Honestly, where did the summer go? We have had the busiest August-September ever but we’re happy to catch a breather finally and take in what a productive year it’s been so far. I’ll admit my birthday this year is going to be extra tough without having Billy around, but what one can do is surround themselves with those they love and what better way to lift my spirits than to see our Princess and Prince this weekend?
Princess (A Pic by Mrwill) was such a sight for sore eyes. We’re so happy to see her back to her old self. She was beginning to get a bit antsy being on stall rest and also coming out of it, but she seems to have calmed down significantly thanks to the amazing work of her new mom Emily Fisher. Emily has been so patient bringing her around and Princess has never looked better! Cathy, Princess’ former owner was excited to see her as it had been a while and I decided to bring Amanda from Team Mr. Will, plus my BFF Habeyah up to see her. Amanda and Habeyah were a bit hesitant to feed Princess treats because she is so tall and towering, but after showing them the way – hands flat with carrots laid-out on the palm – they realized quickly there was nothing to be afraid of! They actually found Princess to be quite gentle and fuzzy. She definitely loves her treats so it should be no surprise how much she loves dressing-up for Halloween. We had so many little get-ups for Princess to try on and she nailed all the looks!
Emily has been keeping Princess busy with riding lessons and she seems to be taking to it very quickly!
So Princess also has an exciting new neighbour. Fort Erie‘s newly-crowned Horse of the year and veteran warrior SNIPER has retired officially and I’m happy to report they are in love! A celebrity power couple!
Our little Prince William (Mr Will) recently returned home to his family’s farm in Mono after a summer of training at Woodbine Racetrack. After training very forwardly, he’s had some minor setbacks and his Owner/Trainer Michelle Love has confirmed he will debut in 2020. She is very excited about his potential and she is doing the right thing, taking her time with him.
We made a quick visit to see him and he was in great spirits, taking handfuls of Peppermints from me. The handsome little devil looked so happy running around nursing a small cut he got playing with one of the new additions to the family. William‘s sis Anastasia (Show Some Skin) will make her debut this weekend and we’re so excited finally for our schedule to line-up right to see her run!
Now we did try the Halloween costumes with Mr Will but he wasn’t quite feeling it!
…but we love him all the same. What a face!
Earlier this Summer, Emily was kind enough to throw us a BBQ and Mr Will and Princess’ worlds both collided!
It’s been a hot summer and we know our Prince William (Mr Will) and Princess (A Pic by Mrwill) have been enjoying it!
It’s been about a month since we’ve seen our dear Princess but her Mom Emily Fisher has been wonderful keeping us posted on her updates. We’re so thrilled she’s finally able to go out and enjoy the sun and the grass after recovering fully from her injury which had her on stall rest for over a year. Emily has taken every precaution to ensure this doesn’t occur again and the wait has been worth it! We knew she would get here one day and she’s shown so much patience and deserves this happiness.
See how happy our big girl in pink looks!
Congrats also to Keveh Nicholl‘s, Princess’ new Papa, who not too long ago returned to riding on the local circuit and has picked-up some nice scores at both Fort Erie and Woodbine, including this one last weekend for Trainer Tedston Holder on STREET CAT SAM! You might recall when Princess was three, she spent the winter in Ocala, Florida training. Tedston was one of the people who took care of her down there. Amazing this all came back full circle!
She keeps growing! Princess with Keveh:
Our little Prince William (Mr Will) sure is developing quite a personality and his Mom, Trainer and Owner Michelle Love is thrilled how well he’s developing. She messaged me yesterday to tell me that his three-furlong breeze was super-professional, saying “He outworked his workmates and galloped our strongly”. He’s building endurance as we know his first breeze a furlong longer a couple weeks back had him tuckered-out. We’re so excited!
Amidst last week’s rainstorm and subsequent flooding, Michelle brought him out on the track for a jog and it was a learning experience seeing him react to the rain. She joked he was “like a puppy”. Wish I was there to see that and snap some pics!
His awesome workout:
Mr Will was feeling amazing after his breeze yesterday and snatched his Mom’s jacket and taunted her with it. Such a character! He probably meant to tell her it’s hot and that she didn’t need it.
