Category Archives: ASD History

A little Magic and a lot of Bull

[caption id="attachment_7804" align="alignnone" width="780"] Balooga Bull defeats archrival Magic D 'Oro in the 2014 Gold Cup at ASD.[/caption] by Bob Gates with George Williams photos The Downs' historic 60th Season of thoroughbred racing winds up this Sunday, September 10 and what a year! I've been doing these blog stories for the past six seasons of…
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My Game, the big grey gelding from North Dakota

[caption id="attachment_7727" align="alignnone" width="780"] My Game. Ray Correa up. August 2, 1972,[/caption] by Bob Gates This week we look back at the unlikely beginnings of one of the most consistent and capable platers to ever run at Assiniboia Downs - brothers, Elery and Marlow Scherbenske's grey gelding, My Game. What attributes make a horse, great?…
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Strawberry Shortcake, a Leather Coat and the Flying Filly

[caption id="attachment_7676" align="alignnone" width="780"] Ruling Lark breaks her maiden at ASD. Bobbie Dimma up. May 22, 1968.[/caption] by Bob Gates There is nothing sweeter than the memories evoked by one of God's majestic creations - the thoroughbred racehorse.  Almost 50 years have passed since the talented bay filly, Ruling Lark ruled the roost at Assiniboia…
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Horses made jockey Jimmy Anderson whole

[caption id="attachment_7623" align="alignnone" width="780"] Jimmy Anderson wins the River Park Handicap aboard Island Fling. Sept. 4, 1978.[/caption] by Bob Gates When Sir Winston Churchill said that "there's something about the outside of a horse that's good for the inside of a man" it was like he knew Jimmy Anderson. James E. Anderson was the son…
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Johnny, Eddie and Willie – Legends of the Turf at Assiniboia Downs

[caption id="attachment_7600" align="alignnone" width="780"] Assiniboia Downs jockey colony in 1962 with Eddie Arcaro.[/caption] by Bob Gates Over the years the Downs has played host to all sorts of dignitaries, from professional athletes to royalty, but some of the most popular guests have been heroes from the Sport of Kings. There have been many, but none…
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The Manitoba Derby, The Forgotten Years – 1930 to 1940

[caption id="attachment_7550" align="alignnone" width="780"] The first winner of the Manitoba Stakes-Derby. Jack Whittier. 1930.[/caption] by Bob Gates It's been 57 years since Jack Hardy resurrected our Manitoba Derby in 1960 and this year's Derby is the 69th running of what was once touted as the "Run for the Tartan." I've never been a math genius,…
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Stuart Polet’s Fud was no Dud!

[caption id="attachment_7500" align="alignnone" width="780"] A riderless and proud Federal Ruler "wins" the Golden Sweepstakes Handicap on July 1, 1977.[/caption] by Bob Gates In 2015 the Wheat City Stakes was renamed the Manitoba Mile and Friday, July 28 marks the 40th Anniversary of Stuart Polet's "Fud the Stud's" win in the Wheat City in 1977. What?…
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Racehorses, Forever Homes & the Final Furlong

[caption id="attachment_7429" align="alignnone" width="780"] Monsoon Rain and Larry Carter.[/caption] by Bob Gates I'm back following a week's hiatus due to one of the ugliest bouts of, well, why don't we just call it a bad case of colic and leave it at that. I'm still on the mend and am writing this from what was…
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The Benjamins of Miles City, Montana, A Gem of a family

[caption id="attachment_7315" align="alignright" width="780"] Ruth Johnson and Jim Benjamin circa 1940.[/caption] by Bob Gates Montana's state motto is "Oro y Plata" (Spanish for gold and silver). The mountains of Montana have yielded fortunes in gold and silver since they were first discovered in the mid 1800s, but Big Sky Country's real riches are its people. …
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Milo, Munnie & Minne, the Out-of-Towners

by Bob Gates I've been writing this blog for going on six years and for the most part the stories have concentrated on local horsemen and their thoroughbreds. The Downs wouldn’t have survived all these years, however, if it were not for the "out-of-towners." For years horse people from other parts of Canada and south…
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