The Inside Track | Issue #73 | March 31, 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?
  • 2023 Handicapping Tournaments
  • Dining at ASD
  • Chef's Specials Continue
  • Nault Looking Forward to Big Year
  • Boehmer wins Provincial Curling Championship
  • Call for Foal Photos
  • Speculating colt for Lambert and Mathews
  • Nonios filly for Prairie Crocus Racing Club
  • 2023 Shipping Incentives
  • 2023 Live Racing Dates/Purses/Stakes
  • ASD Condition Book #1 Download
  • 2023 Florida Derby Cheat Sheet
  • 2023 Arkansas Derby Analysis
  • Steve Haskin's Derby Rankings
  • Snapshot in Time: Polo Park
  • Carryover Watch
  • The Best of Bob: G. Sydney Halter
  • Upcoming Events
Do the Downs!
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. One lucky person won $750 on Sunday with their free spins!
2023 Player's Choice Online Handicapping Tournaments

  • Saturday, April 15, 2023
  • Saturday, May 13, 2023

Entry fee: $25. Bankroll: $60. Place 10 ($2 WPS) wagers on any North American race that takes place on the contest day. You must have a Manitoba HPI account to participate. Deadline to enter is 4 p.m. the Friday before the tournament. For complete list of 2023 handicapping tournaments click here.
April HPI Cash Back Specials

  • SATURDAY, APRIL 1st BONUS: Earn 2% cash back on all tracks on all eligible wagers on Saturday, April 1. Minimum wagered $100. Maximum cash back $25. ($2.10 payouts are not eligible.) Opt-in at All wagers must be placed on your HPI account.

  • TREMENDOUS TUESDAYS: Earn 3% cash back every Tuesday in April on all tracks on all eligible wagers. Minimum wagered $100 (each Tuesday). Maximum cash back $25 (each Tuesday). ($2.10 payouts are not eligible.) Opt-in at All wagers must be placed on your HPI account.
Watch for the Easter Bunny

The Easter Bunny will be making his rounds on Easter weekend with wagering vouchers in his basket!

  • Good Friday, April 7 the Easter Bunny will be at Assiniboia Downs. Enter for your chance to pick an Easter Egg from his basket. Each egg contains a wagering voucher from $5 to $50.
  • The Easter Bunny will also be visiting the off-track locations Friday, April 7, Saturday, April 8 & Sunday, April 9 so be sure to keep an eye out for him!

Please note that Assiniboia Downs is open regular hours from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Easter weekend - Friday, April 7, Saturday, April 8 & Sunday, April 9 with VLTs, horse racing and dining available all three days.
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.

Friday & Saturday Value Added Specials
Friday Steak & Suds $24.95: 8 oz. Sirloin steak charbroiled and seasoned with our smoky dry rub. Served with fresh vegetables and 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 choice of mashed potatoes or french fries, horseradish and Yorkshire pudding au jus. Plus a complimentary 6 oz. glass of house wine.

Served from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Reservations are not required.
Easter Brunch - Sunday, April 9 - SOLD OUT
Mother's Day Brunch - Sunday, May 14

  • Signature Certified Angus Prime Rib
  • Carved ham with grilled pineapple
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Omelette station
  • Eggs benedict
  • French toast
  • Bacon, sausage and hash browns
  • Assortment of salads
  • Cheese and kolbassa tray
  • Pickle tray
  • Smoked salmon pizza
  • Croissants, rolls, flatbread, butter
  • Sliced fruit and berries, chilled juices, coffee and tea
  • Dessert and pastry table featuring cakes, dainties, warm apple crumble
  • This is a ticketed event. Prices are subject to taxes & gratuities.
  • Adults $44.95, 12 & under $21.95, 5 & under $9.95
  • Tickets are selling fast so get yours today!
  • Please note that there is no live racing on this day.
At The Post with G.S. Thompson
Trainer Mike Nault Looking Forward to Big Year
25-horse stable includes both stakes winners and well-bred 2-year-olds
Grooms Brittany Bergen (left), Charlotte (centre) and Olive Johnston with former champion 2-year-old Diamond Digger in trainer Mike Nault's barn. Note those smiles! (George Williams photo)
There are over 200 horses on the grounds already and we’re still 52 days away from opening day!

