Toronto, ON --- After earning himself his first O’Brien Award as Canada’s top trainer in 2011, Jeff Gillis has much to look forward to in the coming months.
Thanks to top horses such as Frenchfrysnvinegar, Speed Again and Mister Herbie, just to name a few, the Hillsburgh conditioner celebrated a career year in 2011 with C$3,875,942 in purse earnings.
Gillis, who was also the leading conditioner on the WEG circuit last year, had a stable that produced 99 wins in 608 starts with C$3,248,083 in earnings between Woodbine and Mohawk.
Speed Again, a 3-year-old son of Dragon Again, is now one of the sport’s glamor boys and will be in the spotlight as he is eligible to the Pepsi North America Cup.
As a rookie, Speed Again banked $502,428 and had a record of 6-3-1 in 12 outings, which included a triumph in the Champlain Stakes, a second-place finish in the Governor's Cup, and a third-place effort in the Metro Pace.
“We are looking for big things from him,” Gillis said. “He started back in late-January and just started training. He’s grown up a little bit and matured, too.”
Gillis also noted that Speed Again’s first stakes engagement would likely be theSomebeachsomewhere at the Campbellville oval.
After scoring a victory in the OSS Super Final late last fall, Mister Herbie returned to victory lane last week (March 5) in his 2012 pari-mutuel debut. Against Open company, the 4-year-old gelding romped by 4-1/4 lengths, stopping the timer in 1:53.3.
The son of Here Comes Herbie is being pointed towards the Glorys Comet Trotting Series, which begins on March 24 at the Toronto oval.
In an interview with WEG’s communications department, Gillis offers his thoughts on his top stable stars. To view the interview, please click here.