The Inside Track | Issue #44 | September 9, 2022
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In this edition . . .
  • What's happening at the Downs?
  • 3% Cash Back Bonus for Manitoba HPI Customers Continues
  • Chase the Ace Jackpot $6,085 and growing
  • Dining at Assiniboia Downs
  • Bettors Score Big with Longshots
  • Hidden Grace Finishes Career in Style
  • Manitoba-Breds Dominate 2-Year-Old Races
  • Snapshot in Time - Hugo Dittfach
  • Partner Locations
  • Photo of the Week: A Champion Retires
  • Flightline Soars in Placific Classic
  • Queen Elizabeth II Dies at 96
  • Carryover Watch
  • TravyFootball Week 1 Predictions
  • Bob: The Unsung Hero
  • Upcoming Events - Only 7 days of Live Racing left
Do the Downs!
SPIN TO WIN THURSDAYS AND FRIDAYS IN THE CLUB WEST GAMING LOUNGE - Enter at the VLT cage every Thursday and Friday for a chance to spin the wheel for up to $100 cash! Draws will be made every 30 minutes starting at noon.
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  • Jockey bios
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  • Manitoba HPI customers earn 3% cash back when they wager $100 or more on Assiniboia Downs on each of the following days: Monday, September 12, Tuesday, September 13 and Wednesday, September 14. Opt-in at
  • Maximum cash back earned for the September 12 through September 14 promotion period is $25. ($2.10 payouts are not included)
FAN EDUCATION CENTRE - How do I place a bet? What do the odds mean? How do I read the information in the program? If you need answers to the questions above or any other racing questions be sure to stop by the Fan Education Centre on the main floor.

Brad and Matt are happy to assist you every live race night from 6 p.m. until the end of racing. They can also help you open a free HPI online betting account.
every live race night. Ace of Diamonds wins the $6,085 jackpot. Other prizes: Either Joker $100, any other card $25. Tickets are $5 and available at Guest Services from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The draw will be made at 9:30 p.m. Proceeds in support of Final Furlong. Manitoba Jockey Club license LGCA-5630-RF-34975.

Final Furlong is a Manitoba-based charity that helps find good homes for retired racehorses and pony horses. Visit them on Facebook @FinalFurlongCanada.

ENTRY FEE: $50 which you can reduce to zero by predicting three winners on race cards leading up to the tournament. You must have a Manitoba HPI account to participate.

QUALIFY DAILY: Qualify every live race day for a reduced entry fee by picking three winners on the ASD race card. Click here for a list of the current qualifiers as of September 7.

PRIZES: 1st Place: Trip for two to Las Vegas*, 2nd Place: $500, 3rd Place: $250

TOURNAMENT WINNERS: June 27 - Harold Wiens, July 18 - Darcy Penner,
August 8 - Jane Baxter & Peter Colwill (tie), August 29 - Larry Liebrecht.

For more information, tournament rules and qualifying days please email Sheri at

(*The winner of the tournament will be provided $3,500 to book their trip and accommodations to Las Vegas)
Dining at Assiniboia Downs
The Club West Dining Room is open daily at 10 a.m. until 1 a.m. for breakfast, lunch, dinner & snacks. Our menu includes favourites such as chicken wings, pizza, chipotle mozza burger (pictured), steak sandwich or bacon and eggs plus much more! See the full menu here.
Enjoy our fabulous all-you-can-eat Prime Rib buffet every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday during live racing! Buffet highlights include signature certified Angus prime rib of beef carvery, seafood table featuring jumbo shrimp and salmon, fresh salads and side dishes prepared with locally grown vegetables plus much more!

Complimentary programs and tip sheets are included and the table is yours for the evening. Adults - $47.95, Seniors (65+) - $44.95, Kids 12 & under - $27.95, Kids 5 & under - $14.95 Reservations are required. Call 204-885-3330.

