The Inside Track | Issue #87 | July 7, 2023
  • Open daily from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
  • VLTs, Race Carrels and Tables are sanitized between customer use.
In this edition . . .
  • What's happening at the Downs?
  • Live Racing Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday
  • ASD Player Portal
  • Chase the Ace at ASD
  • Las Vegas Challenge Tournament this Monday
  • Dining at ASD
  • Chef's Specials
  • Nault, Gittens Win First 2-Year-Old Races
  • RCMP Musical Ride
  • Snapshot in Time - Tom Dodds
  • Woodbine Oaks, King's Plate Updates
  • Carryover Watch
  • Dark Horse Bets Download
  • Bob's Blog -- Mr. Amazing
  • Upcoming Events
Do the Downs!
Live Racing this Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.
  • Jackpot Pick 5 carryover $337,109 (last five races)
  • $50,000 Guaranteed Pick 4 (last four races)
  • New to the races? Be sure to stop by and see Brad and Shannon. They will answer all your questions about racing and wagering.
  • Download the Dark Horse Betting App, open a new account and get $30 in free wagers.
  • Free Family Fun activities every Monday through Sept. 4. Bouncy Castles, face painting, live entertainment. 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Free admission and free parking daily.
  • Can't make it to the track? Watch and wager at
  • See full ASD schedule here.
ASD Player Portal
Get all the information on Assiniboia Downs racing in one convenient place! The ASD Player Portal features the following FREE information:

  • Link to watch ASD Live Racing on our YouTube channel
  • ASD Live with Kirt & Stretch
  • Free ASD programs
  • ASD expert picks
  • Horse Racing Nation power picks
  • Charting Horse Value charts
  • Trust The Prophets Monday handicapping live stream
  • Brisnet premium pps
  • Jockey bios
  • Photo finish photos

All of the above information is free of charge and available on the ASD Player Portal.
Week #8 Tickets on Sale Now!

Tickets for Chase the Ace Week #8 are on sale now with a $5,000 Guaranteed Accumulator Jackpot if someone picks the Ace of Diamonds!

Manitoba Jockey Club - LGCA-5630-RF-39799
2023 Las Vegas Challenge Handicapping Tournaments

  • Las Vegas Challenge - This Monday, July 10
  • Las Vegas Challenge - Monday, July 31
  • Las Vegas Challenge - Monday, August 21
  • Las Vegas Challenge - Monday, September 18

PRIZES: The tournament winner receives a trip for two to Las Vegas and a trophy (the winner will be provided $3,500 to book their trip to Las Vegas). Second place finisher will receive a $500 deposit to their HPI account, the third place finisher will receive a $250 deposit to their HPI account.

Entry fee into the Las Vegas Challenge is $50 but can be reduced by qualifying on Assiniboia Downs’ race cards leading up to the tournament. To qualify you must select the horse that you think will win each race on the Assiniboia Downs race card. Email your selections for that race night to Sheri at prior to the start of racing. If you select three winners on the race card, your entry fee is reduced to $25. For every other race card that you select three winners on your entry fee is reduced by another $5. 

  • Monday, June 19 - Ron Zurba
Winnipeg Goldeyes Night at ASD

  • Monday, July 17 starting at 6:30 p.m.
  • Player photos & autographs starting at 6:15 p.m.
  • Enter to win a Goldeyes jersey.
  • Giveaways & activities plus meet Goldie the mascot!
  • Free family fun activities including bouncy castles, face painting & more!
Club West Gaming Lounge

140 VLTs available daily in our spacious Club West Gaming Lounge from 10 a.m. through 1 a.m. Please note that our VLTs are sanitized between play. Click here for a full list of games available at ASD.

Win CA$H Every Day!

  • Draws to win up to $100 cash on our lucky wheel Monday through Friday from noon until 5 p.m.

  • Draws for $20 FREE VLT Spins Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Dining at Assiniboia Downs
Club West Dining Room & Lounge Open Daily

Enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks plus Happy Hour food and beverage specials in our Club West Dining Room & Lounge! Open daily from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.

