Knicks Go
Knicks Go stretched out to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Photo by Tim Sudduth/Breeders’ Cup/Eclipse Sportswire/CSM.

A pair of Maryland-bred Breeders’ Cup winners top the latest edition of the Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred/The Racing Biz Top Midlantic-bred Poll, released December 10.

As he has been in every poll of 2021, Knicks Go tops the list. The Paynter horse posted a dominant win in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Del Mar to cap a season in which he won three Grade 1 races and five races overall.

Bred by Angie Moore, Knicks Go, the near-certain national Horse of the Year, has now won more than $8.6 million. He’s being pointed to one final start, in the Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park, before moving on to stallion duty. He’s trained by Brad Cox for Korea Racing Authority.

Aloha West, ninth in the November poll prior to the Breeders’ Cup, jumped up to second after he was up in time to win the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint. A four-year-old colt by Hard Spun, Aloha West has won five races and more than $1.3 million in this, his first season of racing.

He was bred in Maryland by Katy Voss and the late Bobby Manfuso and is one of two horses in the top 10 that they bred. He’s trained by Wayne Catalano for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners.

With the ascension of Aloha West, Chub Wagon, second a month ago, dropped to third. Idle since a win in the Sept. 25 Plum Pretty Stakes, Chub Wagon will finish the season with eight wins from nine starts and earnings of $487,400. She’s a homebred for George Chestnut and Joe-Dan Farm and is trained by Guadalupe Preciado.

In fourth on the list, and appearing for the first time this year, is the four-year-old Maryland-bred Field Pass. The Lemon Drop Kid colt notched his second graded stakes win this year – and the fifth of his career – in the Grade 2 Seabiscuit Handicap at Del Mar Nov. 27. He’s trained by Mike Maker for Three Diamonds Farm and was bred by Mark Brown Grier.

Dropping from third last month to round out the top five is the Pennsylvania-bred Beren. A three-year-old colt by Weigelia, Beren most recently was a very good second in the Steel Valley Sprint at Mahoning Valley Race Course. Trained by Butch Reid for St. Omer’s Farm and Chris Feifarek, Beren has won seven of 12 starts while earning $469,790 this season.

The top 10 are rounded out by Jaxon Traveler, Caravel, Chess Chief, Hello Beautiful, and Cordmaker.

Of the top 10, six were bred in Maryland, with three bred in Pennsylvania. One, Chess Chief, was bred in Virginia. Seven of the top 10 were males, and three were females.

The monthly Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred is the only publication devoted to Thoroughbred breeding and racing in the Mid-Atlantic region. The Racing Biz, an online publication, is the independent voice for mid-Atlantic racing and breeding.

The poll is conducted of media members and others involved in the Thoroughbred industry and restricted to horses that have run in 2021 and were bred in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey, Delaware, and the Carolinas.


