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A Fabulous Bonus Futurity at Ajax Downs – Racing this Sunday for Father’s Da

PRESS RELEASE
A Fabulous Wednesday at Ajax Downs; Racing Continues This Sunday on Father’s Day
 
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The impeccably bred HAD TO BE FABULOUS flies past her rivals to win the $31,050 Bonus Futurity for 2-year-olds at Ajax Downs.
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AJAX DOWNS, JUNE 12, 2024 – One week after their champion horse Had to Be Ivory won his 27th career race, Carol and Jaime Robertson watched his 2-year-old half sister HAD TO BE FABULOUS streak to victory in the $31,050 Bonus Futurity at Ajax Downs on June 12. The Bonus Futurity headlined a stellar card of racing on a warm and sunny Wednesday, including two Trials for the $55,000-added Ontario Bred Derby.
 
Trained by Carol’s husband Bryn, Had to Be Fabulous had won her career debut on May 29 and was hammered down by the Ajax Downs fans as the 2 to 5 favourite for the Bonus Futurity. With Josh Scott riding, the bay filly broke behind her rivals from post eight but exploded in the late stages of the 250-yard dash to win by a length. First time starter Fate Zoomin, owned and bred by Richard Wincikaby of Orangeville, finished second over Jennifer Deveaux’s Bobbis Magic Beans who was third. The time of 13.639  was good for an 80 speed index.
 
This is a really mature little filly,” said Scott, who works with the Robertson horses at their farm in Hillsburgh, ON. “She has done everything right since her first day of training.”
The Robertson family has had several foals from their top racemare Had to Be Fandango, who passed away of old age in 2023. “Every one of her foals was a stakes winner or stakes placed,” said Bryn Robertson. “Had to Be Fabulous had to step up today but she broke from the outside post and kept going.”
*Two Trials for the Ontario Bred Derby produced two exciting finishes to set up for a super final on July 3. Marie Broadstock’s GENERAL SKYWALKER, trained by Bob Broadstock, won the fastest Trial as a 10 to 1 longshot under jockey Ramiro Castillo, holding off the Picov Cattle Company’s Storminn Normin by a neck to win the 300-yard race in 15.349 for an 89 speed index.
The first Trial was won by Amelie Aubut’s SENATOR OF MAGIC who led throughout to win by three-quarters of a length under jockey Diego Benitez over Pretty Magicall. Jason Pascoe trains the first two finishers of the first Trial. The final time of 15.895 translated into an 80 speed index. This was the third win of the afternoon for Benitez who started riding Quarter Horses in Alberta before moving his tack to Ontario two years ago.
**REMINDER: Ajax Downs hosts the popular FATHER’S DAY card of racing this Sunday, June 16, with a first race post time of 12:55 p.m. In addition to another great card of Quarter Horse racing, there will be prizes and giveaways throughout the afternoon plus a t-shirt giveaway for each program purchase, while quantities last.
Parking and admission are always free at Ajax Downs. You can watch and wager on the races trackside or from the expansive simulcast room. Wagering is also available through www.HPIBET.com.
 
Do you have a group or company event? Call ahead to reserve the trackside VIP room to enjoy food, drink and mutuels.
Follow Ajax Downs on social media @AjaxDowns and visit our website, www.AjaxDowns.com for news, track programs and more information.
Photos attached: Had to Be Fabulous, General Skywalker and Senator of Magic.
 
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Baby Bonus!! The 2-year-olds are set for the $31,050 Bonus Futurity at Ajax Downs!

PRESS RELEASE 
Baby Bonus! Two-Year-Olds Set for $31,050 Bonus Futurity at Ajax Downs
 
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The wife and husband team of Carol and Bryn Robertson with their son Mike and their 2-year-old filly Had to Be Fabulous (Josh Scott up) – New Image Media photo
 
 
AJAX DOWNS, JUNE 11, 2024 – One of the best things about summertime racing at Ajax Downs is seeing the stars of the future, the new crop of 2-year-old Quarter Horses. This Wednesday, June 12, some of these fresh faces will compete in the first baby stakes race of the season, the $31,050 Bonus Futurity at 250 yards.
 
