04/30/2004 12:00AM

Breeders honor Funny Cide


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Funny Cide became the darling of New York's breeding and racing program with his wins in the 2003 Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

Last Monday, the New York Thoroughbred Breeders paid tribute to Funny Cide by honoring him as horse of the year and champion 3-year-old male for his achievements in 2003. Those awards, as well as 13 others, were revealed at a dinner co-hosted by the NYTB and New York's Breeding and Racing Program. The equine winners were selected by a panel of New York turf writers.

Funny Cide's connections - trainer Barclay Tagg, jockey Jose Santos, and breeder WinStar Farm - also were feted at the banquet, held at the Desmond Hotel and Conference Center in Albany, N.Y.

Among those attending the dinner were Funny Cide's 10-member team of owners, Sackatoga Stable, and Joe and Anne McMahon, whose farm, McMahon of Saratoga Thoroughbreds in Saratoga Springs, was where Funny Cide was born.

Jerry Nielsen, the popular and respected president of the NYTB until his death earlier this year, was honored by the NYTB with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Nielsen's wife, Joanne, and their four children accepted the award.

Here's a look at the other New York-bred winners for 2003.

Read the Footnotes (2-year-old male): Read the Footnotes, who was scheduled to run in Saturday's Kentucky Derby, won two graded stakes in New York last year, the Nashua and Remsen. Bred by Lawrence Goichman and owned by Seth Klarman, Read the Footnotes, a son of Smoke Glacken, is trained by Richard Violette Jr.

Capeside Lady (2-year-old filly): Set a stakes record when she won the Joseph A. Gimma by nine lengths at Belmont Park in the mud. Owned by So Madcapt Stable, Capeside Lady also won the Maid of the Mist. Capeside Lady, a daughter of Cape Town, was bred by Becky Thomas and Lewis Lakin. She is trained by Todd Pletcher.

Buy the Sport (3-year-old filly): Buy the Sport raced in Europe before making her American debut in the Grade 1 Gazelle in September. Buy the Sport won the Gazelle and later finished third in the Grade 1 Beldame. Owned by Georgica Stable, Buy the Sport, a daughter of Devil's Bag, was co-bred by Patricia Calandro. Buy the Sport's dam, Final Accord, was recognized as the 2003 New York broodmare of the year.

Well Fancied (older male): He was unstoppable at Belmont Park, winning four consecutive races, including three stakes. Well Fancied's win in the 1 1/8-mile Empire Classic over Gander, the 2001 New York-bred horse of the year, proved he was more than a sprinter. A 6-year-old son of Prosper Fager, Well Fancied was bred by the late Seymour Cohn, who initially raced Well Fancied. Trained by Richard Dutrow Jr., Well Fancied is owned by Sanford Goldfarb, Stewart Hoffman, and Jonathan Flesig.

Bossanova (sprinter): The 3-year-old's most important win in 2003 came when he beat older horses in the Grade 3 Fall Highweight at Aqueduct. He also won the Mike Lee Stakes by 13 1/4 lengths at Belmont Park. Owned by Rod and Lorraine Rodriguez, Bossanova was trained by Jim Bond for the second half of his 2003 campaign. Bred by Katy and Kent Wiechert, Bossanova was sired by Pine Bluff. He was euthanized earlier this year because of injuries sustained while running in the Hollie Hughes.

Carson Hollow (older female): Her 2003 campaign was abbreviated, but Carson Hollow - the 2002 New York-bred horse of the year and champion 3-year-old filly and sprinter - still did well with her limited opportunities. Last year, she won the Grade 2 Distaff Breeders' Cup Handicap at Aqueduct and placed in two other graded stakes. Carson Hollow died in August following colic surgery. Trained by Richard Dutrow Jr., Carson Hollow was owned by Frank Stronach in partnership with Hemlock Hills Farm. A daughter of Carson City, Carson Hollow was bred by Patricia Purdy.

Whitmore's Conn (turf male): Won Saratoga's Grade 1 Sword Dancer and, for the second straight year, the Grade 2 Bowling Green. Bred by Bud Wolf and Joe D'Agostino, Whitmore's Conn, a son of Kris S., was owned by Michael Shanley and his wife, Lyn. Randy Schulhofer trained Whitmore's Conn, who entered stud in Ireland this year.

Wake Up Kiss (turf female): Wake Up Kiss's biggest win came in a division of the Yaddo Handicap for owner Rudlein Stable and William Clifton and trainer Jim Bond. Wake Up Kiss, a daughter of Cure the Blues, was bred by John Hettinger of Akindale Farm.

Greek Hero (steeplechaser): Won this title for the third time for owner Sharon Sheppard and trainer Alicia Murphy.