Looking for a more casual dining experience during racing? Tables on the plaza (with a view of the track) are available on a first-come-first-served basis. Choose from the Clubhouse a la carte Race Night Menu. The table is yours for the entire evening of racing. Minimum charge $20 per person.
Friday Top Sirloin Steak - $24.95 - 8 oz top Sirloin charbroiled and seasoned with our smoky dry rub. Served with vegetables and choice of mashed potatoes or french fries. Served from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Saturday BBQ St. Louis Ribs - $24.95 - Smoky charbroiled ribs with our signature BBQ sauce. Served with vegetables and choice of mashed potatoes or french fries. Served from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Reservations are not required.
At The Post with G.S. Thompson
Bettors Score Big with Longshots
Lone bettor wins Monday's Jackpot Hi 5 with $24 ticket
Manitoba-bred champions and full-sisters Hidden Grace (#1) and Melisandre (#2) running 1-2 early in the 27th running of the $40,000 Distaff Stakes on Wednesday. They finished in the same order. (Jason Halstead photo)
Longshots capped off the cards on Monday and Tuesday night, setting up boxcar payoffs that included a huge 20-cent Jackpot High 5 and a monster Pick 4.

A single bettor using the betting platform took home $23,681.77 (U.S.) when they cashed the only ticket on the Jackpot High 5 in the seventh race on Monday, and they only spent $24.00.

The ticket used the same four horses in the top four spots with ALL in the fifth spot to take down the whole pool. The ticket structure was 5,6,7,9 with 5,6,7,9 with 5,6,7,9 with 5,6,7,9 with ALL.

The winner, #7 Captive Kitten (42-1) paid $86.60. He might not have seemed logical moving up in class from non-winners of 4 lifetime into open $3,500 claimers, but a wide bullet move on the turn for home under Tyrone Nelson catapulted the 7-year-old gelding to the lead for trainer Victoria Morse and he never looked back. The next four spots in order went to Flash of Glory (11-1), Rail Splitter (1-1), Fulkerson (11-1) and Barley Boy (20-1).

Captive Kitten also triggered a huge $1 Pick 4 payoff of $27,280.30. The winners leading up to the big payoff included Laughing Latinos (6-1) in the fourth face, In the Deep (2-1) in the fifth and Bettin On Belle (6-1) in the sixth race. It should be also noted for hunch players that the winner of the sixth race had the same last name as jockey Shavon Belle.

The $1 Pick 3 paid a whopping $1,170.95, the 20-cent Jackpot Pick 5 paid $2,951.98, the $1 Superfecta paid $9,125.40, the $1 Trifecta returned $2,135.00 and the $1 Exactor paid $435.85.

A longshot ended the card on Tuesday too, when jockey Shavon Belle came charging up the rail late to win the seventh race with Witt and Whiskey ($52.10) for trainer Jerry Gourneau, triggering a $1 Trifecta that paid $1,541.05 and 20-cent Superfecta that paid $1,532.71. And that was with favourite Call the Cops finishing second.

Easy money if you can get it.
Champion Hidden Grace Finishes Career in Style with Big Win
Champion Hidden Grace (Going Commando-High Pioneer by Pioneering) wins the 27th running of the $40,000 Distaff Stakes, the final race of her glorious career, Wednesday night at Assiniboia Downs. Renaldo Cumberbatch up. (Jason Halstead photo)
Jockey Renaldo Cumberbatch was the hot jock of the week, winning two races on Tuesday and following up with a hat trick on Wednesday night that included a victory in the 27th running of the $40,000 Distaff aboard champion Hidden Grace in the final race of her incredible career.

The superbly managed 6-year-old mare by Going Commando-High Pioneer by Pioneering defeated her 4-year-old full sister Melisandre by four lengths in the rich race for Manitoba-breds. Both Hidden Grace and Melisandre are conditioned by Lise Pruitt.