The sixth day of the 2024 Ajax Downs season is also spiced up by two Trials for the $55,000-added Ontario Bred Derby for 3-year-olds. The seven-race card gets underway with a first race post time of 1:30 p.m.
 
Wednesday is one of two racing days this week for the Quarter Horses. Sunday is the popular Father’s Day card complete with prizes, giveaways, and great racing beginning at 12:55 p.m.
 
Unsurprisingly, the early favourite for the Bonus Futurity is the filly HAD TO BE FABULOUS since the half-sister to champion Had to Be Ivory won her first career race on May 29 with style. Carol and Jaime Robertson’s youngster is the last foal of the family’s prized mare Had to Be Fandango, who passed away last year. Josh Scott is back to ride Had to Be Fabulous, who has the outside post in a competitive field of seven on Wednesday.
The two juveniles behind Had to Be Fabulous in her debut can improve off their first races. FIRING RED LUCY finished second that day and Carly Furlonger will ride her from post position two.  BOBBI’S MAGIC BEANS, a flashy colt who starts from the rail post, finished a closing third to Had to Be Fabulous on May 29 and is the first racehorse for Jennifer Deveaux of Georgetown, who also bred the son of Ontario stallion Maryland Magic. Jason Pascoe trains Bobbi’s Magic Beans, who will be ridden by 2023 leading jockey Brian Bell.
*George Coleman’s SUGAR N PRIDE and jockey Rachael Isaacs are top contenders in the first of two Trials for the Ontario Bred Derby, which will have its final on July 3. A stakes winner last year as a 2-year-old Sugar N Pride comes off a troubled fifth place finish in the QROOI Open Derby. The second Trial marks the return of 2023 Alex Picov Futurity winner HAWKIN THE STRAW for Erik and Joyce Lehtinen and he will meet a strong field including the streaking STORMINN NORMAN, who is named for the late Norman Picov.
*Parking and admission are always free at Ajax Downs. You can watch and wager on the races trackside or from the expansive simulcast room. Wagering is also available through www.HPIBET.com. Do you have a group or company event? Call ahead to reserve the trackside VIP room to enjoy food, drink, and mutuels. Want to get involved in Quarter Horse ownership? Contact the QROOI at 905 – 426-7050 for details.
Follow Ajax Downs on social media @AjaxDowns and visit our website, www.AjaxDowns.com for news, track programs and more information.
 
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Had to Be Ivory Does It Again!

PRESS RELEASE

Had to Be Ivory Wins for the 27th Time, Becomes of Ontario’s Most Successful Quarter Horses

Ontario bred Had to Be Ivory coasted to another victory on Wednesday at Ajax Downs – New Image Media Photo

 

AJAX DOWNS, JUNE 6, 2024 – He did it again. HAD TO BE IVORY romped to his 27th career win in front of a big crowd at Ajax Downs on Wednesday, just missing the track record for 300-yards by three-tenths of a second. The ageless 9-year-old Ontario bred gelding was winning for the 11th consecutive time at his home track for Carol and Jaime Robertson of Hillsburgh, ON who own and bred the son of Ivory James. Bryn Roberston trains and Josh Scott was the winning rider.

 

Had to Be Ivory, one of the most successful Quarter Horses bred in this province, was coming off an easy win in the Norman Picov Maturity on May 15 and was heavily favoured in the $17,450 Open Allowance at 1 to 10. The big bay, a 2-time Horse of the Year at Ajax Downs, was quickly in front right out of the gates and won by 1 3/4 lengths over First Cold Wave, the 2022 Horse of the Year. The time of 15.31 was not far off Country Boy 123’s record of 15.10. Had to Be Ivory earned an impressive 107 speed index.

 

“This horse is unbelievable,” said Scott. “You really can’t get much better than this. He leaves the gate faster than a Porsche 911 Turbo.”

 

Carol Robertson, wife of Bryn, said, “We just take it race-by-race with him. As long as he still enjoys it he will keep racing.”

