to buy foals of 2016.


More Stories From Today’s Edition

Hastings Daily Results and Activity


Sunday, October 22
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Claiming – $4,000 $11,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Starter Optional Claiming – $6,250 $20,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 British Columbia Cup Debutante S. $50,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 British Columbia Cup Distaff H. $50,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 British Columbia Cup Nursery S. $50,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 British Columbia Cup Classic H. $50,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Claiming – $4,000 $12,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Maiden Claiming – $4,000 $11,000 Overnight Overnight





A bevy of blueblood talent bent on winning Breeders’ Cup races were out en masse on a spectacular Sunday morning at Santa Anita, among the most prominent of them undefeated Breeders’ Cup Juvenile favorite Bolt d’Oro.
The $630,000 two-year-old son of Medaglia d’Oro, under regular rider Corey Nakatani, went five furlongs at the 7:45 a.m. break in 1:01.40.
“I thought it was great,” said owner/trainer Mick Ruis. “Corey knows the horse, and like everyone says, you don’t win the race in the morning. It looked like he got something out of it, but not much.
“He’s not even breathing (hard). He turned around like he was just on a gallop, so I’m happy; real happy.”
Ruis, who owns Bolt d’Oro with his wife, Wendy, said the bay colt that won the Sept. 30 FrontRunner Stakes by 7 ¾ lengths would breeze another five-eighths at Santa Anita next Sunday, walk here the next day, then “take him down there” for the Juvenile to be run Nov. 4.
Breeders’ Cup Classic contender West Coast worked in company with Hoppertunity, who is ticketed for next Saturday’s $70,000 Comma to the Top Stakes at a flat mile on dirt.
Drayden Van Dyke was aboard West Coast for Sunday’s drill, while Martin Garcia rode Hoppertunity, who has not raced since finishing sixth behind victorious stablemate Arrogate in the Dubai World Cup last March 25.
“The mile (of the Comma to the Top) is a little too short for him,” trainer Bob Baffert allowed, “but I’ve got to do something with him.
“West Coast went nice. He just sat behind Hoppertunity (on the outside) and they finished up together, so the plan worked. It was a good work for him.”
Baffert also breezed multiple Grade I winner Abel Tasman (Distaff) seven furlongs from the gate under Mike Smith, in company with Leading Score. Abel Tasman was clocked in 1:25.60; Leading Score got 1:13.40 for six furlongs.
“She went really well,” Baffert said of Abel Tasman, who was upset by It Tiz Well in the Grade I Cotillion at Parx after rushing up on her own prematurely approaching the backstretch.
“I’m really happy,” Baffert said of her breeze. “For some reason, in her last two races, she was a little bit confused but we got her in a nice gate drill today.
“She just sat back there like she has done before. She was getting in a bad habit of getting in the bit and running up, but she broke like a shot today.”
In other Breeders’ Cup news:
Midnight Storm (Dirt Mile) and Ransom the Moon (Sprint) each worked five furlongs in the identical time of 1:00.20 for Phil D’Amato, who called the drills “great.”
Hunt (Turf) worked six furlongs on Santa Anita’s firm turf course for D’Amato in 1:13.40.
Multiple graded stakes winner Goodyearforroses, originally scheduled to work on the turf, went four furlongs on the main track in 47.20 for Richard Baltas, who, with two wins Saturday, took an 8-7 lead over Peter Miller in the race for leading trainer with five racing days left in the Autumn Meet.

