10/19/2006 12:00AM

Four Finger Lakes finalists


Johnie Bye Night, a three-time stakes winner this season, heads the list of four finalists for 2006 horse of the year at Finger Lakes.

A 4-year-old gelding owned and trained by Charlton Baker, Johnie Bye Night won two sprint stakes for New York-breds and the Wadsworth Memorial against open company going 1 1/8 miles. He dominated all three races, winning by a combined 13 3/4 lengths with a pair of 100 Beyer Speed Figures and a 98.

The other three finalists are 4-year-old gelding Mad Bob Cat, a five-time winner in the allowance ranks; the 6-year-old mare Ruby's Rocket, who won two stakes for fillies and mares along with an overnight handicap; and Donkey Engine, a 3-year-old whose four wins include the Ontario County.

Mad Bob Cat, trained by John Tebbutt, has made 8 starts locally this season with 5 wins and 3 seconds.

Ruby's Rocket, trained and partially owned by Tim Murphy, defeated open stakes company going six furlongs and statebreds in a 1 1/16-mile stakes. In addition to her 3 wins in 9 starts, she was second twice, once in a stakes and once in an overnight handicap.

Donkey Engine, trained by Linda Rice, began the meet as a maiden. He reeled off four consecutive wins locally before finishing second by a neck in his last start on July 17.

The winner, along with the top horses in each divisional category, will be announced at the local Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association awards dinner on Nov. 11.