 

*There were also two exciting Trials for the $30,000-added Unclassified Stakes for 3-year-olds and upward on Wednesday and both races were run in fast times. CINDY LOO WHO edged Tcb Stormy Episode in the fastest 330-yard Trial. The two fillies put on a show as they opened up almost three lengths on the field and battled to the wire. Cindy Loo Who is owned by Robert Bailey and trained by Jason Pascoe. JB Botello rode the New Mexico-bred who was bought for $4,500 by Bailey last fall at an Oklahoma sale. Cindy Loo Who sped the distance in 16.941 for a hefty 95 speed index.

 

In the second Trial, James Bogar’s homebred SENATOR ROSE won a blanket finish by a neck in 17.095 for a 90 speed index. The 3-year-old filly, by the Ontario stallion Caviar and Corona, is trained by Bogar and Diego Benitez rode her. Recent winner Expediant was a close second over the lone colt in the field, Ill Go to War.

 

The 10-fastest times from the two Trials will compete in the final for the Unclassified Stakes final on June 26.

 

*Parking and admission are always free at Ajax Downs. You can watch and wager on the races trackside or from the expansive simulcast room. Wagering is also available through www.HPIBET.com. Do you have a group or company event? Call ahead to reserve the trackside VIP room to enjoy food, drink and mutuels. Want to get involved in Quarter Horse ownership? Contact the QROOI at 905 – 426-7050 for details.
Follow Ajax Downs on social media @AjaxDowns and visit our website, www.AjaxDowns.com for news, track programs and more information.

 

Photos: Cindy Loo Who (below left) and Senator Rose won the two Trials for the June 26 Unclassified Stakes – New Image Media Photos

 

 

 

Lilly and the Five Fillies Ready for Stakes Trials/ PLUS Had to Be Ivory Seeks Another Win

PRESS RELEASE

‘Lilly’ and the Five Fillies Stable Ready for Unclassified Stakes Trials PLUS

Had to Be Ivory Seeks Another Win

 

Flying filly!  A RUSHN LILLY carries the hopes of her owners, Five Fillies Racing, into the Trials for the Unclassified Stakes on June 5 – New Image Media Photo

 

 

AJAX DOWNS, JUNE 4, 2024 – There is no shortage of horsepower on the fifth day of Ajax Downs’ 2024 Quarter Horse meeting with two Trials for the $30,000-added Unclassified Stakes plus another appearance by two-time Horse of the Year HAD TO BE IVORY, who headlines a super Open Race filled with stakes stars. The June 5 card begins with a first race post time of 1:30 p.m.

 

The Unclassified Stakes, inaugurated in 2023 for horses who are just below the top-level stakes horses, has two competitive Trials at 330 yards for 3-year-olds and upward.

 

One of the newest ownership groups at Ajax, Five Fillies Racing, is excited at the prospects of their filly, A RUSHN LILLY who is in the second Trial, race five. Five Fillies is made up first-time racehorse owners Melissa Slute, from Oshawa, Nadia Faccin from Uxbridge, Vanessa Lawson-Dulny, from Whitby plus trainer Chantelle Bourgeois.

 

A Rushin Lilly, the fifth ‘Filly’, won the first race of the 2024 Ajax Downs season, picking up from where she left off last season when she won her season finale. The owners acquired the fast filly early in 2023 with help from the Quarter Racing Owners of Ontario’s Horse Acquisition Program, which offers an interest-free loan to purchase a racehorse. A Rushn Lilly, an Ontario sired and bred 4-year-old with two wins from seven races, is a contender in the second Trial with Cassandra Jeschke riding.

“She’s coming into the race great,” said Bourgeois. “She’s really sharp. We just need to see if she can carry her speed a bit farther [distance] this year and I think she can.  She’s matured a lot over the winter both physically and mentally.”

 

A Rushn Lilly’s main competition on Wednesday could come from recent winner EXPEDIANT, who won the Mayor’s Cup Maiden on May 22 for John Wilson and trainer Scott Reid. The 3-year-old filly will be ridden by Carly Furlonger. Owner and trainer James Bogar has two talented starters in the field, both fillies; SENATOR ROSE and LADY ALICE.

 

The first Unclassfied Stakes Trial, race four, has the stakes placed filly CINDY LOO WHO, owned by Robert Bailey, meeting Heste Sport’s gelding SUGAR BOY PERRY and four others.

