About Catherine Day Phillips
“Generations carry the successes of those before us and through their wisdom and guidance come to the foundation from which we achieve our own success.”
Catherine Day Phillips, a third-generation horse trainer, has built her business on the knowledge and experience rooted by her maternal grandmother, Mrs. C.W. Burns, a Thoroughbred owner and breeder, and her mother and father, both successful Thoroughbred trainers.
Now in her 27th year as a Trainer, Catherine and her crew are dedicated handlers with an attention to detail for developing and preparing Thoroughbreds to race.
A winner of multiple graded stakes as well as multiple Sovereign Awards, Catherine has career earnings of close to $20 million, winning or placing in 961 of her 2239 (43%) career starts as a trainer thus far.
With an exclusive barn of 50 stalls at Woodbine, Canada’s premier Thoroughbred Racetrack, and her own family farm with lush paddocks just North of Toronto, Catherine has the opportunity to bring out the best in her racing Thoroughbreds. Allowing downtime at the farm when needed, Catherine can provide a winning edge when it comes to preparing horses to race.
While Catherine and her husband Todd Phillips race and breed horses under the moniker Kingfield Racing Stable, more than 75 percent of her training operation is made up of client-owned horses.
Whether you are new to owning Thoroughbreds or are an existing owner looking for a change Catherine offers interaction, communication, and ultimately a rewarding experience.
Competing in the show horse ring from a very young age, Catherine followed family tradition and made a natural progression to the racetrack.
While attending St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, Catherine applied for her trainer license after working for her father, James Day (1968 Equestrian Olympic Gold Medalist), trainer for the powerful Sam-Son Farm during the era of the great Dance Smartly, Hangin on a Star, Regal Classic, Regal Intention and Sky Classic. Catherine’s mother, Dinny Day, was also an accomplished trainer and both parents were instrumental in exposing her to high standards and quality when racing Thoroughbreds.
Balancing a successful career and a family, Catherine is thankful for the support of her husband Todd (left) and their sons, Blake (19 years old – on the right) and Colton (17 years old) as well as the loyal and experienced staff both at the track and at their home on the farm.
Catherine Day Phillips is a multiple Graded Stakes and Sovereign Award-winning trainer achieving success with both client-owned and her Kingfield Racing Stable homebred or owned Thoroughbreds throughout her 27-year career.
2020 a Year of Uncertainty and Change
When the world turned upside down in the Spring of 2020 so did horse racing. While Catherine was wintering with a string of horses at Payson Park in Florida, not long after Mustn’t Grumble made the stable’s debut start for 2020 in March, Canadians were advised to make a hasty return to Canada as the pandemic intensified throughout the world.
After returning with her stable of horses to Woodbine Racetrack the scheduled April 18 start to the race meeting was delayed while all horses were allowed to remain in light training until further notice.
On June 4 racing in Ontario resumed and owner Mark Breen’s 3 year-old gelding, Yola, recorded the first win of the year for trainer Catherine Day Phillips on June 13.
The filly, La Paquita, owned by Nick Harris, entered the winner’s circle on July 3, after an impressive 5-1/4 length win.
Four year-old Encierro, owned by George Ledson, Willow Pond Stable and Anderson Farms Ontario Inc. made his 2020 debut a winning one going wire to wire in Allowance company on July 11.
Mark Breen’s Killag Katie and Catherine’s Kingfield Racing Stable, Rod Ferguson and Anderson Farms Ontario, Inc. owned Holyfield were the stable stars for August. Killag Katie rallied late to win a claiming race on August 13 and Holyfield beat a full field of maiden special weights on August 22 to break out of the maiden category before competing in the Queen’s Plate in September.
Willow Pond Stable’s 3 year-old homebred filly, Barkin, rallied from the back of the pack to break her maiden in style, blowing past the field to win by 6-3/4 lengths on October 1.
In a year filled with uncertainty and change Catherine recorded 6 victories, 8 seconds and 12 thirds in 98 starts with close to $416,230 in earnings.
Success Continued in 2019
In 2019 Catherine Day Phillips’s stable of young horses had their share of wins and places along with the returning stars who recorded additional wins in 2019. With 111 starts, Catherine’s runners earned 16 victories, 14 seconds and 13 thirds with close to $930,000 in earnings.
