08/16/2011 3:02PM

WinStar holding contest

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WinStar Farm will hold an online contest in which fans can vote for their favorite among 32 foals sired by first-year sire Colonel John.

The contest - also a campaign to promote the Grade 1-winning sire’s initial crop of foals - will allow fans to vote for their favorite by clicking a “like” button for the foal of their choice. The foals’ photos are online at www.winstarfarm.com/coloneljohnrecruits.html. Pedigrees and breeders’ identities are not included, and the fans are to vote based on the foals’ looks alone.

WinStar solicited photos from the owners of Colonel John’s first foals, then asked a panel including Keeneland executive Tom Thornbury, Fasig-Tipton executive Dan Pride, and television commentator Donna Brothers to select 32 contestants based on looks. The number 32 signifies the number of U.S. Army service members in Col. John Geider’s platoon; the stallion Colonel John is named for Geider.

The fans’ first round of voting ends Sept. 15 at noon, and the 16 foals with the most votes will progress. An “Elite Eight” round will begin Oct. 1, and a “Final Four” vote begins Oct. 15. On Nov. 1 at noon, the foal with the most votes will be named “Top Recruit.”

WinStar will hold a prize drawing for participating voters, and foals’ owners will receive prizes based on how far each foal gets in the contest. The owner of the “Top Recruit” will receive a free season to Colonel John in 2012.