Cigar on Eclipse gallop Owner, trainer, jockey also win

January 12, 1996|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

Cigar's amazing 1995 swept his owner, trainer, jockey and himself into the winner's circle again yesterday when all four were honored with Eclipse Awards. Born at Country Life Farm in Bel Air, Cigar was named on every ballot as the champion older male horse and Allen Paulson, Bill Mott and Jerry Bailey were chosen the outstanding owner, trainer and jockey, respectively.

Cigar earned a record $4,819,800 last year with a perfect 10-race record, including eight Grade I victories. He overpowered all comers at tracks in Maryland, Florida, Arkansas, Massachusetts, California and New York.

Bailey, for one, was thankful.

"There were a couple of years I thought I had a chance [as outstanding jockey]," he said from Gulfstream Park. "I'm glad to get it finally. Thanks to Cigar."

The son of Palace Music out of the mare Solar Slew began his astounding success after being shifted from an ordinary turf career to dirt racing.

After winning his last two races in 1994, he last year became the first undefeated handicap champion since Spectacular Bid in 1980.

His victory in Maryland was in the Pimlico Special and he also captured such prestigious events as the Woodward Stakes, Jockey Club Gold Cup and the Breeders' Cup Classic, where he ran a stakes record 1 minute, 59 2/5 seconds for 1 1/4 miles over a muddy track.

Now in Florida, Cigar is scheduled to make his 1996 debut Feb. 10 in the Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park.

Paulson gained his first Eclipse Award after leading the nation in purse money won, $7,232,967. His charges captured 86 races.

Mott also enjoyed good fortune with the rest of his stable, with his horses winning $11,781,136, second nationally to D. Wayne Lukas. Overall, Mott trained 22 stakes winners to 38 victories.

Bailey also set a single-season earnings record for jockeys, $16,311,876, as he gained his first Eclipse.

Lukas scored a triple with Thunder Gulch, the champion 3-year-old colt, after winning two thirds of the Triple Crown; Serena's Song, champion 3-year-old filly; and Golden Attraction, the 2-year-old filly winner.

Thunder Gulch won the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes, but finished third to stablemate Timber Country in the Preakness. He has been retired to stud after suffering an injury in the Jockey Club Gold Cup.

Maria's Mon, injured while training for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, was named the winner in the 2-year-old colt or gelding division. The injury will prevent him from competing in the Kentucky Derby.

Cigar seems a shoo-in for the Horse of the Year award, which will be announced at the 25th annual Eclipse Awards dinner in San Diego on Feb. 9.

Eclipse winners

2-year-old colt or gelding: Maria's Mon*

2-year-old filly: Golden Attraction*

3-year-old colt or gelding: Thunder Gulch*

3-year-old filly: Serena's Song*

Older colt, horse or gelding: Cigar*

Older filly or mare: Inside Information*

Male turf horse, 3 year old and up: Northern Spur*

Female turf horse, 3 year old and up: Possibly Perfect*

Sprinter, 3 year old and up: Not Surprising*

Steeplechase horse: Lonesome Glory*

*: Unanimous choices

Human division

Outstanding owner: Allen Paulson

Outstanding trainer: Bill Mott

Outstanding jockey: Jerry Bailey

Outstanding apprentice jockey: Ramon Perez

Outstanding breeder: Juddmonte Farms

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