Ten finalists named for hall of fame of Racing

Ten finalists have been named on the 2014 hall of fame ballot for the National Museum of Racing. There are four thoroughbreds, four jockeys and a pair of trainers named on the ballots with the voting being done by the Hall of Fame Nominating Committee.

The jockeys are Alex Solis, Chris Antley, Craig Perret and Garrett Gomez. The thoroughbreds are Curlin, Ashado, Xtra Heat and Kona Gold while the trainers are Gary Jones and Steve Asmussen. Curlin, Kona Gold and Asmussen are all first-time finalists. The voters are allowed to choose as many of the candidates they like when voting for the hall of fame induction. However, just the four candidates with the most votes will be inducted.

Antley was on board for 3,480 victories during his career and had $92,261,894 in total purse earnings. His career began in 1983 and lasted until 2000. He won 293 stakes with 127 of them being graded stakes. Antley also won the Preakness once and the Kentucky Derby twice (1991 and 1999) and led North American racing with 469 wins in 1985.

Gomez has won a total of 3,769 races and his purse earnings are $205,224,899. His career kicked off in 1998 and he’s won 566 stakes overall with 318 being graded stakes. He was honoured with the Eclipse Award in 2007 and 2008 as the Outstanding Jockey. He also led North American jockeys in earnings from 2006 to 2009 and has 13 Breeders’ Cup victories.

Perret’s career lasted from 1967 to 2005 and he took 4,415 races in total for $113,837,299 in career purse earnings. He won the Eclipse Award in 1990 as Outstanding Jockey and the same year won the Kentucky Derby when he rode Unbridled. He also won the 1987 Belmont Stakes aboard Bet Twice as well as four Breeders’ Cup events.

Solis began his career in 1982 and he has won a total of 4,980 races for $234,665,846 in purse earnings. He’s won 633 stakes with 321 being graded. He has captured three Breeders’ Cup races and won the Preakness in 1986 aboard Snow Chief. Solis is currently ranked number 30 in wins and ninth in all-time earnings.

As far as the horses go, Ashado started 21 races during her career and won 12 of them for $3,931,440 in purse earnings. In 2004 the horse was named the champion three-year-old female and a year later was named champion older female. Ashado was trained by Todd Pletcher.

Curlin had 16 career starts and took 11 of them. The horse also holds the North American record for the most purse earnings ever at $10,501,800. Asmussen trained Curlin for most of the horse’s career and it was named horse of the year in 2007 as well as the champion three-year-old male. He was named the horse of the year again in 2008 as well as the champion older male.

Kona Gold won 14 out of his 30 career starts and earned $2,293,384 in purse money. In 2000 he was named the champion sprinter and finished second in horse of the tear voting. At the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, the horse broke the race’s and the Churchill Downs six-furlong record with a time of 1:07.77.

Xtra Heat started 35 career races and won 26 of them for $2,389,635 in purse earnings. She was trained by John Salzman Sr. and in 2001 was named the champion three-year-old filly. Twice during her career Xtra Heat had six-race winning streaks and won a total of 10 stakes races.

Trainer Asmussen has 6,703 wins to his credit along with $214,030,552 in purse earnings since kicking off his career in 1986. He’s ranked number two in all-time wins and number five in earnings. He took home the Eclipse Award in 2008 and 2009 as outstanding trainer. He has led the way nine times during his career in wins for North American trainers and three times came in first for earnings. He’s won 752 stakes overall with 164 being graded stakes. Asmussen won a record 650 races in 2009 and trained Rachel Alexandra as the horse of the year in 2009. In 2007 and 2008 had trained Curlin to the same honour.

Jones had 1,465 wins in his career between 1975 and 1996 along with $52,672,611 in purse earnings. He won 233 stakes with 102 of them being graded stakes. Jones trained a total of 104 stakes-winning horses during his career and trained Kostroma to a world turf record of 1:43 ⅘ at the 1 ⅛-mile Las Palmas Handicap.

There were originally 84 candidates on the ballot and they were narrowed down to 10. To be eligible for selection the trainers must have been active for at least 25 years and the jockeys for 20 years. The thoroughbreds need to be retired for at least five years and every candidates had to have been active in the last 25 years.

The final results of the voting will be made public on April 25 and the free, public induction ceremony is scheduled to take place on August 8 at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion which is located in Saratoga Springs.

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