VOTERS GIVE NOD TO SLOTS
residents are strongly on board.
Last Saturday North
Saanich citizens voted in a non-binding referendum and a
majority were in favor of slot machines being added to
Sandown Park Raceway.
The vote was 56 per
cent to 44 per cent yes on the simple question: "Are you in
favor of the operation of 150 to 200 slot machines at
Sandown Park Raceway?"
In a remarkable
turnout, 47 per cent of eligible voters cast ballots with
2,102 in favor and 1,641 against.
The matter will now go
before North Saanich Council.
we're thrilled with the result. What we find especially
gratifying is in winning so decisively and with such a large
turnout," said Sandown General Manager Chuck Keeling.
"A lot of North
Saanich residents worked hard to help us win and I want to
thank them," Keeling continued. "I also want to say that we
respect the concerns of those who voted against our
proposal. Our challenge now is to convince them that the
redevelopment of Sandown Park benefits all the residents of
the operator of Sandown Park, is proposing to completely
redevelop Sandown Park. Highlights of the proposal include
investment of $2 to $4 million dollars. The addition of
electronic gaming machines at Sandown Park could generate an
estimated $1 million annually for the District of North
The vote could save
Sandown and ensure the continuation of harness racing at the
SALUTE THE ADMIRAL:
The horse built like an aircraft carrier but who moves like
a coast guard cutter is back.
Red Star Admiral,
owned by Robert Murphy and trained by Bob Merschback, is a
former track record holder at Fraser Downs. However, in 2004
he had struggled, largely due to health and injury problems,
and had only two wins by mid October.
In his first start at
the present Downs meet on Oct. 8 (he previously last raced
June 18 in Calgary) he made a break. After a qualifier on
Oct. 18, he was entered in the non-winners of $6,500 last
six class on Oct. 22 and was second by a neck in a
respectable 1:57.4. On Oct. 29, again at that level, he won,
roaring to a 61/4-length verdict in 1:56 with Rod Therres in
Last Friday the same
combination was back in the Invite and, you guessed it, they
Admiral won in a
furious stretch battle to win by a neck over 3-5 favorite
Infinite Dreams, the winner of the last two Invites.
Spider M and Haras
Colta Cola had set the pace (56.1) to the half. Admiral and
Dreams, who had been assigned the outside seven hole, were
fifth (4 1/2 back) and seventh (seven back) respectively.
Admiral was first up, with Infinite Dreams following, and
had gained the lead on the outside by the three-quarter
pole. Admiral held on, digging in down the stretch as Dreams
kept inching closer.
Red Star Admiral has
now won more than $250,000 in his career.
Spinning keeps winning.
gelded son of Western Hanover is on some kind of a roll with
five wins in a row including a victory Sunday in a $10,000
claiming event. He has captured eight of his last 11 starts
(with two seconds and a fifth).
Owned by Laurie Davis
and Myrna Green and trained and driven by Bill Davis, Keep
Spinning has raced from the $8,000 to $20,000 claiming
levels in those 11 races.
Bill Davis continued his busy, and successful, ways in the
driver derby at Fraser Downs.
The many-time top
driver, who has more than 25 times more starts than any
other driver, has plenty of air between him and top
contender Dave Hudon in wins.
Last weekend, the
first with three days of racing, Davis led all with six
victories. Hudon and Gord Abbott shared second at five wins
while Jim Burke had four, Jim Marino three and Tim Brown and
Rod Therres two each.
The trainer results
were a little more crowded. Ann Cooper, Mike Glover, Davis
and Hudon led the way with three visits to the winner’s
enclosure. Bob Merschback, Bill Young, Laurie Powell and
Brown had two each.
Davis now leads the
meet with 41 wins as a driver while Hudon is next at 29. In
the tight trainer battle, Hudon leads with 15 victories,
Davis has 14 and Brown 13.
Dripping wet and smiling broadly, Darren Howald was the
centre of attention after the last race Friday.
Making the 15th
start of his career, Howald captured his first victory
as a driver, piloting Sim City Central to the decision.
very cool," Howald said after, referring to getting his
first win – and not to his being soaked by several buckets
of water both in the winner’s enclosure and his return to
awesome," he continued. "I knew it had to come sometime but
I didn't know it would come this way."
Howald was probably
thinking that Sim City Central, a 34-1 shot, was not a
But he “wanted to get
clear (of early front-end traffic)” and pulled from the
three-hole to take the lead as they passed the grandstand
for the first time.
He won by a length and
three-quarters over the fast-closing C D Legacy, an 18-1
choice. When Dal Reo Deputy, a 13-1 selection, was third the
resulting triactor was a whopping $7,557.50.
congratulation to Darren, who has worked hard lately to get
to that winner's enclosure.
NEW TRACK FOR
CALGARY: Our good friend Doug Abraham reports that a new
$80-million horse racetrack, complete with hotel and casino
to be located north of the city of Calgary, has cleared its
Abraham said in the
Calgary Herald that the Calgary-based United Horsemen of
Alberta was granted a 10-year horse racing licence for the
complex, to open in the spring of 2007, just outside city
The new complex will
feature a one-mile thoroughbred track surrounding a
seven-furlong standardbred oval. It will feature 1,200 barn
stalls, seating for 7,850 race fans, a simulcast room for
500 people and 500 slot machines.
The $80-million price
tag will be covered by a commitment of $25 million from UHA
board members, while Gateway Casinos Inc. will contribute
$15 million, and Calvent, LLC, owners of Emerald Downs near
Seattle will invest another $10 million. The final $30
million will be borrowed.
Construction on the
103-hectare parcel of land is expected to begin next spring
and wrap up by January 2007. Building permits are in place,
and the group doesn't foresee a problem in securing a gaming
Stampede Park, site of
horse racing for more than 100 years, holds the 2005 racing
licence and will be needed to bridge the action through
SALE SET: Bill
Pambrum, president of the B.C. Standardbred Breeders Society
has returned from the Harrisburg (Pa.) horse sale with five
Once again the BCSBS
will offer the mares, which are in foal, at its B.C.
yearling sale on Tuesday, Nov. 16.
The five are No Dukes,
a 14-year-old by No Nukes and in foal to Dragon Again; Faro
Hanover, an eight-year-old by Cams Card Shark and in foal to
Astreos; Smile Away, a nine-year-old by Die Laughing and in
foal to Life Sign; Property Damage, a 13-year-old by Tyler B
and in foal to Real Artist and Madonna Undersky, a
10-year-old by Robust Hanover and in foal to Camotion.
The sale, which also
includes 115 yearlings, gets under way at 2 p.m. at the
Once again the BCSBS
will be selling credit vouchers with two chances to win – a
$2,500 credit and $1,500 credit – which are transferable.
The vouchers are $20. The draw will take place a half hour
before the start of the yearling sale.
HANDICAPPERS: John Drennan leads the Autumn Classic
handicapping contest after week one.
Drennan won a total of
$172.90 in the event which has contestants handicapping
thoroughbred races from six tracks. There are weekly prizes
but the grand prize is $2,500 cash and the right to
represent Fraser Downs Racetrack and Casino at the World
Series of Handicapping in Las Vegas.
Louis Neering is
second with $160.60 while Jerome Lee is third at $154.90.
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