  • Club West Dining Room & Lounge menu
  • Daily Happy Hour specials
Chef's Weekend Specials
Friday Steak & Suds $24.95: 8 oz. Sirloin steak charbroiled and seasoned with our smoky dry rub. Served with fresh vegetables and a choice of mashed potatoes or french fries. Plus a complimentary pint of ASD Lucky Lager.

Saturday Prime & Wine $29.95: Certified Angus Prime Rib (8 oz.) cut. Served with fresh vegetables and a choice of mashed potatoes or french fries, horseradish, and Yorkshire pudding au jus. Plus a complimentary 6 oz. glass of house wine.

Sunday Fish & Chips $14.95: Two pieces of beer battered cod with tartar sauce and lemon. Served with french fries and coleslaw.

Add a starter Caesar salad, tossed salad or soup of the day to any of the above specials for $3.95. Served from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Reservations are not required.
Live Racing Buffets

Book your table for our Certified Angus Prime Rib Buffet! It's available every race night in the Terrace Dining Room.

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.

Rotating entree selections of tender grilled chicken, crispy fried fish, sticky BBQ ribs, roasted meats and artisan sausages. Dessert table features warm fresh baked pies and your choice of ice cream plus cheesecakes, tortes and our famous bourbon bacon brownie.

The table is yours for the entire evening and includes racing programs and tip sheets.

Adults - $49.95, Seniors (65+) - $46.95, Kids 12 & under - $29.95, Kids 5 & under - $16.95

Reservations are required. Call 204-885-3330 to book your table today! Click here for our 2023 racing schedule.
At The Post with G.S. Thompson
Nault, Gittens Win First 2-Year-Old Races of Season
Gourneau opens up in trainer standings, new apprentice in town
Groom Charlotte Johnston with the first 2-year-old winner of the season at ASD, Silver Jaguar, in trainer Mike Nault's barn. (George Williams photo)
Trainers Mike Nault and Devon Gittens won the first 2-year-old races of the meet on Tuesday, Jerry Gourneau opened a big lead in the trainer standings, and a new apprentice from B.C. made a notable appearance in another week of million-dollar-plus handles.

Nault won the Ardell Sayler Memorial, the first 2-year-old race of the year on Tuesday night, with Manitoba-bred Silver Jaguar (Nonios-San Diego Nights), for a large ownership group that includes Garry Naherniak, Dayman Gullas, Rheanne Gray, Dave Ledoux and A2 Thoroughbreds. Bred by Vailla Kay Butler, the nice moving bay gelding was bought privately after the CTHS Manitoba Yearling Sale last year after a final bid of $6,500.

Groomed by Charlotte Johnston and ridden by Chavion Chow, Silver Jaguar showed good character to win by a neck over fellow Manitoba-bred Justlemmeatem (Vengeful Wildcat), conditioned by Devon Gittens for owner/breeder Dr. Betty Hughes. Justlemmeatem was bid up to $3,500 at the yearling sale before being bought back by Hughes.

Both horses could turn out to be bargains.
Silver Jaguar wins the first 2-year-old race of the season on Tuesday, the Ardell Sayler Memorial, for trainer Mike Nault and ownership partners Garry Naherniak, Dayman Gullas, Rheanne Gray, Dave Ledoux and A2 Thoroughbreds. (Jason Halstead photo)
Both Nault and Gittens had their horses ready to rock at first asking, and Gittens wasn’t to be denied in the second 2-year-old race of the year, which he won with Canyouhearmerunnin (Reload-Joaquina by Holy Bull). A $6,000 purchase at the 2022 CTHS Ontario Yearling Sale, the leggy chestnut gelding is another one that could prove to be a bargain for owner Pink Cloud Racing.

Groomed by Devon Gittens’ brother Rheco, who previously worked for Tanya Lindsay, Canyouhearmerunnin won by 3 ¾-lengths and paid a whopping $21.30 to win, giving jockey Shavon Belle his first victory of the year. Congrats Shavon!
Jockey Shavon Belle gets a high five from trainer Devon Gittens on Tuesday after scoring his first victory of the season aboard Canyouhearmerunnin. (Jason Halstead photo)
On the subject of jockeys, new apprentice jockey Fraser Aebly arrived on the scene from Hastings Park in B.C., picked up one mount in the last race on Wednesday, and immediately impressed trainers and handicappers who were paying attention.

