Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Look Back - Last year's Bob Balfe Champ

by  Renie Hippler and Jim Smith

While contemplating the upcoming running of Palm Beach Kennel Club’s annual puppy stakes an old computer programming ditty came to mind. In computer talk it has often been said that “to move forward you must back up”. That being the case we thought it would serve us well to back up and take a look at the results of the 2009 edition of the Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes and see what we can learn from it. Last year’s winner was Atascocita Edith from the breeding of Atascocita Leroy - Atascocita Flame.
Edith rolled into the final on a hot streak and continued her winning ways after the stake win by running up a seven race win streak with impressive wins over the top Grade A racers at the Kennel Club.Edith spent the better portion of last year racing at the Kennel Club and being one of the very top sprinters on the grounds. 

Towards the end of 2009 Edith traveled south to the Miami area to compete against the big boys at both the Flagler and Mardi Gras tracks. Edith acquitted herself quite well against the strong competition and even notched a win over Oya Tom Terrific, in a qualifying round of the Hollywood World Classic. Tom Terrific went on to become the eventual winner of that prestigious stakes race. Being told that this type of talent often runs in the family, we decided to investigate Edith’s family members to see what type of success her brothers and sisters may have had. Sure enough we found that Edith does in fact come from a talented group of racers. Edith has a brother Earl who reached grade A status at Palm Beach and is currently racing in the middle grades at Mardi Gras. Other littermates Eddy, Edgar, Ellen and Erika have all have had moderate success at several tracks including Palm Beach, Raynham, Mardi Gras and Naples.

Checking out last year’s also rans gives further proof that the puppy stakes is indeed a showcase of future talent. Razor Sharp who finished second last year is now sitting at number 10  on the win leader list at Palm Beach. Atascocita Mort who raced third is now competing at Mardi Gras in grade A and currently is number 5 for wins at the Hollywood oval. Kayjay Saturn after racing fourth last year went on to a very successful season at the Kennel Club last year. When you watch and wager on this year’s Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes keep in mind that not only are all the entrants possible future champions but their littermates could also be. 
Good Luck and may the best dog win.

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