Many thanks to his caretaker Detroit, who not only makes a killer Oxtail and Rice, but also does an amazing job ensuring he’s at his best.
We still don’t have a date when Mr Will is set to make his debut but he’s sure heading in the right direction fast.
We don’t believe the Queen’s Plate is only a few weeks away! That marks the official one year mark Princess (A Pic by Mrwill) left Woodbine to begin her life of retirement. Where did the time go?
We checked-in with our two godchildren this weekend and they’re both doing so amazingly well. You wouldn’t believe it, but Princess still is growing and she’s five-years-old. According to her Veterinarian, this isn’t normal! LOL She now enjoys her daily turnout on the field at her new summer residence at her Aunt Mandy‘s near Bolton. Also there are some of her new friends including Little Freddy Fisher, an adorable mini-pony owned by Emily Fisher, Princess‘ new mom. As it’s been a while since she’s been able to run free while recuperating from her injury, Emily is trying to keep her calm and safe while she gets accustomed to her new surroundings. Princess’ appetite still is as voracious as ever, as is expected of a growing girl!
See a clip of her with Emily. What a little cutie!:
On the Prince front, Mr Will has been progressing nicely for his mom, Michelle Love. He’s on a regular training schedule on the Main Track at Woodbine in the mornings and has been throwing bullet workouts every week since his first official workout May 17th. He’s been working in company with some other babies in his barn and Michelle tells us she’s very excited with how he’s coming along! It’s fascinating seeing his personality shape and he’s definitely got a bit of fire to him. It’s true what they say about firey Gingers! He isn’t quite as snuggly and treat-obsessed as Princess and he can get a little bit nippy at times, but he is undeniably a sweet boy who does like affection. There isn’t a date set yet for those wondering when he’ll debut at the races, but he definitely is showing ability!
Happy Easter from our little Prince William and Princess!🐇
It’s been a bit since we’ve checked in with you about our two stars. MR. WILL or William as we like to call him around the barn, is progressing great for his Owner and Trainer Michelle Love, going for regular jogs around the Training Track at Woodbine with his sis, a sweet two-year-old filly by hot sire Souper Speedy, who is unnamed but known right now as Anastasia (yes, as in Fifty Shades of Grey).
Michelle tells us, “He’s doing great! They ran down the lane for an 1/8th (one furlong) for the first time yesterday”. It is exciting seeing the little guy put together the building blocks to becoming a racehorse. The two also went for their first walk today with the weather a bit nicer out finally, getting acclimated with the track and surroundings, which will be crucial later as part of their pre-race when they transition to the Main Track at Woodbine later.
He definitely is a good student and something about his introvertedness tells us he means business. That aside, he is a bit of a cuddlebug and it made me so happy to see him warm-up to a Bunny plushie we brought one (one for his sis too, of course!). His caretaker Jayne who adores him so much, nicknamed him “Sucky Face” for his adorable pout. Michelle and I are actually shocked he hasn’t ripped it apart yet, so maybe he does have a gentle side!
Mr. Will x Bunny
Mr. Will x Jayne
Mr. Will and his loving Aunties Katya, Lauren x Brianna
Mr. Will at work under Nikki and his sis under his Mama, learning to be off the rail and on the rail
Princess (A PIC BY MRWILL) continues to recover at her temporary home out in Caledon and we’re totally with her in her restlessness for some good weather. For the first time ever, I heard her let out a nicker, signalling her eagerness for time outside her stall. Emily Fisher continues to do an amazing job caring for her and it shouldn’t be long before she gets that vet clearance to be able to go outside again and just be a horse! She’s definitely earned it and we can’t to see her run free outside.
We recently stopped by for a visit and Princess got to spend time with both her moms Cathy and Emily. We could see how happy she was for a bit of us time, snacking on all her favourites after finishing up her dinner.
A Pic by Mrwill with Cathy x Emily
See a couple candid clips of our stars:
We’re a bit early but wishing you all an amazing long weekend ahead! May you find many treasures on your hunt.
We look forward to seeing you at the races at Woodbine, with opening weekend being next weekend!
