Texas Chrome, who last year joined Groovy as just the second Texas-bred millionaire in history, will be named the Texas Horse of the Year for the second consecutive time at the Texas Thoroughbred Association’s annual meeting and awards banquet on June 23 at Lone Star Park. The 2017 Texas champions were determined by points earned in stakes performances during the year.
Texas Chrome competed in five graded stakes during 2017 with a trio of second-place finishes in the Steve Sexton Mile Stakes (G3) and Lone Star Park Handicap (G3) in his home state and also in the Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Handicap (G3) in Iowa. Texas Chrome also won the Assault Stakes at Lone Star Park and in the process went over the $1-million mark in earnings for Danny Keene’s Keene Thoroughbreds LLC. The now 5-year-old stallion has since been retired to stud with a career record of 22-9-4-3 and earnings of $1,033,262. He will also be awarded the title of Texas Champion Older Horse.
Texas Chrome, a $10,000 purchase by Keene at the 2014 Texas Summer Yearling Sale, was bred by Craig Upham and sired by Grasshopper, who previously stood at Lane’s End Texas and now stands at Valor Farm near Pilot Point, Texas. Upham and his wife, Sue Dowling, consigned Texas Chrome to the sale as Stoneview Farm.
Texas Chrome’s half sister, Patrona Margarita, will be honored as Texas Champion 2-Year-Old Filly after the daughter of Special Rate won the Grade 2 Pocahontas Stakes at Churchill Downs and ran third in the Texas Thoroughbred Futurity at Lone Star Park. Bred and owned by Upham, Patrona Margarita is out of the Texas-bred Naevus mare Margarita Mistress, who will be named Texas Champion Broodmare for the second year in a row.
Longtime Texas breeders and owners Wayne Sanders and Larry Hirsch also scored dual honors as their homebreds Kat’s Infatuation and Zippit E earned the titles of Texas Champion 3-Year-Old Filly and Texas Champion Older Filly/Mare, respectively.
Following is the complete list of the 2017 champion horses:
2-Year-Old Filly: Patrona Margarita (by Special Rate) • Owner/Breeder: Craig D. Upham
2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding: Redatory (by Oratory) • Owner/Breeder: James Wessel
3-Year-Old Filly: Kat’s Infatuation (by Silver City) • Owner/Breeder: Wayne Sanders and Larry Hirsch
3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding: Durocher (by Niagara Causeway) • Owner: Sterling Racing LLC, John Herzberg and Michelle Allan • Breeder: La Bahia Stud Inc.
Older Filly/Mare: Zippit E (by My Golden Song) • Owner/Breeder: Wayne Sanders and Larry Hirsch
Horse of the Year and Older Horse: Texas Chrome (by Grasshopper) • Owner: Keene Thoroughbreds LLC • Breeder: Craig Upham
Champion Broodmare: Margarita Mistress
The award for the Texas Champion Claimer will be determined by an online vote on the TTA website.