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Talking shop with MHBA president Willie White

AL MML2016 WillieWhite 2Robert “Willie” White used to buy the VHS tapes of his horses’ defeats. Before that, he peppered his trainer Ham Smith with so many questions at the barn that Smith would hand White a shank and make him a hotwalker. Before that, White and his friends would sneak into the Washington, D.C., International Day races at Laurel Park. And before that, he would ask his mom to drive past Laurel on the way home from the grocery store so he could see the horses.

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The Jockey Club releases 2016 Report of Mares Bred statistics

Maryland was one of two states ranked in the top 10 to see an increase of mares bred to its stallions in 2016. A total of 913 mares were bred in Maryland in 2016 compared to 788 in 2015, an astonishing increase of 15.86 percent, even with a slight decrease in number of stallions reported (32 stallions in 2016 compared to 36 in 2015). The only other state to have an increase was Kentucky, up slightly by 1.73 percent.

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Redeemed gets first winner

Redeemed.4Multiple graded stakes winner Redeemed, who entered stud at Northview Stallion Station in Chesapeake City in 2013, got his first winner when his 2-year-old son Cherokee Spirit galloped home three lengths on top at Laurel Park on Sunday, Oct. 9.

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Maryland-bred champions of 2017 announced at inaugural Renaissance Awards

Skeedattle Associates’ Just Howard, winner of the Grade 3 Commonwealth Derby at Laurel Park as part of a four-race win streak over the summer of 2017, took home top honors as Maryland-bred Horse of the Year, champion 3-year-old male and champion turf horse. The announcments were made at the inaugural Renaissance Awards, a cooperative effort between the Maryland Horse Breeders Association, Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association and Maryland Jockey Club created to recognize excellence in Thoroughbred racing and breeding in Maryland in 2017. The event was held on Monday evening, Feb. 12, at the Sagamore Pendry hotel in Baltimore.

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2017 Maryland Breeder, Broodmare and Stallion of the Year Awards

Breeder of the Year: HOWARD M. BENDER

Longtime Maryland breeder Howard Bender, one of the state’s most admired and respected figures, earned his fifth Maryland Breeder of the Year award posthumously for a year in which runners he bred earned more than $1.2 million and included Maryland-bred champion finalists Blu Moon Ace and Just Howard.

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2017 Annual Top 2-Year-Old Rankings

Bolt d’Oro, a multiple Grade 1 winner, and Good Magic, winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile-G1, were both assigned the high weight of 126 pounds to top The Jockey Club’s Annual Top 2-Year-Old Rankings, formerly known as the Experimental Free Handicap, for 2017. The highest weighted filly, at 123 pounds, was Caledonia Road, winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies-G1.

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