February was a big month for our dear Prince and Princess with both of them being born in the month! Princess (A Pic by Mrwill) celebrated her fifth birthday on February 5th and we were so happy to throw a little party for her where’s she staying and it was an amazing afternoon seeing her out of her stall, bandages off being spoiled!
Miraculously, she still is growing and while she’s a bit sore from her stall rest, she gets her regular massages which she loves. Emily, her Mama even showed us a few pointers how she likes to be massaged! She tells us Princess will take a year off to get better and just enjoy life. Motherhood will be looked at next year. We’re beyond excited for her! In the meantime she enjoys her hand walks with her Mama around the barn.
See some Snaps of our day together Emily, Sheri, Billy, Princess and I:
After our celebration, she had another party with Emily and there were little Princess Cupcakes! Amazing!
… and we must introduce you to our new friend at the barn, Lincoln. He literally is the cutest and Princess adores him!
Emily sent us this beautiful candid taken by her sister, Chantelle!
Prince (Mr Will) we hear has been training brilliantly and we’re super-stoked he’ll be arriving at Woodbine mid-March according to his his Mama/Owner/Trainer Michelle Love. She tells us, “Mr. Will is training like a dream. I’m so excited”. We’ll so be there to cheer him on as he trains. This doesn’t shock us at all as he oozes professionalism and looks and acts every bit a racehorse. Mr Will’s birthday is February 27th and he turned two officially, so feel free to drop him a line to wish him a Happy Birthday!
At long last, a special Holiday edition of Princess and now too, Prince Diaries! 2018 brought us several ups and downs but we end the year on a happy note knowing our dear Princess (A Pic by Mrwill) and Prince (Mr Will) were safe at home with their loving families. Life has been full of blessings and these two certainly bring us much joy.
We caught-up with Princess at her temporary home in Caledon on Christmas Day, meeting-up with her new Mama Emily Fisher who has done such a great job keeping her healthy. I couldn’t believe my eyes how great she looks – she just keeps growing and I’d guess she’s at least 17.5 hands tall now? To be conservative about her recovery, she’s on stall rest still, but enjoys occasional time outside her stall cross-tied while she is groomed or to say “hello” to her neighbours, including her buddy across the hall Esmeralda.
She’s been x-rayed and her injury is healing well, but Emily‘s focus is having her heal fully before she moves on to her next steps, whether it be showing at the Royal Winter Fair one day or motherhood. We are saddened that Emily’s beloved Don’s Folly had passed recently and we understand how trying it is picking-up the pieces again. Princess has been of great consolation and comfort to Emily, the sweet filly we’ve known her as always.
While it’s still early, some stallions are being scouted as a potential match for Princess and there are a couple leading Ontario stallions both Emily and her mom Michelle, who once worked with famed Kinghaven Farms, have in mind. Whatever choice Emily makes, we are thrilled for them and know they will make the right one come breeding season (beginning mid-February). I for one have been vocal about this flashy up-and-coming stallion at Frank Stronach‘s Adena Springs! We love the way his kids are looking and running so far.
Princess has developed a taste for unconventional treats and is absolutely obsessed with Rice Krispie Squares and Oatmeal Cookies. We spoiled her as she deserves with a gift basket containing several of her favourites. Her appetite is insatiable, destroying a platter of Fuji apple slices, two bags of mini carrots, cookies and squares quickly! It’s a wonder how she still looks so fit!
Emily still is dealing with the aftermath of Don’s Folly’s medical costs which went well above and beyond estimates prior to his passing. If you have anything you can give, please help via this GoFundMe.
Christmas wouldn’t have been complete without a visit to our Prince,Mr Will and we thought we’d gift him with his own first halter. We must say he looks rather dapper in it! Michelle and Rob Love (the latter who is an Outrider at Woodbine Racetrack, keeping horsepeople and horses safe especially when they break loose) have done an amazing job breaking him in and while he isn’t by any means sizey, he looks athletic and is a quick learner. We are in love with the beautiful white strip on his face, making him almost a spitting image of his Queen’s Plate-winning dad Not Bourbon.