A $15,000 purchase in the 2017 Manitoba CTHS Yearling Sale, Hidden Grace earned just over $400,000 for her owner-breeders Cam Ziprick, Charles Fouillard and Barry Arnason, from a record of 18-4-4 in 27 starts. She'll now be heading to the breeding shed to produce more talented Manitoba-breds, something we’ve seen a lot of lately, especially in races for 2-year-olds.
Manitoba-Breds Dominate in 2-Year-Old Races
Prairie Drifter (Vengeful Wildcat-Naughty Dotty by Rebmec) wins the third race on Tuesday night at Assiniboia Downs. Leroy Nelson up. (Jason Halstead photo)
Of the 11 2-year-old races run this season, eight have been won by Manitoba-breds including: Debutante and Osiris Stakes winner Lady Cop (Vengeful Wildcat-Agolo Bynoe by Successful Appeal), bred by Dr. Betty Hughes, and CTHS Sales Stakes winner I Love My Life (Kentucky Bear-Midnight Shadow by Trajectory), bred by Cam Ziprick and Charles Fouillard.

Additional Maiden Special Weight winners included Mechanic Susie (Nonios-Quantum Mechanics by Einstein) bred by Larry Falloon; Russian Pearl (Nonios-Russian Jewel by Wildcat Heir), bred by Larry Falloon and Denis Huberdeau; and Prairie Drifter (Vengeful Wildcat-Naughty Dotty by Rebmec), bred by Dr. Betty Hughes.

It's rare to see so many 2-year-old races won by Manitoba-breds, but local breeders have poured their hearts, souls and hard-earned money into their breeding stock and it's starting to pay off, not only on the racetrack, but also in the form of lucrative Stallion Awards, Breeder Awards, purses supplements, and in the local yearling sale.

It pays to own a Manitoba-bred.
Manitoba-bred Russian Pearl (Nonios-Russian Jewel by Wildcat Heir) wins the third race on Monday night at Assiniboia Downs. Dwight Lewis in the saddle. (Jason Halstead photo)
A Snapshot in Time
By Track Historian Bob Gates
This week we start our pictorial review of the men who won the Assiniboia Downs riding title in the early years. First up is Hugo Dittfach, who was top jock in the Downs inaugural season. 1958 belong to Hugo, who registered 55 wins in the 42-day meet. In 1959, Dittfach moved his tack down east. He may have been the first to move on from our beloved track, but he wasn’t the only ever to do so. However, loyal fans of the Downs resented the move and whenever he returned to race here in stakes, the hometown crowd was rough on him. (Assiniboia Downs historical photo).
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Photo of the Week
Manitoba-bred champion Hidden Grace walks into retirement with groom Richie Ricketts and trainer Lise Pruitt after winning the final race of her career at Assiniboia Downs Wednesday night, the $40,000 Distaff Stakes. (Jason Halstead photo)
Do you have an interesting photo you would like showcased in an upcoming newsletter? Email us at
In The News
Jaw-dropping victory at Del Mar draws comparisons to all-time greats
All alone at the finish of the Grade 1 Pacific Classic is the unbeaten Flightline, being compared to some of the modern day greats. (Del Mar/Benoit photo)
In one of the most brilliant performances in the history of Del Mar racetrack, unbeaten Flightline (Tapit – Feathered by Indian Charlie) staked his claim as the outstanding older thoroughbred in America with a 19 l/4 length victory in the Grade I, $1 million TVG Pacific Classic Saturday. It was a record winning margin, eclipsing the 12 ½ length triumph by Accelerate in the 2018 Pacific Classic. More from the Canadian Thoroughbred here.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Royal Ascot. (Ascot Racecourse photo)
Queen Elizabeth II died on the afternoon of Sept. 8 at Balmoral at the age of 96, according to a statement from Buckingham Palace. The Queen served as Britain's monarch since the death of her father, King George VI in February 1952. In the equestrian world though, she is known not just for her time on the throne but for her success in the world of Thoroughbred racing and devotion to horsemanship. More from the Paulick Report here.
Sincere Condolences to the Royal Family and the Monarchy of Canada
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the winner's circle at Assiniboia Downs in 1970 for the presentation of the "Queen's Cup" to Manitoba Derby winner Fanfreluche.
Assiniboia Downs and our entire horse racing community offer our sincere condolences to the Royal Family and the Monarchy of Canada.

