The 2017 Eclipse Award finalists have been announced and there are some very familiar names floating at the top of each category. In total there are 17 total awards handed out. The ceremony will be presented by Daily Racing Form, Breeders’ Cup and The Stronarch Group.
The most obvious choice for the 2017 Horse of the Year is Gun Runner, who stole the season after returning from Dubai by going undefeated through the summer before running free and clear to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Gun Runner is next anticipated to compete in the 2018 Pegasus World Cup in what will be his last competition before retiring to an already busy stud season. The broodmares are literally lining up to cash in on this future stallion’s success.
Arrogate is one of three other 2017 Eclipse Award Finalists for Horse of the Year for obvious reason. Joining in is World Approval, who won the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Mile, Woodbine Mile, Fourstardave and Dixie through the season while also dropping to 5th in the Manhattan Handicap.
As they say, a rising tide raises all ships so the connections for both Arrogate and Gun Runner are enjoying nominations as 2017 Eclipse Award finalists as well. Besliu Stables, Clearsky Farms and WinStar Farms are in the running for Breeder of the Year.
Chad Brown, Bob baffert and Steve Asmussen are all in the running as the top conditioners for Outstanding Trainer.
Leading the charge for Champion Male Sprinter are Roy H, Imperial Hint and Mind Your Biscuits.
Lady Eli heads the class for Champion Turf Female alongside Wuheida and Off Limits.
Javie Castelleno, Mike Smith and Jose Ortiz are all in the running for Outstanding Jockey. Omitted from this list of 2017 Eclipse Award finalists for riders is Florent Geroux, who rode Gun Runner all season.
Finally, the steeplechase nominees include All The Way Jose, Mr. Hot Stuff and Scorpiancer.
The 2017 Eclipse Award finalists will know who wins their respective category on January 25th at the 47 annual awards ceremony hosted by Gulfstream Park.