05/03/2009 11:00PM

Wando, Peteski top Canadian Hall nominees


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Wando and Peteski, the most recent winners of the Canadian Triple Crown, are among this year's nominees to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame.

Three nominees in four categories - male horse, female horse, person, and veteran - were announced by the Hall of Fame's nominations committee on Monday. The 20 members of the election committee will each select one nominee in each category, and any candidates with eight or more votes will be inducted.

The inductees will be announced on May 19 and honored on Aug. 27.

Wando won the Queen's Plate, Prince of Wales, and Breeders' Stakes in 2003 and retired with earnings of $2,566,060, while Peteski swept the races in 1993 and banked a total of $1,287,866. Both earned Sovereign Awards as Canada's Horse of the Year.

They are joined on the male horse list by Victory Gallop, who never raced in his native Canada but won the 1998 Belmont and other major events in the U.S. and won the Eclipse Award as top older male in 1999.

Maryfield, the Eclipse Award-winning female sprinter in 2007 after winning Belmont's Grade 1 Ballerina and the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Monmouth Park, is on the female horse short list.

Her rivals are Alywow, who was Canada's Horse of the Year, champion 3-year-old filly, and champion turf horse in 1994, and Apelia, a filly who won the sprint Sovereign in 1993.

Gustav Schickedanz, who bred and owned Wando plus other top horses, including multiple Grade 1 winner Langfuhr and Kathie's Colleen, is nominated in the "person" category along with the late Tammy Samuel-Balaz and jockey Mickey Walls.

Samuel-Balaz, who died in January 2008 at age 47, played a key role in the powerful Sam-Son Farm racing and breeding operation established by her father, Ernie.

Walls won back-to-back Sovereign Awards as champion apprentice in 1990 and 1991, adding the Sovereign as top jockey in the latter season.

Voters will be faced with a difficult choice in the veteran category, restricted to racehorses whose careers ended at least 20 years ago.

Play the King was Canada's Horse of the Year, champion sprinter, and champion older horse in 1988 following a campaign in which he finished a close second in the Breeders' Cup Sprint. He also was the Sovereign Award-winning sprinter and older horse in 1987.

La Voyageuse, racing from 1977 through 1981, won 26 of 56 starts, including 12 stakes. She was Canada's champion 3-year-old filly in 1978, champion older mare in 1979, and champion sprinter in 1980.

Rainbow Connection earned Sovereign Awards as a 2-year-old filly in 1980, a 3-year-old filly in 1981, and a broodmare in 1994.