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NJSS honors 2006 best

December 21, 2006

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Artistic Fella, who sported a 10-race winning streak and was ranked among the nation’s top 3-year-old pacers during most of this year’s racing season, has been selected New Jersey Sire Stakes Horse of the Year for 2006.

The award, which is voted annually by the Sire Stakes Board of Trustees, is based only on performances in races for New Jersey-sired horses, including New Jersey Sire Stakes events and other major stakes for New Jersey-sired horses. In addition to the top honor, Artistic Fella, a son of Pacific Fella, was chosen NJSS 3-year-old pacing colt of the year.

Other divisional Sire Stakes horses of 2006 are: Passionate Glide, 3-year-old trotting filly; Ideal Weather, 3-year-old pacing filly; Enough Talk, 3-year-old trotting colt; Olay Olay, 2-year-old pacing colt; Artcotic, 2-year-old pacing filly; Bamboo Yankee, 2-year-old trotting colt, and Possess The Magic, 2-year-old trotting filly.

Artistic Fella, owned by Joseph Alborano and trained by Steve Elliott, swept the NJSS series at the Meadowlands, including the $175,000 final in an all-age Sire Stakes record clocking of 1:49.1. The colt earned $180,325 in Sire Stakes competition with four wins in four starts and accumulated $941,385 overall with 11 wins and one second in 18 starts. Among his other victories were the $1-million Meadowlands Pace in a lifetime best 1:48.4, $225,000 Berry’s Creek and a $125,000 division of the Oliver Wendell Holmes.

Passionate Glide, a daughter of Yankee Glide, was chosen NJSS 3-year-old trotting filly of the year, largely off her sweep of NJSS series at the Meadowlands that included a 1:52.4 NJSS record in the $175,000 final. While she earned $111,500 in NJSS competition, her performances overall resulted in 13 wins, one second and one third in 15 starts and total purse winnings of $1,087,900. Among her other victories was the $750,000 Hambletonian Oaks.

Ideal Weather, the only repeat winner from the 2005 list of NJSS horses of the year, took honors as 3-year-old filly pacer of the year. The daughter of Western Ideal was the 2005 two-year-old filly pacer of the year. She was in the money in nine of her 10 starts in New Jersey-sired competition, earning $204,195. Ideal Weather won three NJSS legs at the Meadowlands and one at Freehold Raceway, and was second in the final and the $175,000 Thomas D’Altrui Miss New Jersey Pace.

Enough Talk, a son of Enjoy Lavec, earned 3-year-old NJSS trotting colt honors with victories in the $115,000 Charles I. Smith Memorial Trot in 1:57.3 and the $85,000 NJSS final in 1:57.1, both at Freehold. He won five of nine NJ-sired races, with two seconds and a third to earn $158,326. Overall, he won 11 of 22 starts, earning a total of $189,206.

Olay Olay, a son of Artiscape, is the 2-year-old NJSS pacing colt of the year. He won three of four in NJSS competition, including the $85,000 final in 1:55.4 at Freehold. He won a Babic Memorial elimination before finishing a close second by a neck in the $160,000 Babic final. Overall, he won eight of 10 and earned $194,282, of which $105,000 was in New Jersey competition.

Chosen as NJSS 2-year-old filly pacer of the year, Artcotic, also sired by Artiscape, won four of six New Jersey races and five of seven overall, including the $85,000 NJSS final at Freehold in 1:55.1.

Bamboo Yankee, in the money eight of nine tries, won five races, including a sweep of the NJSS series at Freehold, with a 1:59.2 clocking in the $85,000 final. Overall, the son of Self Possessed was 10 for 12 with $191,230 in purse earnings, $131,327 of which was in NJ-sired competition.

Possess The Magic, a daughter of Self Possessed, won a leg and the $175,000 NJSS final at the Meadowlands in 1:56.1 to earn 2-year-old trotting filly of the year honors. Her overall record was strong with nine wins and 12 of 13 in the money to earn $664,622. Her biggest victory was in the $600,000
Breeders Crown final.

The horses will be honored at the annual New Jersey Equine Awards dinner on Jan. 28 at the Freehold Gardens Hotel. (NJSS)
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