Crabcakes was named Champion 3-Year-Old Filly and Champion Sprinter © Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

Earlier this month, the Maryland Horse Breeders Association announced its 2017 Maryland-bred champions during its inaugural Renaissance Awards. This new awards celebration was a cooperative effort between the Maryland Horse Breeders Association, Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association and Maryland Jockey Club. The event was held on February 12 at the Sagamore Pendry Hotel in Baltimore. Below are a list of the 2017 champions that were honored at the Renaissance Awards.

Just Howard – Horse of the Year, Champion 3-Year-Old Male, Champion Turf Horse
Just Howard, owned by Skeedattle Associates’ (based out of Clarksville), won the Commonwealth Derby (G3) at Laurel Park during his summer four-race win streak. A son of English Channel and out of the Alphabet Soup mare Aruban Sandwich, Just Howard is trained by Graham Motion and was bred by the late Howard Bender. He broke his maiden in his sixth career start, a maiden special weight on the turf at Pimlico in May of 2017. That July, he won the Caveat at Laurel Park and then a month later, won the Find Stakes. His final win of the season was the Commonwealth Derby where he set a course record by running the mile and eighth race on the turf in 1:45:81.

Howard Bender – Breeder of the Year
The late Howard Bender was named 2017 Maryland Breeder of the Year with several winners running in 2017. Among his 2017 winners was Just Howard, who as mentioned above, was named the 2017 Maryland-bred Hose of the Year, Champion 3-Year-Old Male and Champion Turf Horse. Just Howard was foaled at Glade Valley Farms in Frederick. Just Howard was purchased by Skeedattle Associates as a yearling at the Keeneland during the dispersal sale of Bender-bred yearlings. The group named the yearling after his breeders.

Great Notion – Stallion of the Year
Northview Stallion Station’s Great Notion earned his second consecutive stallion title. The 2000 bay stallion is by Elusive Quality and out of Evening Primrose by Dayjur. His progeny earning for 2017 exceeded $2 million for the second year in a row. His average earnings per runner was $32,642, which was the highest in the state among stallions with six or more starters.

Parlez – Mare of the Year
Parlez, owned by Robert T. Manfuso and Katharine M. Voss of Chanceland Farm, was named Mare of the Year. She was the dam of six winners, four of these are stakes hoses including millionaire International Star. She also is the dam of stakes performer D C Dancer. Her daughter Fools In Love, by Not For Love, sold for $1 million to top the third say session of the Keeneland November sale.

Whirlin Curlin – Champion 2-Year-Old Male
Bred and owned by Marathon Farms Inc., Whirlin Curlin is trained by Gary Capuano. He is by Curlin and out of Lexington Girl, by Storm Cat. This past year, he won the Juvenile Futurity and Christopher Elser Memorial.

Limited View – Champion 2-Year-Old Filly
Limited View, by Freedom Child and out of Loves to Glance by Not For Love, had a stellar 2017 season winning four out of six starts. Owned by John E. Salzman Jr., Fred Wasserloos and George Greenwalt, Limited View was bred by Barbara G. Smith and is trained by John E. Salzman, Jr.

Crabcakes – Champion 3-Year-Old Filly, Champion Sprinter
With four wins in 2017, including the Maryland Million Distaff Handicap, Crabcakes was named Champion 3-Year-Old Filly and Champion Sprinter. The 2014 filly is trained by T. Bernard Houghton and bred by Buckingham Farm. Owned by Morgan’s Ford Farm, the Great Notion filly is out of the Charismatic mare Aunt Elaine.

Struth – Champion Older Male
In 2017, the 2012 Curlin gelding Struth won five times bringing his career earnings up to $361,075. Out of Star Number, by Polish Numbers, Struth was bred by Fitzhugh LLC, is owned by Mark Sitlinger and trained by Kieron Magee.

My Magician – Champion Older Female
My Magician, owned by Euro Stable and trained by Claudio A. Gonzalez, finished out the 2017 season by winning the Politely Stakes at Laurel Park. The 2012 Street Magician daughter is out of My Rib by Partner’s Hero. She was bred by Mrs. Thomas Bowman, Brooke C. Bowman and R. Larry Johnson.

Swoop – Champion Steeplechaser
The 2010 Louis Quartoze bay mare Swoop, out of Admonish by Caveat, won the Mrs. Ogden Phipps Stakes at Saratoga last fall. Bred and owned by Mrs. Thomas H. Voss, she is trained by Elizabeth Voss.