After wintering at Palm Meadows and racing a Gulfstream Park for the winter with a string of horses Catherine returned to Woodbine in early spring and started off the season with 2 wins (Notice Me & Smooth Talk) and 3 places in the first 5 starts.
Anderson Farms Ontario Inc. homebred filly, Katie Baby and Hillsbrook Farms gelding, Last Sunrise, joined the win roster in May.
Three year-old gelding, Encierro, owned by George Ledson, Willow Pond Stable and Anderson Farms Ontario Inc. proved he belonged on the turf with a 5 -1/4 length maiden breaking win for $95,000 in early June.
2017 Woodbine Oaks winner, Dixie Moon finished fourth in an Allowance followed by a third in the Trillium Stakes in the spring of 2019. The Champion mare was retired in September by the Fitzhenrys to join their broodmare band after two additional out of contention starts later in the season.
Doug Anderson, Rita Eskudt, Peter Mosakos, Kingfields Racing Stable and Carnegie Hill Stable’s Split My Pants, finished off the month of June with a $67,500 Allowance win for the partnership.
2018 Sovereign Award Champion Turf Male and Champion Older Male, Mr. Havercamp, got a chance at redemption when he returned to New York to compete in the (G3) Forbidden Apple Stakes for Trainer Catherine Day Phillips and owner/breeders Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry. Finishing fourth in last year’s edition, the race was bumped up from a listed to a Grade 3 Stake and hosted at Saratoga Racecourse in 2019. Mr. Havercamp had a clean trip on the inner turf and with a determined effort in the stretch got up for the win.
Three year-old filly, This Round’s Mine, broke her maiden for $40,000 in July for PA Fullerton Inc. and Kingfields Racing Stable also Mark Breen’s four year-old Killag Katie was an Allowance winner in August.
It was the two year olds that took the spotlight beginning in July with gelding, Keep on Truckin’, impressive in his debut July 7 with an eleven length win to break his maiden in style. That effort was followed by a 7-3/4 length romp in the Clarendon Stakes in early August for owners George Ledson, Brian Ledson and Anderson Farms Ontario Inc.
Two year-old gelding Barilko was an impressive winner in his first start, winning in Maiden Special Weight company at the end of July and also finished second in the Ontario Racing Stakes in September for owners Anderson Farms Ontario Inc., George Ledson and Scott Kelly.
Nick Harris’s two year-old , La Paquita, recorded her first career win in her second start in September with a driving 2-3/4 length win for $40,000. The partnership of John Fielding, Don Meehan and Peter Kirby enjoyed a $71,000 MSW win with their two year-old colt, Green Growth at the end of September.
Two year-old fillies Artie’s First Kiss, owned by Hubert Vester and Mustn’t Grumble owned by All My Hart Racing Inc. both had a win and a second in their two starts each in 2019.
Catherine Day Phillips records career best number of wins and purse earnings in 2018
After what could be considered rebuilding years in 2013 -2015, Trainer Catherine Day Phillips has continued trending upwards with the last three seasons (2016-2018) showing steady growth and success. In 2018 her trainees elevated her to be one of the top four trainers by purse earnings and the eighth winningest trainer at Woodbine in 2018.
In 2018 Catherine surpassed her career high in both number of wins and purse earnings, recording 29 wins and more than $2 million in purse earnings for the growing number of clients and partnerships that race under her care at Woodbine.
With 160 starts in 2018 Catherine’s trainees were in the top three 43% of the time with a final season total of 29 wins-29 seconds and 21 thirds. Catherine Day Phillips Trainer Profile
After wintering at Palm Meadows Training Centre and racing at Gulfstream Park in Florida and Keeneland in Kentucky in early 2018, it was Mexican Hat who recorded the first win of the season for Trainer Catherine Day Phillips. Owned by Narolla LLC and Anderson Farms Ontario Inc., Mexican Hat broke her maiden in a $61,000 Maiden Special Weight at Woodbine on May 20.
The next win for Catherine’s barn was the talented 3 year-old filly, Dixie Moon, who won the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks on June 9. This was the first Oaks win for longtime breeders and owners Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry and the second Oaks win in three years for Catherine Day Phillips who trained Neshama to her Oaks win in 2016. Dixie Moon would go on to also win the Carotene Stakes later in the season in 2018 and was a Sovereign Award nominee for Outstanding Three-year-old Filly of 2018.
