In addition to the regular and media awards, two other Eclipse Awards will be given out on January 16.
Rapid Redux, a winner of 19 consecutive Thoroughbred races in 2011, will be honored with the Special Eclipse Award. The Special Award honors extraordinary service, individual achievements in, or contributions to the sport of Thoroughbred racing. Robert L. Cole, Jr., of Baltimore, owner of Rapid Redux, will accept the Special Award.
A chestnut gelding trained by David Wells, Rapid Redux, was a perfect 19-for-19 as a 5-year-old in 2011, competing in starter allowance races in the Mid-Atlantic region. This mark equaled Citation's U.S. record of 19 wins in a calendar year. Counting the gelding's two wins to close out 2010, Rapid Redux also broke the record for consecutive wins by a U.S -based runner previously held by both Zenyatta and Peppers Pride, who registered 19 straight victories.
Cole claimed Rapid Redux for $6,250 in October of 2010. During his streak which began on December 2, 2010, Rapid Redux, a son of Pleasantly Perfect, raced at seven different tracks and won at distances from five furlongs to 1 1/8 miles.
"It's a top award in this sport and a dream come true," said Cole, who grew up in Towson, Md. "Rapid Redux has shown the greatest in durability and consistency. He hasn't thrown in a bad race. To win like this over a 13-month period is nearly impossible. He's Maryland home-grown running in Maryland. We wanted him to stay close to home as he relates so well to the average fan. It's not like going to the sales and paying a million dollars. He's a blue-collar horse."
Rapid Redux made his 2012 debut at Laurel Park on January 4 at Laurel Park, winning a $17,000 allowance race for his 22nd consecutive win.
"The achievements of Rapid Redux in 2011 were remarkable," said Alex Waldrop, President and CEO of the NTRA. "Winning 21 consecutive races including 19 of them in a single year--at distances ranging from five furlongs to a mile and an eighth-is something we won't soon again see. We congratulate Robert Cole, trainer David Wells and the jockeys who rode Rapid Redux for all they did to help Rapid Redux earn this Special Award."
W. Cothran "Cot" Campbell, who revolutionized racehorse ownership and syndication through his Dogwood Stable, will be honored with the Eclipse Award of Merit for a lifetime of outstanding achievement in Thoroughbred racing.
Campbell, 84, of Aiken, S.C., will receive the Eclipse Award of Merit on Monday, January 16 at the 41st Annual Eclipse Awards, presented by Daily Racing Form and the Breeders' Cup. The Eclipse Awards will be held at the Beverly Wilshire, a Four Seasons Hotel, in Beverly Hills, Calif.
First purchasing horses in 1969, Campbell founded Dogwood Stable in 1973 and introduced the concept of syndicated racehorse ownership, bringing hundreds of new owners into the sport to experience the joy of Thoroughbred racing. Over time, Dogwood set the standard followed by other racing stables which adopted the partnership plan. The concept of group ownership of Thoroughbreds appealed to Campbell because it allowed people the opportunity to participate in the racing world at a reasonable cost. Campbell estimates that Dogwood has brought in approximately 1,200 partners during the past 35 years.
In November of last year, Campbell announced that he was moving into "semi-retirement," continuing existing partner relationships, but not forming new partnerships in 2012.
"This Award of Merit is a blockbuster for me," said Campbell. "I am surprised, delighted, and very appreciative that it comes my way. It is the highlight of a career that has been exhilarating, to put it mildly."
Since Mrs. Cornwallis became Campbell's first stakes winner in 1971, she has been followed by such Dogwood notables as Dominion, Domynsky, Nassipour, Southjet, Wallenda, Trippi, Smok'n Frolic, Limehouse, Cotton Blossom and Aikenite. Dogwood won its first Eclipse Award in 1987 with the Steeplechaser Inlander. Dogwood raced 1990 Preakness Stakes winner Summer Squall, and his daughter Storm Song, who won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies in 1996 and became the stable's second Eclipse Award winner. Dogwood has raced 76 stakes winners (including 14 grade I winners) and six million-dollar earners.
"Very few people are pioneers and trendsetters in their line of business. Cot Campbell has been just that with the racing partnership concept-not only introducing it, but doing it at the highest level and with class all the way," said Todd Pletcher, the five-time Eclipse Award winner as Outstanding Trainer, who has trained stakes winners for Campbell since 1996.
In addition to his racing interests, Campbell has served the industry in a variety of capacities. He was a founding member of the National Thoroughbred Association, which laid the groundwork for the National Thoroughbred Racing Association. In 2004, Campbell was the Honor Guest of the Thoroughbred Club of America and that same year was called upon to chair the Thoroughbred industry-sponsored Sales Integrity Task Force. He has been the recipient of the John W. Galbreath Award for entrepreneurial excellence and leadership in the horse industry. In 1993, Campbell established the Dogwood Dominion Award honoring the "unsung heroes" of racing. It was named Dominion in honor of the Dogwood-owned horse's hard-working, blue-collar running style.
Prior to his move into Thoroughbred racing, Campbell, who was born in New Orleans, was a successful advertising executive. He started his own agency, Burton-Campbell Inc., in 1964 and helped grow it to become one of the largest advertising agencies in the South. Campbell has written three books on racing: "Lightning in a Jar," "Rascals and Racehorses," and "Memoirs of a Longshot". Campbell and his wife, Anne, have two daughters, Lila and Cary.