Owner Rick Porter of Fox Hill Farm’s retired 2011 Horse of the Year Havre de Grace, also known as Grace, on Sunday after a front right ankle injury was detected after a Churchill Downs workout.
Havre de Grace, the 5-year-old daughter of Saint Liam, and the 2005 Horse of the Year, was bred by Nancy Dillman in Kentucky with mare Easter Bunnette of Carson City.
Trained by Larry Jones, seen above, she retired with career earnings of $2,586,175.
From 1912 to 1950 (with the exceptions of a shut down during World War II), the Maryland track hosted two meets. The spring meet served as one of the key destinations for colts bound for the Kentucky Derby. The fall meet attracted some of the best handicap horses in country for races like the Havre de Grace Handicap.
Racing at Havre de Grace attracted high-class horses, well-heeled owners, and the best trainers and jockeys in the country. According to a local journalist, the track made the small Maryland town “famous”.
Considering the current success of boutique meets at Del Mar, Saratoga, and Keeneland, it’s hard not to think what might have been had the track survived.
You Tube-Havre de Grace put herself squarely in the race for Horse of the Year honors in September 3rd, 2011 at Saratoga Race Course, powering into the lead with 200 yards to go and pulling clear to a rousing 1 ¼-length victory over seven males in the 58th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Woodward. “One minute 39 seconds flat, the filly did it!” The race called by world-enowned announcer Tom Durkin.
So a filly named after a once famous race course takes her bow. And, a little history about a once world famous town that was, the filly that was but in so many regards, a standout winner. And, a girl from Havre de Grace, Maryland saddened that a world champion filly Havre de Grace, has had her last run all due to an unexpected injury, Saratoga!