Pressing three-wide between horses into the turn on 10-1 shot What Up Now J T for trainer Marvin Buffalo, Aebly could have easily backed out and wilted, but he rode his horse all the way to the wire to finish a solid second behind heavy favourite Cyclone Sorority. The 19-year-old bug boy won 11 races at Hastings Park and apparently plans to ride both there and at Assiniboia Downs for the remainder of the season.

Another notable ride this week came from Ronald Ali aboard favoured Delvecchio for trainer Tom Gardipy, Jr., and not because he won, but because of how he did it. Delvecchio has won nine of his 34 lifetime starts, but always seems to either duel or find trouble. Not this time. Ali rated the 7-year-old beautifully and gave Delvecchio the duel-stalking trip he’s been asking for his entire career.
Canyouhearmerunnin enjoying a grassy coffee break outside trainer Devon Gittens barn with groom Rheco Gittens. (George Williams photo)
Renaldo Cumberbatch and Sven Balroop topped all jockeys on the week with three wins each, while Jorge Carreno edged closer to leading rider Antonio Whitehall in the standings with a pair of victories. Whitehall now holds a 20-17 edge over Carreno and this could turn out to be a real battle.

Jerry Gourneau and Devon Gittens led all trainers with three victories apiece and Gourneau opened a good lead in the trainer standings with 17 wins, five more than Jared Brown and Tom Gardipy, Jr. And kudos to trainers Marvin Buffalo and Mike Taphorn. Buffalo won once and Taphorn won twice and both are now 7-for-16. By the numbers, that’s a 44 percent win clip. In a word...

Canyouhearmerunnin and jockey Shavon Belle win the second 2-year-old race of the season for trainer Devon Gittens and owner Pink Cloud Racing. (Jason Halstead photo)
RCMP Musical Ride
Tickets on sale now!
The 150th Anniversary Tour

The spectacular RCMP Musical Ride will arrive in Winnipeg July 28th and July 29th to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Two performances will take place at Assiniboia Downs. The first one on Friday, July 28th and the second one on Saturday July 29th.

The RCMP Musical Ride is a symbol of tradition, honour, and pride. The Musical Ride is a Canadian icon recognized at home and abroad. The troop of up to 32 riders, who are all police officers, and their horses perform intricate formations and drills set to music, lasting about 30 minutes. These movements demand the utmost control, timing, and coordination.

Friday, July 28
  • Musical Ride starts at 7:00 p.m.
  • Meet and Greet to follow show
  • Doors open at 5:30 p.m.
  • All seating is rush seating.
  • Food and beverage service is available.
  • Tickets $15 (including taxes & fees). Kids 5 & under free.
  • Tickets are available online using the link below or in person at Assiniboia Downs (VLT cage, General Office & Guest Services during live racing).
  • Get your tickets today!!

Saturday, July 29
  • Musical Ride starts at 1:30 p.m.
  • Meet and Greet to follow show
  • Doors open at 12:00 noon
  • All seating is rush seating.
  • Food and beverage service is available.
  • Tickets $15 (including taxes & fees). Kids 5 & under free.
  • Tickets are available online using the link below or in person at Assiniboia Downs (VLT cage, General Office & Guest Services during live racing).
  • Get your tickets today!!
July HPI Cash Back Specials