Trainers with horses on the grounds include Mike Nault, Shelley Brown, Wendy Anderson, Devon Gittens, Steve Gaskin, Blair Miller, Mike Taphorn, Larry Cizik, Tiffany Husbands, Curtis Maxwell, Ryan Desjarlais, Wendy Anderson, Jennifer Jordan, Lise Pruitt, Carl Anderson, Courtney Ross and Elton Dickey. Whew!

And there’s probably more!

Numerous trainers will have powerful stables this year, and that group includes Mike Nault, who not only has a great bunch of horses, but also an excellent crew that includes grooms Brittany Bergen and sisters Charlotte and Olive Johnston.

Nault had another big year in 2022 training for major owners True North Thoroughbreds and A2 Thoroughbreds and he’s hoping for more of the same this season with 25 horses that include seven well-bred youngsters along with stakes winners like Lady Cop and It’sthattime. The former won the Debutante and Osiris Stakes last year and the latter won the R.J. Speers and Elite Mercedes Stakes.

Nault will also have triple stakes winner Diamond Digger back in action at Assiniboia Downs this year. The 4-year-old Violence gelding only started twice last year, once at Santa Anita and once at Assiniboia Downs, before being give the year off to recover from a minor injury. Diamond Digger was the dominant 2-year-old at the Downs in 2021, winning the Graduation Stakes, the Osiris Stakes and the Winnipeg Futurity.

“He’s training great,” said Nault. “Who knows what kind of horse he could be. We’ll see’”

Dancinginthecreek, the sales topper at the 2022 Manitoba CTHS Yearling Sale, is among the five yearlings purchased by Nault's clients in the local sale, and he is also training well. The gelding by Kentucky Bear-Midnight Shadow by Trajectory is a full brother to 2022 CTHS Sales Stakes winner I Love My Life and a half-brother to multiple local champion Langara.
Trainer Mike Nault (left) exercising Dancinginthecreek, the sales topper in the 2022 CTHS Manitoba Yearling Sale. The 2-year-old gelding by Kentucky Bear-Midnight Shadow by Trajectory, was bred by Kelly Halliday and purchased by Garry Naherniak at the sale for $25,000. (George Williams photo)
Nault has been on the rise in the training ranks for the past five years, although he’s had his trainer’s license since 2000. Last year, he compiled a record of 17-9-11 from 72 starts, winning at a 24 percent clip and garnering purses of $215,241.

As always, if a trainer has talent, they will only get better as the years go by, especially if the right stock comes along. Owners like A2 Thoroughbreds, True North Thoroughbreds and Garry Naherniak, have made sure of that for Nault.

And he’s made the most of it.
Mike Nault talking to sales topper Dancinginthecreek. (George Williams photo)
Longtime ASD Horseplayer and Elite Curler Dave Boehmer wins 4th Manitoba Senior Curling Championship
Longtime ASD horseplayer and elite curler Dave Boehmer and his team are on their way to the Canadian Seniors Curling Championship after their big win in Dauphin! (Winnipeg Free Press photo)
Congratulations to veteran Assiniboia Downs horseplayer and elite curler Dave Boehmer!

Boehmer won the Provincial Senior Men’s Curling Championship in Dauphin, Manitoba on March 27, with a thrilling come from behind victory.

Down 5-1 after four ends in the final, to rivals that had won the tourney in the previous two years, Boehmer scored a deuce in the 5th end and stole points in the 6th, 7th and 8th ends to snatch victory from defeat with an exciting 6-5 win. It was the fourth Manitoba Senior Men's title for Boehmer.