  1. Knicks Go (MD), 5H by Paynter-Kosmo’s Buddy, by Outflanker; bred by Angie Moore and trained by Brad Cox for Korea Racing Authority. 2021 highlights: Won G1 Breeders’ Cup Classic, G1 Whitney S., G1 Pegasus World Cup, G3 Lukas Classic, G3 Prairie Meadows Cornhusker H. Last month: 1.
  2. Aloha West (MD), 4C by Hard Spun-Island Bound, by Speightstown; bred by Robert Manfuso and Katharine Voss and trained by Wayne Catalano for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners. 2021 highlights: Won G1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint, 2nd G2 Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix S. Last month: 9.
  3. Chub Wagon (PA), 4F by Hey Chub-Takin the Plunge, by Lion Heart; bred by Joe-Dan Farm and George Chestnut and trained by Guadalupe Preciado for Daniel Lopez and George Chestnut. 2021 highlights: Won Plum Pretty S., Roamin Rachel S., Dashing Beauty S., Shine Again S., Skipat S., Unique Bella S. Last month: 2.
  4. Field Pass (MD), 4C by Lemon Drop Kid-Only Me, by Runaway Groom; bred by Mark Brown Grier and trained by Michael Maker for Three Diamonds Farm. 2021 highlights: Won G2 Seabiscuit H., G3 BWI Turf Cup. Last month: Also receiving votes.
  5. Beren (PA), 3C by Weigelia-Silmaril, by Diamond; bred by Susan Quick and Christopher Feifarek and trained by Butch Reid for St. Omer’s Farm and Christopher Feifarek. 2021 highlights: Won Danzig S., Parx Summer Sprint S., Gold Fever S., Paradise Creek S., Crowd Pleaser S. Last month: 3.
  6. Jaxon Traveler (MD), 3C by Munnings-Listen Boy, by After Market; bred by Dr. & Mrs. A. Leonard Pineau and trained by Steve Asmussen for West Point Thoroughbreds and Marvin Delfiner. 2021 highlights: Won Star de Naskra S., Bachelor Stakes, 2nd G3 Chick Lang S., 3rd G3 Quick Call S. Last month: 6.
  7. Caravel (PA), 4F by Mizzen Mast-Zeezee Zoomzoom, by Congrats; bred by Elizabeth Merryman and trained by Graham Motion for Bobby Flay and Elizabeth Merryman. 2021 highlights: Won G3 Caress S., 3rd G1 Highlander S. Last month: 10.
  8. Chess Chief (VA), 5H by Into Mischief-Un Blessed, by Mineshaft; bred by Morgan’s Ford Farm and trained by Dallas Stewart for Estate of James Coleman, Jr.. 2021 highlights: Won G2 New Orleans Classic, 3rd G2 Alysheba, 3rd G3 Mineshaft. Last month: 8.
  9. Hello Beautiful (MD), 4F by Golden Lad-Hello Now, by Tiznow; bred by Hillwood Stables LLC and trained by Brittany Russell for Madaket Stables LLC, Albert Frassetto, Mark Parkinson, K-Mac Stable and Magic City Stables LLC. 2021 highlights: Won Maryland Million Distaff, Weathervane S., Alma North S., What A Summer S. Last month: 5.
  10. Cordmaker (MD), 6G by Curlin-Tanca, by Polish Numbers; bred by Robert Manfuso and Katharine Voss and trained by Rodney Jenkins for Hillwood Stables LLC. 2021 highlights: Won Richard W. Small S., Victory Gallop S., Harrison Johnson Memorial S. Last mont: Also receiving votes.

Also receiving votes: Vault, Horologist, The Critical Way, Street Lute, Princess Kokachin, Muad’dib, Whereshetoldmetogo, Leader of the Band, Attachment Rate, Boldor, Star of Night, Valued Notion, Largent, Harpers First Ride, American Dubai, Door Buster, Bella Aurora, Midnight Obsession, Prendimi

Note: All horses listed at their 2021 ages.

Participating Voters: Ted Black (freelance writer), Michael Campbell (Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association of New Jersey), Joe Clancy (Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred), Cindy Deubler (Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred), Linda Dougherty (freelance), Debbie Easter (Virginia Thoroughbred Association), Paul Espinosa (Charles Town Races), Sara Gordon (Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred), Cricket Goodall (Maryland Horse Breeders Association), Sara Gordon (Maryland Horse Breeders Association), Jim Hague (freelance), Nick Hahn (freelance), Carol Holden (West Virginia Breeders Classics), Tom LaMarra (Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association), Jeff Nations (freelance), Vinnie Perrone (freelance), Frank Petramalo (Virginia Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association), John Piassek (freelance), Gary Quill (The Racing Biz), David Richardson (Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association), Brian Sanfratello (Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association), Sal Sinatra (Maryland Jockey Club), Chris Sobocinski (Delaware Park), Dan Tordjman (freelance), Frank Vespe (The Racing Biz), Bill Watson (freelance), Lydia Williams (freelance), Bobby Zen (freelance).