FINISH LINES: Phil D’Amato plans to work Spin Me a Kiss Monday for Saturday’s Grade III, $100,000 Autumn Miss Stakes for three-year-old fillies at a mile on turf. “Our plans are to run,” the trainer said of the consistent daughter of Hard Spun owned by Francie Nilforushan. “She won twice going two turns down at Del Mar and I think this should be a nice spot. She has a lot of tactical speed and that’s what you need on this turf course.” Probable for the Autumn Miss: Beautiful Becca, Mario Gutierrez; I’m Betty G, no rider; Kathy’s Song, no rider; Lull, no rider; Meadowsweet, Evin Roman; Reverse, Drayden Van Dyke; Sandy’s Surprise, no rider; Spin Me a Kiss, Edwin Maldonado; Storm the Hill, no rider; and Tapped, Mike Smith. Beautiful Becca worked four furlongs for Jerry Hollendorfer Sunday in a bullet 47 seconds . . . Today’s second race is named the Northrup Grumman Commercial Bank of California, but it could be called The Comeback Kids. Five of the six entrants have been off a combined total of 6 ½ years, topped by Gonna Fly Now, who last raced on Nov. 15, 2013. Mesa Sky last ran on Oct. 29, 2016; Hot Sean Nov. 19, 2016; The Critical Way June 3 of this year; and Aristocratic two months ago on Aug. 20. Edwards Going Left, the 2-1 morning line favorite in the 6 ½ furlong race, raced most recently, finishing sixth and last in the Grade I Santa Anita Sprint Championship on Oct. 7, just over two weeks ago . . . Corey Nakatani celebrated his 47th birthday Saturday in a surprise session at Del Frisco’s Grill in Pasadena . . . Now through closing day, next Sunday, Oct. 29, just in time for Halloween, Santa Anita offers a Pumpkin Festival in the Family Fun Zone featuring an Infield full of activities for little jockeys. Inflatable jumpers, face painting, carnival games, pony rides, a playground and even a chance to meet the immortal “Seabiscuit” are part of the exciting package which can be purchased online at santaanita.com/events at a discount price . . . Santa Anita will be dark Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Live racing resumes Thursday, Oct. 26 at 1 p.m., the first of the final four days of the Autumn Meet. Admission gates open Thursday at 11 a.m.

Santa Anita Daily Results and Activity


Sunday, October 22
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Starter Allowance – $50,000 $30,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Allowance Optional Claiming – $62,500 $53,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Anoakia S. $70,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Allowance Optional Claiming – $75,000 $51,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Maiden Special Weight $50,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Maiden Claiming – $50,000 $28,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Claiming – $32,000 $32,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Allowance $51,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Maiden Claiming – $20,000 $17,000 Overnight Overnight

Early Entries

Friday, October 27 Overnight
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Special Weight $50,000
Race 2 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000
Race 3 Allowance $51,000
Race 4 Maiden Claiming – $30,000 $21,000
Race 5 Allowance Optional Claiming – $40,000 $51,000
Race 6 Maiden Special Weight $50,000
Race 7 Starter Handicap $25,000
Race 8 Maiden Special Weight $50,000

Turf Paradise Daily Results and Activity


Sunday, October 22
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Allowance $6,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Starter Allowance – $3,500 $8,200 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Maiden Claiming – $8,000 $7,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Claiming – $12,500 $11,200 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Claiming – $3,000 $7,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Claiming – $3,500 $7,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Starter Allowance – $6,250 $10,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Starter Allowance – $3,500 $8,200 Overnight Overnight


Golden Gate Daily Results and Activity


Sunday, October 22
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Starter Allowance – $8,000 $13,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 2 Maiden Special Weight $26,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 3 Maiden Claiming – $8,000 $8,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 4 Claiming – $40,000 $25,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 5 Allowance Optional Claiming – $40,000 $27,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 6 Maiden Claiming – $8,000 $8,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 7 Claiming – $6,250 $11,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 8 Maiden Claiming – $25,000 $14,000 Overnight Overnight
Race 9 Claiming – $12,500 $12,000 Overnight Overnight

Early Entries

Friday, October 27 Overnight
Race# Race Type Purse
Race 1 Maiden Claiming – $8,000 $8,000
Race 2 Claiming – $4,000 $9,000
Race 3 Claiming – $20,000 $18,000
Race 4 Maiden Claiming – $12,500 $9,000
Race 5 Starter Allowance – $40,000 $17,000
Race 6 Maiden Claiming – $32,000 $15,000
Race 7 Claiming – $5,000 $9,500
Race 8 Allowance Optional Claiming – $62,500 $29,000