The torch of the oldest Eclipse Award winner passed to Flatterer, after 34-year-old Lord Avie died in his paddock at Blue Ridge Farm in Upperville, Va., in December. In January, Flatterer turned 34.
Lord Avie, a son of Maryland stallion Lord Gaylord, was the champion 2-year-old of 1980 when on the board in all 10 starts, five Grade 1s, including victories in the Champagne and Young America stakes. Also a Grade 1 winner at 3, he had an equally successful stud career, siring 78 stakes winners, including two international champions, while standing at Spendthrift and Lane’s End in Kentucky. He moved to Blue Ridge in 2002 after being pensioned.
Four-time steeplechase champion and Hall of Famer Flatterer made his debut on the flat at Aqueduct in 1982 at age 3, won his first jump start the following year, and raced through age 7. The Pennsylvania-bred resided at owner/breeder Bill Pape’s My Way Farm in Unionville, Pa.
Flatterer lived on for more than a year, dying in April 2014 at 35.
Jim Casey had won bigger races in his long and distinguished career as a trainer, owner and breeder, but winning the Eleanor Casey Memorial Stakes at Charles Town – named after his late wife and partner in the racing business – was special. Having never started a runner in the race, he won it with Queen’o’daball, one of four 2-year-old fillies in the eight-horse field representing a Casey family member. Casey fillies took the top three spots.
Jim Casey passed away Jan. 8 at the age of 92.
Seven-pound apprentice Trevor McCarthy won four races for four trainers at Laurel Park on Jan. 1 to kick off 2013. The 18-year-old son of retired jockey Michael McCarthy (a winner of 2,907 races in a long career in the region), Trevor had his sights on adding his name to the list of Eclipse Award-winning riders who cultivated their careers in Maryland.
McCarthy was an Eclipse Award finalist for apprentice rider, losing to Drayden Van Dyke. Over the past decade McCarthy has ranked in the top-10 three times by wins for a year, and has more than 1,770 total. Now based in New York, he recorded his first Grade 1 win aboard Highland Chief (Ire) in 2022 before being sidelined by injury late in the year.
E Dubai, who stood at Northview PA in Peach Bottom, was the sire of Fort Larned, the richest runner in North America in 2012 (with $3,598,455), and Winning Dubai, who tied as North America’s winningest runner, with 10 victories from 20 starts (all in Puerto Rico).