Mr Will was just gelded (castrated) a few weeks back and we were advised he generally was well-behaved, although with their fillies and mares returning home for the winter, it was for the better with him starting to display “colt-ish” tendencies of late. Mr Will was on his best behaviour and even Billy was able to get up close to him without incident. He definitely is loved by the Loves (pun intended) and I get a kick out of the confusion adorable Miss Cailey Love gets when she’s told the real Mr Will is coming by to see Mr Will. We know Emily got confused when we asked her if she wanted to tag along with us to see Mr Will. In due time the world will know all about equine Mr Will!
2019 holds many exciting developments and stories about Princess and Prince and we can’t wait to share them with you! Happy Holidays!
It’s been about four months since Princess’ (A Pic by Mrwill) retirement as a racehorse and she’s settling in nicely into her new surroundings. While her new owner Miss Emily is awaiting the completion of some renovations at her home, including an indoor and outdoor stall for Princess, she’s been recovering from her fractured Sesamoid nicely at a boarding facility out in Caledon.
Cathy, Princess’ former owner and I decided to surprise her this past weekend and before we made our way in, she started nickering as soon as she heard our voices within earshot. We were overjoyed to see her in good spirits, slipping her fave Fuji apple slices and carrots through the bars of her stall.
Miss Maggie who owns the facility, was nice enough to open her stall for us after she finished her breakfast and she almost burst right through, wanting to come out and greet us. We estimate Princess will be on stall rest for about another month, but she’s doing it in style at least in a cute pink cast bandage from Miss Emily.
Princess has been a hit at the farm, which boards among other several gorgeous Paint ponies, with kids coming in throughout the week to receive riding lessons. One sweet girl named Victoria was so kind to write Princess this lovely note:
Aww! We’re glad to see we’re not the only ones who realize how special Princess is!
Miss Emily also reports to us that Princess has taken a liking to these things called Likits, which are like candy and a toy in one, providing her hours of entertainment in flavours like Apple, Banana, Carrot, Cherry, Garlic, Honey & Camomile, Mint, Molasses, Salt and Sport (Electrolyte). What will they think of next?
Great care and love go into Princess’ diet and we can some spot some dapples, a sign of good health, forming on her coat. She certainly has put on a little weight, but she looks fantastic and still v. fit. Surely she can’t wait to go out and show that all off!
Miss Emily although busy with work and eventing, always makes time in her day for our girl, sometimes spending hours just watching her:
And it seems she’s already v. popular with the boys…
Some more Snaps of our morning with Princess, as we her old and new family come together to celebrate her!
Cathy x Princess
Miss Michelle (Miss Emily’s mother) x Princess
Miss Maggie x Princess
Macy Mae x Princess
She always saves a snuggle for me:
We hope to pop by to see her again soon after her new home is ready! In the meantime, Princess is so proud of her former stablemate Aheadbyacentury who has been killing it in the Canadian Triple Crown thus far with second-place finishes in both the Queen’s Plate and Prince of Wales Stakes!
In the meantime, follow Princess’ daily adventures on Social Media:
Goodbyes are always a hard thing. Amidst all the bustle of the Queen’s Plate Festival this past weekend, we sent-off our dear Princess, A PIC BY MRWILL to begin her new life outside the Racetrack.
Some of you might remember Emily Fisher (@EmiFisher) who helped take care of Princess late in her two-year-old season. We played dress-up for Halloween together! Back then, she befriended Miss Emily‘s star athlete, multiple stakes winner Don’s Folly (Dons_Folly on Facebook), who went on to be crowned 2015 & 2016 Royal Winter Fair Thoroughbred Stallion Grand Champion as an eventer.
Princess and Miss Emily, Halloween 2016
After announcing her retirement in May, Miss Emily offered kindly to take ownership of Princess right away after a few options were examined for her aftercare. She has been a daily part of Princess‘ day, visiting her often in-between runs in her work day on the backstretch at Woodbine, coming with cuddles and treats. We know that Princess will be living her best life possible and be cared for with the special attention and love she deserves. She won’t be far from Woodbine, which makes it easier for us to visit her and we love this.