Longtime local fans will remember that Queen Elizabeth II visited Assiniboia Downs in person for the 1970 Manitoba Centennial Derby and gifted the trophy that annually recognizes the winner of Manitoba's most prestigious race, hence its name, the "Queen's Cup."

Beautiful and forever memories.
Carryover Watch
  • Assiniboia Downs (September 12) - Jackpot Pick 5 carryover $367,123
  • Gulfstream (September 9) - Jackpot Pick 6 carryover $173,765
  • Del Mar (September 9) - Jackpot Pick 6 carryover - $55,029

See all carryovers here.
Top NFL Picks by TravyFootball: Week 1
Bills over Rams (Thursday night): In the opening game of the year, the defending Super Bowl champs will host the Buffalo Bills. Many experts and fans pick Buffalo to go all the way after coming up just a little bit short in the playoffs last year against the Chiefs in overtime. Speaking of that overtime game, the rules were changed during the off season to allow BOTH teams a chance with the ball on offense regardless of who scores first.

A lot of people believe (not me) that if the Bills were given the opportunity for an offensive drive after the chiefs scored, they could have won the game, or at the very least, tied it. Ironically the Bills biggest off season move was signing former Rams defensive stud, Von Miller to a six year contract. So right off the bat he gets to play against his former team. The first game of the year tends to be a little bit sloppy, but I still expect Josh Allen to lead the Bills offense to multiple scoring drives. 
49ers over Bears (Sunday noon): How well my 49ers do is all going to depend on the development of second year signal caller Trey Lance. There is no doubt he is the biggest question mark at quarterback in the entire league this season, because there has been such a small sample size of what he is capable of doing. Luckily, they have the Bears in Week 1, a team that might be competing for worst team in the league along with the Texans, Seahawks, and Commanders. Bears second year QB Justin Fields is hoping a new coach will get him on the right track after a mostly disappointing rookie season. 
Bengals over Steelers (Sunday noon): I think the Steelers will be a REALLY good team… about two years from now. I don’t say that jokingly either. With the nucleus of young players they have, including the likes of Najee Harris, Diontae Johnson, Canadian Chase Claypool and Pat Freiermuth, they will be a force to deal with in the years to come. 

QB Mitch Trubisky was named the starter for the Steelers, but he will be on a very short leash with not a lot of room for error. Every errant pass, every bad decision he makes, will result in the fans screaming for rookie QB Kenny Pickett to replace him. The Steelers took Pickett with the 20th overall selection in the draft, so clearly, they see him as their QB of the future.

The Bengals will be looking to repeat the success they had last year that led them to the Super Bowl. Joe Burrow is still one of the best up and coming QBs in the league but it might be a tough task leading his squad back to the big dance. I do expect them to get the win here though. 
Bob's Blog
by ASD Historian Bob Gates

This week’s honouree on Bob's blog shuns the limelight and it wouldn’t surprise us if many of you aren’t familiar with the man who has been referred to as an "unsung hero." This owner and one-time breeder has been on a 50-year adventure and it’s high time his story gets out there. Click here to learn more about the man behind Hazelridge Holdings and Right Attitude Stables.
Upcoming events at ASD

  • Live Racing - Monday, September 12 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Live Racing - Tuesday, September 13 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Live Racing - Wednesday, September 14 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Together Again - Steve Aoki Concert - Friday, September 16 - more info
  • MICEC Monster Bingo - Saturday, September 17 - more info
  • Live Racing - Monday, September 19 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Live Racing - Tuesday, September 20 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Live Racing - Monday, September 26 - 7:30 p.m.
  • Las Vegas Challenge Handicapping Tournament - Monday, Sept. 26 - more info
  • Final Night of Live Racing - Tuesday, September 27 - 7:30 p.m.
We would love to hear from you! Email your comments and/or suggestions to
The Inside Track Archives
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