Arkansas-based horse, owner seek Horse of The Year accolade - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Arkansas-based horse, owner seek Horse of The Year accolade

Posted: Updated:

LITTLE ROCK (KATV) -- A lifetime Arkansan and his Arkansas-based horse look to take the nation by storm once more this weekend.

Arkansas-based and owned thoroughbred, Will Take Charge, hopes to add more accolades to his stable at the Eclipse Awards this weekend in Florida.

The chestnut 4-year-old will not only be vying for three-year-old male of the year for 2013, but his amazing races down the stretch have him as a finalist for the coveted Horse of The Year Eclipse Award.

"It is very exciting to me and something I'm really looking forward to. I would be tickled to death to win one of them, but sure hope to get two," said Willis Horton, the horse's owner.

Will Take Charge and Horton, from Marshall, Arkansas, took the state by storm after capturing the Smarty Jones and Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park to begin 2013. Those wins gave the colt by Unbridled's Song and Take Charge Lady, enough points to enter into a run for the roses in the 2013 Kentucky Derby.

Although he never factored into any of the Triple Crown races, Will Take Charge had bigger plans for the remainder of 2013.

Will Take Charge was second in July's Jim Dandy Stakes at Saratoga behind Belmont Stakes winner Palace Malace, but made it back into the winner's circle in August at the Travers Stakes, for the first Grade 1 win of his career.

The win surged the towering, 17-hand colt to claim victories in three of his final four races, two of them at Grade 1, horse racing's highest-level.

Will Take Charge dominated the Pennsylvania Derby down the stretch in September, lost by a nose to fellow Horse of the Year finalist Mucho Macho Man in the November Breeder's Cup, then came on strong to win the Clark Handicap 27 days later.

"It took him some time to put it all together. We took the blinkers off and he really came to life. He is a tremendous horse, and I've made the decision to run him another year based on his soundness and the big fan base he's accumulated."

Will Take Charge has surpassed more than $3 million in earnings in his 15 career starts, and is expected to make his four-year-old debut at the Donn Handicap in Florida, or the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap in March, according to trainer D. Wayne Lukas.

"I think he's going to have better four-year-old (season), than three-year-old," Lukas said.

On January 4 Horton sold a 50% share of the horse to Three Chimneys Farm, where Will Take Charge will eventually stud at the end of his racing career.

The Eclipse Awards will be announced on Jan. 18 at Gulfstream Park.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Homeless man charged with murder, local shelter reacts.

    Homeless man charged with murder, local shelter reacts.

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 9:53 PM EDT2014-04-24 01:53:52 GMT
    Little Rock (KATV)---The homeless man who is being charged with first degree murder is being held on a $1 million bond. Little Rock police say 45 year old Leslie Webb got the attention of officers at La Harpe Boulevard and State Street Tuesday night. The report stated that Webb told an officer he was staying near 1400 North Street. Webb then told officers that a man woke him up by shining a light in this face, and then started hitting Webb with it. Police say that officers saw a noticeable am...More >>
    Little Rock (KATV)---The homeless man who is being charged with first degree murder is being held on a $1 million bond. Little Rock police say 45 year old Leslie Webb got the attention of officers at La Harpe Boulevard and State Street Tuesday night. The report stated that Webb told an officer he was staying near 1400 North Street. Webb then told officers that a man woke him up by shining a light in this face, and then started hitting Webb with it. Police say that officers saw a noticeable am...More >>
  • Little Rock man arrested for breaking in sister's home and stealing thousands in items

    Little Rock man arrested for breaking in sister's home and stealing thousands in items

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:43 PM EDT2014-04-23 22:43:25 GMT
    LITTLE ROCK (KATV) --A Little Rock man remains in jail after police say he broke in and stole thousands of dollars worth of items from his own sister. Christiney Harvey told police after returning home from being in the hospital for several days she noticed the front window to her home shattered, and the door open. Little Rock police tell us they have arrested Harvey’s brother, 25-year-old Gregory Fisher, for breaking into her home on Potter Street. According to the police report bank cards,...More >>
    LITTLE ROCK (KATV) --A Little Rock man remains in jail after police say he broke in and stole thousands of dollars worth of items from his own sister. Christiney Harvey told police after returning home from being in the hospital for several days she noticed the front window to her home shattered, and the door open. Little Rock police tell us they have arrested Harvey’s brother, 25-year-old Gregory Fisher, for breaking into her home on Potter Street. According to the police report bank cards,...More >>
  • A slight risk for severe weather today

    A slight risk for severe weather today

    Thursday, April 24 2014 1:04 PM EDT2014-04-24 17:04:29 GMT
    A cold air mass will remain over Arkansas this Christmas holiday. With sunshine on this Christmas Eve we'll see highs only in the upper 30s to mid 40's over the state.More >>
    Warm conditions will dominate the upcoming weekend and beyondMore >>