Catherine Day Phillips trained the Fitzhenry’s Mr. Havercamp to three stakes wins in 2018, the Steady Growth Stakes, the G2 Play the King and the G2 Autumn Stakes. Mr. Havercamp was also a close up second in the $800,000 G1 Ricoh Woodbine Mile in 2018. Mr. Havercamp was named 2018 Sovereign Award Champion Older Male and Champion Turf Male and was a finalist for Horse of the Year.
Another Catherine Day Phillips learner, Artilena, closed out her two year-old season with two wins, the last of which was in the $125,000 Ontario Lassie Stakes for owners George Phillip Ledson, Braconcrest Inc., Anderson Farms Ontario Inc and Catherine’s Kingfield Racing Stable Ltd. on December 9 at Woodbine.
Trainer Catherine Day Phillips 2018 winners include:
May 20 – Mexican Hat – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
June 9 – Dixie Moon – $500,000 Woodbine Oaks
June 15 – Katie Baby – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
June 16 – Mr. Havercamp – $100,000 Steady Growth Stakes
July 7 – Eliza Jane – $20,800 Maiden Claiming
July 7 – Veil – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
July 27 – Mexican Hat – $61,000 Allowance
August 1 – Veil – $61,000 Allowance
August 1 – Killag Katie – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
August 4 – Sandy Stats – $27,200 Maiden Claiming
August 15 – Watch Me Strut – $23,500 Claiming
August 22 – Artilena – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
August 25 – Mr. Havercamp – $175,000 G2 Play the King Stakes
August 31 – Notice Me – $45,000 Maiden Special Weight
September 16 – Veil – $62,300 Allowance Optional Claiming
September 19 – Tomato Bisque – $24,100 Claiming
September 29 – Pictures of You – $20,800 Maiden Claiming
October 14 – Dreams Are Free – $61,000 Allowance
October 20 – Dixie Moon – $125,000 Carotene Stakes
October 26 – Fort Wise Treaty – $24,100 Claiming
October 26 – Pictures of You – $24,100 Claiming
November 3 – Mr. Havercamp – $175,000 G2 Autumn Stakes
November 24 – Sandy Bay – $61,000 Maiden Special Weight
November 28 – Pictures of You – $20,000 Claiming
November 30 – Split My Pants – $39,800 Optional Claiming
December 9 – Artilena – $125,000 Ontario Lassie Stakes
December 12 – Smooth Talk – $16,000 Claiming
December 16 – Killag Katie – $61,000 Allowance
Once again Catherine and a contingent of horses have been training at Palm Meadows Training Centre, resting at an farm in Ocala, and racing at Gulfstream Park in Florida (and at Keeneland beginning in April) in preparation for Woodbine’s 2019 season scheduled to begin April 20.
Catherine Day Phillips Training Highlights:
Catherine Day and Todd Phillips were married in 1999 and the couple formed the Ten Goal Racing Syndicate consisting of 18 new & existing owner partnership shares.
At the beginning of the new millennium Catherine would win her first Graded Stakes event with multiple stakes winner, HEAT IT UP, a filly she purchased for $6,000 as a yearling in 1998.
In 2002, Catherine purchased A BIT O’GOLD ($60,000) and CROWN COUNCEL ($32,000) as yearlings at the Canadian Select Sale for the newly formed Two Bit Racing Syndicate which consisted of six new partnership owners. That same year, Catherine’s Kingfield Racing Stables homebred Bravely, ran a cracker of a race to almost win the $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes.
In 2003 Kingfield Racing Stable homebred GERAINT, and stablemate AGOLO both won Stakes races at Fort Erie Race Track which proved to be a prelude to a spectacular stakes winning autumn when Ten Goal Stable’s WINTER WHISKEY, and Two Bit Racing Stable’s A BIT O’GOLD won multiple stakes races and placed the juvenile pair among the Winterbook favourites for the 2004 Queen’s Plate.
A BIT O’GOLD, favoured to win, finished a close second in the 2004 Queen’s Plate however went on to win the next two legs of the Canadian Triple Crown series, the Prince of Wales Stakes and the Breeders’ Stakes as well as the Ontario Derby. His achievements earned him Canada’s Champion three-year-old Male honours that year.
