Article published on 14 July 2010

Woodbine Racecourse the Scene of a Scandal

Wake at Noon death at Woodbine sparks scandal
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Just over two weeks ago, Woodbine Racecourse in Toronto, Canada was the scene of a scandal that has rocked the local racing industry, as it involved the death of a once top-rated thoroughbred and the banning of his connections.

The saga began on Tuesday, June 29 when during a routine training session, a thoroughbred suddenly broke down on the track and had to be euthanized. But that piece of unpleasantness was just the start, as the whole story began to unfold.

It soon transpired that the horse in question was none other than Wake at Noon, a once great 13-year-old runner that was named 2002 Canadian Horse of the Year, who was owned and bred by Bruno Schickedanz and trained by Tom Marino.

In his day, Wake at Noon was a very well known and respected race horse, and one who in 2002 alone earned a whopping $1.6 million. During his long and illustrious career he won 21 from 67 starts, and had not raced since November 2007.

And here's where the death of Wake at Noon took on a sinister note. According to Woodbine's rules, horses over the age of 10 are not allowed to train on the track if they haven't raced in over a year, or even allowed onto the premises.

So the question is why Schickedanz, with the knowledge of Marino, brought Wake at Noon, a horse clearly too old to race, to a course with strict rules on older horses? Hard to say, but there were consequences for the connections' actions.

As a result of the incident, Woodbine Entertainment executive vice president of racing, Jamie Martin, has ensured that both Schickedanz and Marino have been banned indefinitely from entering or stabling horses at Woodbine Racecourse.
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