02/13/2018 1:21PM

Just Howard named Maryland-bred horse of the year

Shigeki Kikkawa
Just Howard was named the 2017 Maryland-bred horse of the year after a 4-for-10 campaign that included a win in the Grade 3 Commonwealth Derby.

Just Howard was named Maryland-bred horse of the year for 2017 at the inaugural Maryland Thoroughbred Industry Renaissance Awards dinner Monday night at the Sagamore Pendry Baltimore Hotel in Fell's Point on Baltimore's Inner Harbor.

Trained by Graham Motion and owned by the Skeedattle Associates of Robert White, Lou Rehak, and Bob Orndorff, Just Howard also was named champion Maryland-bred 3-year-old and turf horse. He went 4 for 10 last year, with victories in the Grade 3 Commonwealth Derby and restricted Find and Caveat stakes over the Laurel Park turf course.

Just Howard has resumed training at Fair Hill, according to Motion.

"He's back galloping now," Motion said. "He should be ready when the turf season gets underway."

A son of English Channel, Skeedattle Associates purchased Just Howard for $37,000 at the 2015 Keeneland September sale. The earner of $267,000 is named after his breeder, Howard Bender, who Monday evening was posthumously honored with his fifth Maryland breeder of the year award.

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Crabcakes was named champion 3-year-old filly and sprinter. She was bred and owned by the Buckingham Farm of Binnie Houghton, who died in August. Houghton left all of her horses to her longtime friends Wayne and Susan Chatfield-Taylor, who own Morgan's Ford Farm in Virginia.

Crabcakes is trained by Houghton's nephew, Bernie Houghton.

Crabcakes went 4 for 9 in 2017, with wins in the restricted Miss Disco Stakes and Maryland Million Distaff at Laurel.

Whirlin Curlin and Limited View were named 2-year-old male and female champions.

Whirlin Curlin won the Christopher Elser Memorial, a South Carolina residency stakes held at Laurel, and the Maryland Juvenile Futurity back to back in November and December. The son of Curlin is trained by Gary Capuano and owned by his breeder, Peter Angelos, majority owner of the Baltimore Orioles.

Limited View won 4 of 6 starts at 2, including the Maryland Million Lassie and the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship. Purchased for $5,200 by her trainer and co-owner John Salzman Jr. at the 2016 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic fall yearling sale at Timonium, Limited view has so far earned $237,000.

Struth, winner of the Hockessin Stakes at Delaware Park and the Howard Bender Memorial at Laurel, was named top older male. Trainer Kieron Magee and owner Mark Sitlinger claimed the son of Curlin for $20,000 last May at Pimlico.

My Magician was honored as the top older female. Claimed for $25,000 at Pimlico, she went on to win three stakes – the Dashing Beauty at Delaware and the statebred Geisha and Politely at Laurel. She is owned by Euro Stable and trained by Claudio Gonzalez.

Gonzalez was named the trainer of the year in Maryland, and Jevian Toledo was honored as leading jockey.

The Sagamore Farm of Under Armour founder Kevin Plank was the state's leading owner.

Swoop was voted the top Maryland-bred Steeplechase runner. Bred by the late Thomas H. Voss, she is owned by Voss's widow, Mary, and is trained by Voss's daughter, Elizabeth.

Swoop won the $75,000 Mrs. Ogden Phipps Stakes at Saratoga in August.