Miss Emily says: “I am beyond excited to have Princess join our family, I cannot thank John and Cathy enough for entrusting me with her rehabilitation and her life after racing. She has had a few setbacks, but I believe that she has a bright future ahead of her and I can’t wait to see what this girl is capable of! We have a long road ahead of us but it is looking bright. She handled her move so well and has settled into her new home. I have nothing but positive thoughts about how she will come out of this. There will be big things in this Princess’ future.”.
Motherhood definitely is in the books next for Princess after she gets the rest of the year to focus on healing, although her being developed into an eventer is a possibility too given that she has the perfect composition and demeanour for it. Whatever path fate leads her, we are thrilled for it and we will be there for her every step of the way with all our support.
Don’s Folly and Miss Emily
We’ve also expressed interest in sharing some of the future breeding costs together with Cathy, Princess’ previous Co-Owner, to pair her with an Ontario stallion. Believe me, we could go on all day about who would make the perfect father – the possibilities are infinite! Of course, Don’s Folly also is looking to establish himself as an Ontario stallion too and we would be happy too to see Princess be the mother of his first foal. There are several options, but all this is contingent on Princess‘ recovery and we place her wellness first.
We had one last hurrah at Woodbine with Princess this weekend and she was thrilled to get a visit from one of her biggest fans, Sean(@SPNation74) who was visiting from Massachussetts for the Queen’s Plate Festival.
Sean x Princess:
We also are thrilled for Princess‘ family at the John Ross barn and Aheadbyacentury on their fantastic second-place finish in the Queen’s Plate. He is all business and they all worked so hard for this!
See some Snaps of Princess’ goodbye to Woodbine. She got the quick go-ahead from Doctor Pete and boarded the truck like a true professional. Miss Emily and her friend Miss Chelsea came ready with Princess’ favourite haynet and some aromatherapy fly spray to keep those flies at bay.
While we’ll miss seeing Princess in her stall at Woodbine, this is only the beginning of forever for Princess and we are excited for her! We got so choked-up seeing her drive away.
Miss Emily checked-in with us last night to let us know that Princess has settled in nicely at her new home, “She’s great! She has settled in like a champ, cleaning-up her feed tub no problem. She had a sponge bath yesterday and will probably get another one today!”. That’s our Princess!
We bring you this latest Princess Diary with a heavy heart. After training very forwardly this spring, our dear PrincessA PIC BY MRWILL, sadly sustained a fractured Sesamoid in her front right leg Thursday morning. She had just completed a quick workout on Woodbine’s Dirt Training Track. Thankfully, Exercise Rider Ashlee Edwards could sense something was wrong near the end of the breeze and with some fast thinking, pulled her up right away and we are indebted for this. We admit there was worry and uncertainty receiving messages shortly after from concerned onlookers as she was vanned off, though we can confirm that Princess’ injury while fortunately not life-threatening, is career-ending.
Princess always has been thought-of highly by her “Dad” John Ross. He has been her biggest champion from the start, picking her out as HIP No. 164 at the 2015 Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society Premier Yearling Sale along with his partner, Princess’ “Mom” Cathy Wong. He’s been with her every step of the way from her battling an almost fatal infection as a baby to guiding her to the Winner’s Circle in what will be known as her final start last August. John never gave up on her, always taking the tougher route.
That taste of sweet victory was something I never will forget. My friends, Team Ross and I standing under the beating sun with Princess, veins protruding on her face after giving it her all in fight to the finish line in the longest race of her career. She was so brave and while sometimes lacking that punch in the final stretch, she wouldn’t be denied this time. I leaned-in to kiss her on her nose, dripping with hose water, trying to make sense of what just had happened. I wanted so desperately for everyone to see this filly, my namesake, as the winner I knew she was and after so many tries, it happened finally. The heavy weight of expectation lifted finally, we were free and had nothing more to prove.
While Princess isn’t the most accomplished horse in John‘s barn, she certainly is one of the most loved and we always made her feel like she was the most special. It is so hard to believe I’ll have to come to terms with walking by her stall and not seeing her there anymore. I will miss surprising her every week with a jumbo Fuji apple and a bag of miniature carrots, but not first without a spirited twirl from her and a cry to hurry-up. While she could never speak her appreciation, I knew in my heart what it meant to her that I made time to see her. Sometimes that even came with a kiss.