  • COUNTDOWN TO THE MANITOBA DERBY: Earn one entry for every $50 you wager on Assiniboia Downs during the month of July. Five draws will be made for a $500 wager on the Manitoba Derby, an invitation to the Manitoba Derby Media Conference and a buffet for two in the Terrace Dining Room on Manitoba Derby Night. Opt-in at All wagers must be placed on your HPI account.
  • SARATOGA OPENING DAY SPECIAL: Earn 5% cash back on all eligible wagers on Saratoga, Thursday, July 13. ($2.10 payouts are not eligible). Minimum $100 wagered. Maximum payout $25. Opt-in at All wagers must be placed on your HPI account.
  • DEL MAR OPENING DAY SPECIAL: Earn 4% cash back on all eligible wagers on Del Mar, Friday, July 21. ($2.10 payouts are not eligible). Minimum $100 wagered. Maximum payout $25. Opt-in at All wagers must be placed on your HPI account.
The 75th Running of the Manitoba Derby
Presented by Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries
Monday, August 7
Racing starts at 7:30 p.m.
  • $125,000 Manitoba Derby for 3-year olds presented by Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries
  • 1st Leg of the $550,000 Western Canadian Triple Crown
  • $50,000 Harvey Warner Manitoba Mile for 3-year-olds & upward
  • $50,000 Escape Clause Stakes for Fillies & Mares 3-year-olds & upward
  • $100,000 Guaranteed Pick 4 (last four races)
  • Mandatory payout of the ASD Jackpot Pick 5 (if not won prior to)
  • Derby Sweepstakes. Win a $100 win wager on a Derby horse!
  • Family Fun! Bouncy castles, face painting & kids entertainment from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm
  • Special Derby history display by Track Historian Bob Gates
  • Free admission & free parking
Carryover Watch
  • Assiniboia Downs (July 10) - Jackpot Pick 5 carryover $337,109
  • Belmont Park (July 7) - Pick 6 carryover $138,216
  • Parx (July 10) - Jackpot Pick 5 carryover $136,080

MANDATORY PAYOUT: The Belmont Park meet ends Sunday, July 9 and all carryover pools will be forced out on this day.

See all carryovers here.
Can't make it to the track to wager?
Watch and wager at one of our off-track betting locations:

"I Won Bigg" Wagering Group

The "I Won Bigg" wagering group will be playing Assiniboia Downs every Wednesday. $20 per share. Email Larry at for more information.
A Snapshot in Time
by Track Historian Bob Gates
Trainer Tom Dodds spent the better part of 27 race meets at Assiniboia Downs from 1974 to 2012. Pictured above with the classy Sunraysed and jockey Clifford Thompson in 1978, "Doddsie" is now retired, but before he locked-up his barn he won: 690 races, five Downs’ leading trainer titles, and 78 races in 1990, a single-season training record at the Downs. Tom is one of only three trainers to win three consecutive training titles here, and in 1994 he won the Manitoba Derby with P.C.’s Bluff. How would you feel about having your barn stocked with horses like Nephrite, S.S. Pee Wee and Mr. Winston? And just in case you’re wondering, we're told Tom has also retired the hat in the above photo. (Gerry Hart Photo).
In The News
The Oaks is just over two weeks away and it's starting to look like any local 3-year-old filly could win; Plate hopeful 'Invader' may pass
Award winning photographer Santino DiPaola captured this image of Woodbine Oaks contender Tito's Calling before her Selene Stakes (G3) run.
The Canadian Thoroughbred’s top contenders for the July 23 Woodbine Oaks and August 20 King’s Plate are entered in major stakes events on Saturday, July 8 at Belmont Park. More from Jennifer Morrison here.
Bob's Blog
by ASD Historian Bob Gates
The subject of this week’s blog story was known as "Mr. Amazing." Any guesses as to his identity before clicking on the link to the story? Before getting involved with the training of racehorses, our mystery man trained dogs and was considered an animal wrangler. Now there’s a term we don’t hear a lot of in our history blog. Click here to reveal the man who started working with a host of animals before turning to training thoroughbreds. 
Upcoming events at ASD
  • Spin to Win in the Club West Gaming Lounge - Monday to Friday - more info
  • Lucky Spins - Draws for $20 free VLT Spins - Friday to Sunday - more info
  • ASD Live Racing Mondays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. - more info
  • Countdown to the Manitoba Derby HPI promo - more info
  • Free Family Fun Nights every Monday in July & August - more info
  • Manitoba Night Market & Festival - Sunday, July 23 - more info
  • RCMP Musical Ride - Friday, July 28 - more info
  • RCMP Musical Ride - Saturday, July 29 - more info
  • Manitoba Derby Night - Monday, August 7 - more info
We would love to hear from you! Email your comments and/or suggestions to
The Inside Track Archives
Did you know that past issues of The Inside Track are available on our website? Click here to read them now.