by Greg Gangle, WEG Communications
Campbellville, ON — Arch Madness, the richest Canadian-sired trotter in history, will return home to Canada this weekend to contest the C$750,000 Maple Leaf Trot at Mohawk.
The trotting titan has an impressive bankroll of $3,592,585 for owners Marc Goldberg and Willow Pond LLC. The 8-year-old has had nothing short of a spectacular career, which includes 30 victories from 82 lifetime starts.
“He’s had a tremendous career for us and we are ever so thankful,” said co-owner Marc Goldberg. “Who would have thought we’d have the richest Canadian-sired trotter in the world. It’s truly an honor.”
Arch Madness is by the superstar sire Balanced Image, who changed the face of the trotting breeding industry in Canada. He was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2000 and has sired the winners of more than $104 million.
“He revolutionized the trotting breed in Canada and he still has the largest impact on the breeding game in Canada, in my opinion,” said Doug Nash, who managed Balanced Image for over 20 years at Cantario Farms and Glengate Farms. “Trotters were not prominent in Canada, in my opinion, until he came along and most sons and daughters that race today hail from the bloodlines of Balanced Image. That’s a testament to the type of sire he was.”
Although Balanced Image passed away in 2004, his legacy lives on through his offspring with Arch Madness leading the way.
“He’s from the last crop of Balanced Image which makes him extra special,” Nash said. “I’ve been watching Arch Madness since he began racing as a 2-year-old. He makes me so proud every time he steps onto the racetrack. I see a lot of his father in him and the connections have done just a tremendous job with him throughout his career. He has a great shot to win the Maple Leaf Trot this weekend.”
“My partner Barry (Goldstein of Willow Pond LLC) had a breeding to Balanced Image, so we quickly jumped on it,” Goldberg continued. “He was such a great sire and it proved to be tremendous for us. ‘Arch’ has been amazing for us since day one and we have to credit Balanced Image for that.”
Balanced Image was one of the world’s foremost trotting sires in his career. He has sired eight millionaires and a pair of double-millionaires including Goodtimes ($2,199,347) and Glorys Comet ($2,057,695).
Yankee Paco, who became the first Canadian-sired horse to win the prestigious Hambletonian in 2000, added one more credit to his father.
“Balanced Image was always claimed to be a top Canadian producer, but that quickly changed when Yankee Paco captured the Hambletonian in the U.S. and before that Billyjojimbob ($945,741) captured the Elitlopp in Sweden in 1992,” Nash said. “So he quickly became a world-renowned stallion.”
Billyjojimbob still remains as Canada’s only winner of the Elitlopp.
Looking at the historic Maple Leaf Trot, which dates back to 1950, the sons of Balanced Image made their mark on the rich classic. He has produced six ‘Trot’ winners with Natural Image (1988), Earl (1994), Glorys Comet (1995), Goodtimes (1999), Rotation (2003) and, of course, Arch Madness (2009).
Arch Madness will duel nine rivals in this year’s 61st edition for driver Brian Sears and New Jersey-based trainer Trond Smedshammer.
“It’s going to be a great race,” Nash said. “Of course, I’ll be cheering for ‘Arch,’ but what a terrific field of horses. It’s always nice to see great racing and it doesn’t get much better than that.”
“He’s going to have his work cut out for him on Saturday,” Goldberg continued. “If you’re a fan of racing, you will love the Maple Leaf Trot. My daughter and I will certainly be at Mohawk for the big race.”
This Saturday, Arch Madness will look to capture his second Maple Leaf Trot title in honor of his father.