Boehmer and his Manitoba team that also includes Dale Lott, Sean Bracken, and George Hacking, will now head to the 2023 Everest Canadian Seniors Championship on Dec. 4-10 at the the Vernon Curling Club, in British Columbia.

Well done Dave! We wish you and your team the best of luck at the National Championships!
Call for Foal Photos
The Jockey Club of Canada wants to showcase your foals and so do we!
The new Manitoba foals will soon be here and we want to see yours! (Manitoba CTHS photo)
The foaling season is upon us and the Jockey Club of Canada is looking for foal photos to share with their membership group. If you have a foal you'd like to show off, please email your photo to and include the province foaled, sire, dam, and photographer, as well as any additional information you wish to provide.

Any photos received will be included in the Jockey Club of Canada Newsletter through to the end of foaling season. And don’t forget to cc us on your email at

We’d love to showcase your foal photos here too.
Speculating Colt for Lambert and Mathews
Thanks to Janine Rivard for sending us this photo of Jerry Lambert and Lynn Mathews' new Speculating colt out of Spiteofsuccess by Midshipman. Born on March 22, 2023 at Rivard Stables in St. Eustache. Could be a good one! (Janine Rivard photo)
Nonios Filly for Prairie Crocus Racing Club
Thanks to Louise Townsend for sending us this photo of a new filly by Nonios-Gemagine by Gemologist, born at Maggie Lawson's Dunroven Farm on March 25, 2023. The breeding was a new venture for the Prairie Crocus Racing Club (PRRG), a group formed to purchase Gemagine from the Assiniboia Racing Club in 2020. PRRG is looking forward to the winner’s circle at ASD when trainer Devon Gittens says she’s ready to run! (James Townsend photo)
Excellent Purses, Stakes Schedule and Shipping Incentives in Place for 2023 at ASD

Assiniboia Downs offers some of the best shipping incentives in North America, and an excellent purse and stakes schedule to match. If you're looking for a great place to race this summer, you won't find a more friendly and inviting track anywhere. We've also got one of the kindest racing surfaces in North America, complemented by numerous additional amenities.

The 50-day 2023 live race meeting begins on Monday, May 22, and runs through to Tuesday, September 19. We race Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday evenings at ASD, which means you can take the weekends off and enjoy our fabulous Manitoba summer weather with family and friends! Links to the 2023 shipping incentives, racing and graded purse schedules here.
The first ASD Condition Book for 2023 is here! Time to get excited! Click here to download.
Reminder from the LGCA: Submit your licence applications

Don’t forget to submit your licence applications before the racing season starts! If you held a licence in 2022, you must apply for a renewal for the 2023 season.
A licence is required for all participants in thoroughbred horseracing:

  • Owners
  • Trainers and Assistant Trainers
  • Jockeys, Apprentice Jockeys, and Jockey Agents
  • Grooms
  • Exercise Riders

You’ll need to provide your name, prior employment history, financial history, criminal charges, and prior convictions. You must be honest in your application. Please note that bankruptcies, criminal charges, or civil proceedings do not automatically result in the denial of a licence.

A non-refundable fee is also required when submitting your application. If you are applying for more than one licence, you are only required to pay one fee, the highest fee among the licence types applied for.

Minimum processing time for applications is three business days. Incomplete applications will increase this time.

For application forms and more information:
Can't make it to the track to wager?
Watch and wager at one of our off-track betting locations:

Road to the Kentucky Derby

  • April 1 - Florida Derby (GP)
  • April 1 - Arkansas Derby (OP)
  • April 8 - Wood Memorial (Aqu)
  • April 8 - Blue Grass (Kee)
  • April 8 - Santa Anita Derby (SA)
  • April 15 - Lexington (Kee)
  • May 6 - Kentucky Derby (CD)

See Kentucky Derby prep winners here.

Kentucky Derby Future Wagers

Kentucky Oaks Future Wager
"I Won Bigg" Wagering Group

Join veteran handicappers Ivan Bigg and Larry Liebrecht as they lead discussions for the "I Won Bigg" betting group every Saturday at 10:30 a.m. in the Clubhouse.

