Wheeler, Ghostzapper Elected To Hall Of Fame

Racing News
Posted 04.23.12 at 12:22

The late Bob Wheeler is among the four 2012 inductees into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame. © Benoit Photo

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (April 23, 2012)—The late Bob Wheeler, who won 273 races at Betfair Hollywood Park, and Ghostzapper, who earned the first win of his brilliant career here, are among the four 2012 inductees into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame.

Results of the voting by members of the Hall of Fame panel were revealed Monday. Besides Wheeler and Ghostzapper, the other inductees are jockey John Velazquez and trainer Roger Attfield.

Wheeler, who trained for more than half a century (1938-1992), won 1,336 races. Of those, 51 were stakes victories at Betfair Hollywood Park, including five in the Hollywood Juvenile Championship, four in the Cinderella Stakes and two in the Hollywood Gold Cup – Dotted Swiss (1960) and Cadiz (1963) – Hollywood Oaks, Hollywood Lassie (which is now known as the Landaluce), Milady, Railbird and Vanity Handicap.

One of the Vanity victories was provided by Silver Spoon in 1960. A member of the Hall of Fame, Silver Spoon won 10 stakes as a 3 and 4-year-old, including a victory over males in the 1959 Santa Anita Derby.

Owned by Frank Stronach and trained by Bobby Frankel, Ghostzapper, who earned his maiden victory by nine lengths Nov. 16, 2002 at Betfair Hollywood Park, finished with nine wins in 11 starts and earnings of $3,446,120.

The son of Awesome Again and the Relaunch mare Baby Zip was Horse of the Year and Champion Older Male of 2004, a 4-for-4 campaign he concluded with a record-setting victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Ghostzapper covered the 1 ¼ miles at Lone Star Park in 1:59.02.

The Eclipse Award winner as outstanding jockey in 2004 and 2005, Velazquez currently has over 4,800 victories with earnings of more than $263 million. He picked up his first Kentucky Derby win a year ago with longshot Animal Kingdom and won the 2007 Belmont Stakes with the filly Rags to Riches.

Voted Canada’s outstanding trainer a record eight times and the conditioner of three Canadian Triple Crown winners (Izvestia, With Approval and Peteski), Attfield has 1,731 wins and purse earnings of more than $88 million.

Wheeler, Ghostzapper, Velazquez and Attfield will be inducted into the Hall of Fame during a ceremony at the Fasig Tipton sales pavilion Aug. 10 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

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