In 2005, A BIT O’GOLD continued to provide the Two Bit Racing Stable with thrills by winning multiple Graded Stakes and a trip to the coveted Breeders’ Cup Championship races. Sadly, due to an injury sustained in the Breeders’ Cup race, it was the last race of his career. A BIT O’GOLD was named Canada’s Horse of the Year as well as Champion Older Male and Champion Turf Male that year.
That same year stablemate, JAMBALAYA, bought by Catherine for $2500 as a yearling, made his three-year-old year a winning one, with an eight length win in the $500,000 Breeders’ Stakes, and a win in the Grade 3 Saranac Stakes at historic Saratoga Racecourse. JAMBALAYA was runner up finalist for Champion Turf Male to A BIT O’GOLD and both are currently living out their retirement years at Catherine’s Kingfield Farms.
Not to be outdone by the boys, Kingfield Racing Stable’s homebred filly, INVITATIONAL, was the Carotene Stakes winner in 2005 as well.
Coming off of a win in the Singspiel Stakes in 2006, JAMBALAYA pulled off a crowning year in 2007 by winning multiple graded stakes including the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Breeders’ Cup Turf Stakes and the Grade 3 Pan American Handicap at Gulfstream Park in Florida as well as a remarkable win in the prestigious Grade 1 Arlington Million at Arlington Park in Chicago, Illinois.
Filly VAN LEAR ROSE took centre stage in 2008. The Kingview Racing Stable homebred won the Muskoka Stakes, the Grade 3 Mazarine Stakes and was a respectable sixth in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies race on her way to being named Canada’s Champion Two Year- Old Filly of the Year.
In 2009 Catherine sent out 140 starters and achieved more than $1.1 million in earnings for the second consecutive year.
In 2011 WEEKEND ROMANCE won the Passing Mood Stakes for owners Annecchini and D’Alimonte Holdings Inc. and Kingfield Racing Stables, while stablemate Head Honcho provided Catherine with her third consecutive Queen’s Plate competitor as a trainer. Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry’s homebred Mendocino Beano finished third in an all out drive in the Grade 3 Ontario Colleen Stakes.
Catherine continued to record 22 wins in 2012 and 2013. In 2014 juvenile filly, Weekend in Malibu, provided an exciting start for partnership owners Carnegie Hill Stable & Kingfield Racing Stable. Their filly continued to run competitively throughout 2015 with a win and 2 seconds before being claimed in her winning first start of 2016.
In 2015 Kingfield Racing Stable and partners Sean Fitzhenry, John Fielding and Anderson Farms Ontario Inc. were pictured in the Stakes winner enclosure with GET RHYTHM after winning the Ontario Debutante Stakes. She also finished a solid third in the Fanfreluche Stakes. Kingfield Racing Stable and Carnegie Stable also campaigned two juveniles in partnerships, eventual Oaks winner NESHAMA, and Aye Aye Captain, who won his first two starts and finished second, less then two lengths behind winner, Ami’s Gizmo in the Kingarvie Stakes. Aye Aye Captain continues to campaign and was a close fifth in the Plate Trail Stakes this year.
Neshama gives her Connections first Oaks win
2016 started with a bang with owner Marla & Mitch Kursner (Carnegie Stable) teaming up with Catherine’s Kingfield Racing Stable Ltd., David Anderson (Anderson Farms (Ontario) Inc.) and John Fielding to win the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks Classic with 3 year-old filly NESHAMA.
Catherine and partners purchased NESHAMA in 2013 out of the CTHS (Ontario) Canadian Select Yearling Sale for $60,000. She won in her second start as a two-year-old in 2015 and was nabbed at the wire to finish second in the South Ocean Stakes by a nose.
After wintering in Florida NESHAMA returned to Woodbine and finished fifth in the Lady Angela Stakes, and had an Allowance win before her exciting win in the Oaks. During that race NESHAMA lost a shoe and had a few cuts and was given some time off at the farm before returning to training for the Bison City Stakes where she gamely finished a close third.
Her most recent start was in the third leg of the Canadian Triple Tiara series, the Wonder Where Stakes where she finished a game fifth on the turf.
NESHAMA winner of this year’s $500,000 Woodbine Oaks & third in Bison City Stakes
Owner: Carnegie Hill Stable (Mitch Kursner), Kingfield Racing Stable Ltd., Dave Anderson & John Fielding
Career Earnings (to date): $324,965