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by George Stubbs
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The 48th annual Eclipse Awards were held Thursday night in the Sport of Kings Thatre at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida, honoring the champions of North American racing in 2018. Of the 271 eligible voters representing the NTRA, the NTWAB and Daily Racing Form, 249 (91.9%) took part in this year's voting. Finalists were determined in each category by voters' top three selections, using a 10-5-1 point basis. Eclipse Award winners are determined solely by first place votes, and there was one unanimous selection this year.
Justify winning the Kentucky Derby (G1)
Monomoy Girl winning the Coaching Club American Oaks (G1)
Sistercharlie after winning the Diana Stakes (G1)
Joe Harper, the chief executive officer of the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, was given the Award of Merit in recognition of a lifetime of outstanding achievement in Thoroughbred racing, guiding the seaside track through a period of sustained growth and success. After serving as executive vice president at the Oak Tree Racing Association, he moved to a similar role at Del Mar in 1978. He introduced the $1 million Pacific Classic (G1) in 1990, oversaw the reconstruction and opening of the new $80 mllion grandstand in 1993, and brought the Breeders' Cup World Championships to the San Diego County track in 2017.
Roy H repeated as Champion Male Sprinter and Unique Bella added a Champion Older Female title to her Champion Female Sprinter title from last year in the equine categories. Trainer Chad Brown added a third Outstanding Trainer title to his resume. Roy H is the only horse to win both the Breeders' Cup Sprint and the Eclipse Award for male sprinter in consecutive years.
All the winners for 2018 are listed below with the actual vote totals. A link to a full profile is given for each horse. To see all this years finalists, check here. You can look up past year's winners here. You can see how the awards are decided here.
Horse of the Year: Justify
Voting: Justify, 191; Accelerate, 54; Monomoy Girl, 2; Enable, 1; Voter Abstention, 1.
Two-Year-Old Male: Game Winner
Voting: Game Winner, 247; Bulletin, 1; Knicks Go, 1.
Two-Year-Old Filly: Jaywalk
Voting: Jaywalk, 214; Newspaperofrecord, 31; Bellafina, 4.
Champion Three-Year-Old Male: Justify
Voting: Justify, 249.
Champion Three-Year-Old Filly: Monomoy Girl
Voting: Monomoy Girl, 247; Magical, 1; Rushing Fall, 1.
Older Male: Accelerate
Voting: Accelerate, 245; Justify, 2; Discreet Lover, 1; Roy H, 1.
Older Female: Unique Bella
Voting: Unique Bella, 182; Abel Tasman, 34; Marley's Freedom, 14; Blue Prize (ARG), 9; Wow Cat (CHI), 9; Voter Abstention, 1.
Male Sprinter: Roy H
Voting: Roy H, 234; City of Light, 9; Imperial Hint, 3; Stormy Liberal, 2; Mind Your Biscuits, 1.
Female Sprinter: Shamrock Rose
Voting: Shamrock Rose, 136; Marley's Freedom, 113.
Male Turf Horse: Stormy Liberal
Voting: Stormy Liberal, 85; Expert Eye, 66; Glorious Empire, 43; Catholic Boy 14; Heart to Heart, 12; Catapult, 8; Channel Maker, 7; Raging Bull, 7; Robert Bruce, 2; Funtastic, 1; Oscar Performance, 1; Yoshida 1; voter abstentions, 2.
Female Turf Horse: Sistercharlie
Voting: Sistercharlie, 130; Enable, 119.
Voting: Zanjabeel, 176; Optimus Prime, 22; Jury Duty, 12; Iranistan, 4; Balance the Budget, 1; voter abstentions, 34.
Owner: Hronis Racing
Voting: Hronis Racing LLC, 142; Peter Brant, 27; WinStar Farm, China Horse Club Intl., Starlight Racing, Head of Plains Partners, 25; Calumet Farm, 8; Klaravich Stables, Inc., 8; Godolphin Racing, 6; End Zone Athletics, 5; WinStar Farm, 5; Rockingham Ranch and David Bernsen, 4; Sol Kumin 3; Michael Dubb, Monomoy Stables, The Elkstone Group, Bethlehem Stables, 2; China Horse Club, 1; China Horse Club, Head of Plains Partners, 1; Juddmonte Farms, 1; Loooch Racing Stables, 1; Voter Abstentions, 10.
Breeder: John D. Gunther
Voting: John D. Gunther, 102; WinStar Farm, LLC, 68; Mike Abraham, 21; Calumet Farm, 14; Fred Hertrich III & John D. Fielding, 13; Juddmonte Farms, 8; Summer Wind Equine, 5; Kenneth & Sarah Ramsey, 3; Brereton C. Jones, 2; Besilu Stables, 1; FPF LLC & Highfield Ranch, 1; Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings, 1; Spendthrift Farm, 1; Voter Abstentions, 9.
Trainer: Chad Brown
Voting: Chad Brown, 137; Bob Baffert, 94; Steve Asmussen, 6; Brad Cox, 4; John Sadler, 2; Karl Broberg, 2; Jason Servis, 1; Jerry Hollendorfer, 1. Voter Abstentions, 2.
Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.
Voting: Irad Ortiz, Jr., 173; Mike Smith, 40; Jose Ortiz, 25; Joel Rosario, 8; Florent Geroux, 1; Javier Castellano, 1; Voter Abstentions, 1.
Apprentice Jockey: Weston Hamilton
Voting: Weston Hamilton, 115; Edgar Morales, 87; Reylu Gutierrez, 11; Heriberto Figueroa, 7; Kazushi Kimura, 3; Assael Espinoza, 2; Evin Roman, 1; Johan Rosado, 1; Voter Abstentions, 22.
The Media Eclipse Awards were announced on January 4 and the winners can be viewed here:
How the Awards are Decided
The old three-bloc voting system was replaced in 2003 with a one vote per person system, where every voter's selection is weighted equally. Voters rank their top three selections in each of the 16 voting categories and points are awarded on a 10-5-1 basis. The voting point system determines the three finalists in each category, but the winner is determined by first-place votes only.
More about the Eclipse Awards:
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