 

*Hold on to your saddles as Wednesday’s sixth race, an Open allowance at 300 yards, is sure to be a thrill for fans. The race has attracted a stakes-calibe field including the the remarkable 9-year-old Had to Be Ivory, who comes off an easy win in the Norman Picov Maturity on May 15, his 26th career win. The field also includes 2021 Horse of the Year FIRST COLD WAVE and stakes winners SPY FOR THE SENATE and SOUR CANDY plus four other speedsters who will try to conquer the champ.

 

 

*Parking and admission are always free at Ajax Downs. You can watch and wager on the races trackside or from the expansive simulcast room. Wagering is also available through www.HPIBET.com. Do you have a group or company event? Call ahead to reserve the trackside VIP room to enjoy food, drink and mutuels. Want to get involved in Quarter Horse ownership? Contact the QROOI at 905 – 426-7050 for details.

Follow Ajax Downs on social media @AjaxDowns and visit our website, www.AjaxDowns.com for news, track programs and more information.

 

Longshot Jess a Deal Upsets the Battle of the Breeds!

PRESS RELEASE
Quarter Horse mare Jess a Deal Wins a Thriller in Battle of the Breeds
 
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The Quarter Horse mare JESS A DEAL with jockey Ramiro Castillo, held on to win the third Battle of the Breeds at Ajax Downs on May 29 – New Image Media photo
 
 
AJAX DOWNS, WEDNESDAY MAY 29, 2024 – A big crowd at Ajax Downs on Wednesday was treated to a thrilling finish in the $13,000 Battle of the Breeds as the Quarter Horse mare JESS A DEAL held on to win by a neck over Had to Be Relentless, another Quarter Horse, with the lone Thoroughbred, Silver Candice a closing third.
 
The longest shot in the field at 8 to 1, Jess a Deal and jockey Ramiro Castillo quickly sped to the lead early in the 770-yard race while favoured Silver Candice, a Thoroughbred trained by Fort Erie’s leading trainer Julie Mathes, chased in third. Turning for home, Jess a Deal continued to lead while Silver Candice rallied three wide and Had to Be Relentless finishing fast up the rail. At the finish, Jess a Deal held on to win by a neck in a track record time of 41.150. The 8-year-old mare, owned by the Picov Cattle Company and Marie Broadstock, is trained by Bob Broadstock. She paid $19.30 to win.
 
This was the third Battle of the Breeds and the second edition this year. The result put the Quarter Horses up 2 to 1 since the series began last fall. Jess a Deal finished second to the Thoroughbred Summer Retreat in the most recent BOTB on May 15 after breaking slowly from the gate.
 
“Last time we had a bit of a problem at the gate, she wasn’t paying attention,” said Castillo, who won two races in the afternoon. “I know this mare though, she breaks good. She did it easy today, I just wanted to keep her speed down to save for the finish.”
 
Broadstock, who trains his horses on his farm in Nestleton, ON, said he has been concentrating Jess a Deal’s training this year on the Battle of the Breeds series.  “She likes the distance and we have been focussing on going around a turn with her this year.”
 
The Broadstocks and Picov family purchased the Texas bred Jess a Deal following her first five career races. The daughter of Dealagame has nine career wins from 42 starts including the first ‘hook’ (around a turn) race at Ajax Downs, held in 2021.
 
“The Battle of the Breeds races are exciting and I think the fans love it,” said Broadstock. “Hopefully we can continue to have more of these races this year.”
*Another upset on the day was the win by SHINE RUNNERR and jockey Cassandra Jeschke in in fourth race. Jeschke got the Ontario bred gelding away from the gate in fast order and the pair won easily for owner, trainer and breeder Amanda McCormack.  Shine Runnerr paid $14.90 to win.
 
*Racing continues next Wednesday, June 7, with a first race post time of 1:30 p.m. Parking and admission are always free at Ajax Downs. You can watch and wager on the races trackside or from the expansive simulcast room. Wagering is also available through www.HPIBET.com. Do you have a group or company event? Call ahead to reserve the trackside VIP room to enjoy food, drink and mutuels.
Follow Ajax Downs on social media @AjaxDowns and visit our website, www.AjaxDowns.com for news, track programs and more information.
 
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