Horse of the Year contenders Wise Dan and I’ll Have Another highlight the 18 horses with Keeneland connections named as finalists for 2012 Eclipse Award honors.
Wise Dan, based at Keeneland throughout much of the year with trainer Charlie Lopresti, is considered the frontrunner for Horse of the Year honors. Wise Dan kicked off 2012 with an exciting 10½-length victory in Keeneland’s Ben Ali (G3), and returned this fall to take the Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) as a prep for his win in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1). Owned and bred by Morton Fink, Wise Dan also is a finalist for champion older male and male turf horse.
Paul Reddam’s I’ll Have Another, winner of the 2012 Kentucky Derby (G1), Preakness (G1) and Santa Anita Derby (G1), is a graduate of Keeneland’s 2010 September Yearling Sale. The Flower Alley colt, also a finalist for champion three-year-old colt, was purchased for $11,000 by Victor Davila from the consignment of Brookdale Sales, agent.
Eclipse Award finalists with Keeneland connections are:
Two-Year-Old Male: Each of the three finalists for juvenile champion are graduates of Keeneland’s 2011 September Sale – Shanghai Bobby, winner of the Champagne (G1) and Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1); Uncaptured, winner of the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2); and Violence, winner of the CashCall Futurity (G1).
Two-Year-Old Filly: Beholder, winner of the Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) and Executiveprivilege, winner of the Del Mar Debutante (G1) and Chandelier (G1), are alumni of the 2011 September Sale.
Three-Year-Old Male: Kentucky Derby and Preakness 1-2 finishers I’ll Have Another and Bodemeister, are graduates of the 2010 September Sale.
Three-Year-Old Filly: My Miss Aurelia, 2011 champion juvenile filly and winner in 2012 of the Cotillion (G1), and 2012 Kentucky Oaks (G1) winner Believe You Can are 2010 September Sale alumni.
Older Male: Wise Dan won the 2012 Ben Ali (G3) and Shadwell Turf Mile (G1).
Older Female: 2011 champion Royal Delta sold for $8.5 million, the highest-price for a horse in training in Keeneland sale history, at the 2011 November Breeding Stock Sale. Groupie Doll won the 2012 Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) and Vinery Madison (G1) at Keeneland.
Male Sprinter: Classic winner Shackleford, who captured the 2012 Metropolitan (G1) and Clark (G1), was consigned to the 2009 September Sale.
Female Sprinter: Each finalist has a connection to Keeneland – 2012 Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) winner Mizdirection and TVG Acorn (G1) and Test (G1) winner Contested, are September Sale graduates. The aforementioned Groupie Doll is also a finalist in this category.
Male Turf Horse: 2012 Elkhorn (G2) stakes winner Point of Entry and the aforementioned Wise Dan.
Female Turf Horse: Tapitsfly won the 2012 First Lady (G1). September Sale alum Marketing Mix made her 2012 debut with an allowance win at Keeneland in April.