Princess earlier today:
Princess did everything we ever hoped of her and she made us all so proud. Even when she didn’t win, she almost always gave it her all and this is how we and her fans will remember her for in her career as an athlete. The outpour of support from bettors and fans online and at the track has been astounding in her brief career, normally securing her place as the betting favourite at post time. While John, Cathy, the Team and myself are all heartbroken that one road ends abruptly here, we are hopeful for what might come next.
While Princess has been unlucky in ways sustaining this her third injury in less than two years, she also has been blessed in so many other ways. Though hurt, every time she has stayed just enough out of harm’s way as if she were being saved for something greater.
John tells us, “Princess was a lovely filly to train. She has the best personality and we were looking forward to a great season with her. We will decide her future in the next few months. We hope most that she has a full recovery. Thanks to everyone for all your support. We are incredibly touched that you connect so much to her.”. Cathy adds, “She always held a special place in our hearts and when things got scary, we never doubted once that we did the right thing doing all we could for her. I remember naming her when she was a baby and how I couldn’t wait for The Jockey Club to approve it. It was one of my happiest moments having our picture taken together in the Winner’s Circle with Princess.”.
Cathy + Princess yesterday morning:
The next few months will be all about Princess’ rehabilitation and she will be remaining on the grounds at Woodbine for a while more. I intend to take full advantage of this and hope at some point we can give her fans (or as we call them her “priends”) a chance to say goodbye. While it still is very early to say, motherhood certainly is an option for her and we already quietly have received inquiries. It is shocking how quickly the word has spread, even though it shouldn’t have come as a surprise knowing how well loved she is. I for one am a huge fan of her being a broodmare prospect. With her sweet demeanour, beautiful conformation, competitive spirit and bloodlines which run deep in talent (including $1.1 million-earning champion Bear Now and $165k earner Classyshadesofgrey), we believe without a doubt that she is the perfect fit for the role of mom.
This all of course is dependent on Princess’ recovery and wellness and we will walk this path to healing together with her. Visiting her today, we feel good about her getting better soon. Her quality of life in this next phase is important equally to the great care she received when she was able to compete on the track.
Princess Diaries will still be coming and we look forward to sharing with you her journey ahead. How fittingly bittersweet is it that with all this talk of the Royal Wedding, our Princess too walks down the aisle to a new chapter in her life?
We hope your 2018 has been going amazing so far! It’s about time we checked-in with our favourite Princess, A PIC BY MRWILL. After a very cozy winter up in Waterdown under the wonderful care of Miss Tasha, Princess has returned back to Woodbine at long last.
We felt her struggle seeing her at the farm, anxious to get outside and do some running. Seeing her out this past Sunday going for her first jog in quite some time made us incredibly happy. We saw her jump for joy as soon as she stepped onto that dirt training track. As you might remember, Princess spent the fall and winter nursing an injury following her first win last August at Woodbine. She has literally been on stall rest since then.
She hit the track at 10:30 AM under her new exercise rider Richard who actually was amazing to pick-up our cell phone and give it back to us after seeing we dropped it near the training track. What can we say? We were so overcome with Princess Power that we got careless!
Princess went for an easy jog and her Daddy John Ross will have her take her time getting ready for an eagerly-awaited 2018 campaign now. John was pleased with the jog and she did everything just right. There is no set date for the return as Princess will tell us when she’s ready. Meanwhile, she looks in great shape and it shouldn’t be long before she’s fit enough to race. She is so happy to reunite with her Caretaker, Errol and he keeps telling me “She’s gonna win first time! Just watch!”. Joining the Ross Family is Zach, whom Princess is seen with below.
We celebrated Princess‘ fourth birthday in February, her birthday falling on February 5th. Our friends Bailey(@Starting_Gate) visiting from California, Keith (@TripleDeadHeat), Julie (@RedDogCW),Coco and Billy all came out for the occasion marked by lots of dress-up for Princess, apples, cupcakes and affection! Princess knows her Godbrother Billy who is going through Chemotherapy right now, is giving it his all and as always gives him a big kiss when he visits…which he secretly loves!
We look forward to sharing more Princess updates with you as they come! In the meantime, remember to follow her on the following channels as she readies her 2018 debut: