A Review Of The 2011 Eclipse Awards

Harve De GraceI wish to start off this blog by apologizing for not getting this review of the Eclipse Awards which took place on Monday, January 16, 2012 sooner. Sometimes life just happens, and I have a few blogs I wanted to get done, and didn’t get to write, so I apologize to my readers.

Now, that I got that out of the way, as I mentioned, on Monday, January 16,2012, Thoroughbred Racing’s best and brightest were gathered to honor those horses and humans who were the best of the best in the year of 2011. Categories went from Outstanding Two Year Old Male and Female to Outstanding Jockey all the way to the top prize: Horse of the Year. Ballots were sent to three voting blocks, and after all votes were tallied (first place votes, second place, and third), the awards were determined, and given out on this great evening.

Overall, the ceremony was very good, and well run. ESPN commentator/reporter Jeanine Edwards did a great job hosting. She kept things running a long. She even made some Tebow jokes, and did the Tebow pose. Many of the winners had great speeches, and a few went on and on and on, especially a couple where they had a whole bunch of people, and a lot of them when on forever and a day. However, I didn’t get a sense of the show dragging. People attending were wearing gorgeous tuxes and gowns. Overall, a great ceremony.

Some brief comments on the winners of the Eclipse Awards. I was bothered that the majority of the winners were winners of the Breeders Cup. I thought the candidate’s body of work for 2011 was supposed to be the criteria, not just one race. For Best Two Year Old Male, Hansen won because he nipped out the previously undefeated Union Rags by a nose in the Breeder’s Cup. Rags won the Champagne Stakes and other races.

Just because Rags lost in the Breeders Cup, he shouldn’t be Best 2YO Male? My Miss Aurelia clearly deserved it because she was undefeated all year, and won the Breeder’s Cup. I just think overall, the Breeder’s Cup has way too much weight, and it showed here. Another problem I have is that the Breeder’s Cup races can be used as a weapon or sometimes even if you do win it, it is not enough.

I was annoyed that Animal Kingdom won the Best 3YO Male Eclipse, over Caleb’s Posse. Animal Kingdom won the Derby, and finished second in the Preakness, and got hurt in the Belmont, and Caleb’s Posse won one of the Breeder’s Cup races and won others, but Kingdom got the award.

I did get a hold of the votes and such, and I could not help but notice that one voter voted Uncle Mo for Best 3YO. What? Uncle Mo won a couple of Derby preps, and got sick after another one. He missed the Triple Crown altogether, and came back in the Summer and won a major Sprint race. He ran in the Breeder’s Cup Classic and finished up the track. I don’t know what the voter was thinking here.

All the other winners pretty much deserved their wins, and I didn’t have a problem with any of them. Ramon Dominguez did a great job this year, and was the definitive winner of Outstanding Jockey. Cape Blanco deserved the Turf Horse award. Royal Delta certainly deserved hers. She was awesome this year. I had no problem with Bill Mott as Outstanding trainer, and Ken and Sarah Ramsey as Outstanding Owners. The Ramsey have been awesome for racing. There are other categories, but I am making this brief. Here are the list of winners:

The horse that I definitely was very proud of, and very excited about was the great mare, Havre De Grace. She won not only Outstanding Older Female, but Horse of the Year. It was such an awesome year for her. She won the Whitney (named by NTRA, as the most exciting race in 2011), against Males, and the Beldame by daylight. Her overall year was fantastic. Horse of the Year was pretty open as Grace did finish fourth in the Breeder’s Cup Classic, but overall, she was the best horse, and definitely deserved it.

Well, that is my rundown. I hope you enjoyed it. Congrats to all the winners.

Terri Bey currently blogs for about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for Terri can be found here at Facebook- and at Twitter-

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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