The group will be playing Santa Anita and Tampa Bay on Saturday and Gulfstream on Sunday for the mandatory payout of the jackpot pick 6. $20 gets you a share in the ticket. Can't make it to the track? Email Larry for a share.
In The News
Champion Forte favoured. A quick look at his competition.
Forte, shown winning the Fountain of Youth Stakes on March 4, is the morning-line favourite for the Florida Derby this Saturday at Gulfstream Park. (Jamie Newell / Coglianese Photo)
The 72nd edition of the Curlin Florida Derby presented by Hill 'n' Dale Farms at Xalapa drew star 3-year-old Forte. Last year’s champion 2-year-old male is coming off a scintillating win in the Fountain of Youth Stakes and it would be no surprise if this influential Kentucky Derby prep produced the winner of the first jewel of the Triple Crown. More from America's Best Racing here.
Picks and analysis of the major contenders from John Mucciolo
Angel Of Empire (left) with Luis Saez aboard outduels Tapit Conquest to win the 51st running of the Grade II Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds. (Photo by Hodges Photography / Jamie Newell)
An excellent field of 11 three-year-olds will travel 1 1/8 miles on the Oaklawn Park dirt in Saturday’s $1.25 million Arkansas Derby (G1). The 2023 Road to the Kentucky Derby challenge series event will reward the top-five finishers with qualifying points on a 100-40-30-20-10 structure. More from TwinSpires here.
Steve Haskin's always in-depth look at the Kentucky Derby contenders
"With a lot of action over the weekend, some big performances, and new exciting faces added to the Derby picture, we are expanding the Rankings this week to 20. Saturday’s Florida Derby and Arkansas Derby should be pretty formful, so it doesn’t seem too likely we’re going to get any major surprises." ~ Steve Haskin. See all Haskin's Derby Rankings at here.
A Snapshot in Time
by Track Historian Bob Gates
This week’s Snapshot in Time takes us back to the early days of Assiniboia Downs – I’d guess in the 1960s. This photo adorned an old postcard. Who remembers those things? Does anyone still send post cards? They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I’ll say no more, except if you take a closer look you’ll notice that the old girl has undergone a few changes over the past 60 years. (Assiniboia Downs Archive).
Carryover Watch
  • Gulfstream (March 31) - Jackpot Pick 6 carryover $731,567
  • Santa Anita (March 31) - Jackpot Pick 6 carryover $288,438
  • Parx (April 3) - Jackpot Pick 5 carryover $200,076

Mandatory Payouts:
  • Friday, March 31 - Laurel Park - all carryover pools will be paid out
  • Sunday, April 2 - Gulfstream - mandatory payout of the Jackpot Pick 6

See all carryovers here.
The Best of Bob
by ASD Historian Bob Gates

What possible link could there be between the 1962 Grey Cup game and the Winnipeg born and raised horse racing Hall of Famer who was a part of Manitoba Horse Racing Commission in the '60s, '70s and '80s? Hint: What was the longest football game in the history of the CFL. Bob has the details here. (From June 2018)
Upcoming events at ASD
  • Spin to Win in the Clubwest Gaming Lounge - Monday to Friday - more info
  • Lucky Spins - Draws for $20 free VLT Spins - Friday to Sunday - more info
  • 2% cash back on all tracks on Saturday, April 1 - more info
  • 3% cash back Tuesdays in April (4, 11, 18 & 25) - more info
  • Good Friday, April 7 - Open regular hours 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
  • Saturday, April 8 - Open regular hours 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
  • Easter Sunday, April 9 - Open regular hours 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
  • Mother's Day Brunch - Sunday, May 14 - more info
  • MICEC Monster Bingo - Saturday, May 20 - more info
  • ASD Live Racing starts - Monday, May 22 - more info
We would love to hear from you! Email your comments and/or suggestions to
The Inside Track Archives
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