11/16/2005 1:00AM

Top Shoter chosen as horse of the year


Top Shoter, a 6-year-old gelding whose two stakes victories this season included a sprint in which he carried 130 pounds, has been chosen as the horse of the year at Finger Lakes.

The award was announced Tuesday night during the Finger Lakes Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association dinner.

, trained and owned by Charlton Baker, won the $50,000 George Barker Stakes by 7 1/2 lengths on May 30 and captured the $50,000 Wine Country Handicap by six lengths under high weight of 130 pounds on July 16. He also took an overnight handicap in early June.

In eight lifetime starts at Finger Lakes, Top Shoter has seven victories. His only loss came when he attempted to stretch out to 1 1/16 miles six days after running in a turf sprint at Saratoga.

A New York-bred son of Ormsby, Top Shoter was also chosen as the track's leading older male.

The 5-year-old mare Ruby's Rocket, who collected two wins and a second in four local stakes starts, was voted the best older filly or mare.

Trained by Tim Murphy, who owns the mare in partnership with Dave Brown, Ruby's Rocket took the $50,000 Susan B. Anthony Handicap on May 30 and the $50,000 Jack Betta Be Rite Stakes on Sept. 10.

In a closely contested race, You Willgo Broke, a six-time winner at Finger Lakes between June 14 and Sept. 30, won out over Seattle Schifty for the award as top 3-year-old. All six wins by You Willgo Broke, owned and trained by Ralph D'Alessandro, came in allowance sprints.

Line Memory, a four-time winner in the allowance ranks and a close second in the New York Oaks, was honored as top 3-year-old filly. She is owned by Yvonne Turchiarelli and trained by Jared Schoeneman.

Among claiming horses, Nick the Vest (male) and Sweet Time (female) won in the $8,000-and-up category. Atlantis Crusader and J's Sea Angel tied for top male, and Demus was the leading female between $4,000 and $6,250.