Million-dollar racehorse among those killed in Puslinch barn fire

Apprentice Hanover, one of over 40 racehorses killed in a devastating barn fire in Puslinch, Ont., was worth more than a million dollars, trainer says.

Apprentice Hanover was one of trainer Ben Wallace's nearly 20 horses killed in the barn fire

A horses trains at Classy Lanes Stables in Puslinch, Ontario. A fire in one of the facility's barn late Monday night claimed the lives of over 40 horses. (Michael Burns/Mohawk Raceways/Facebook)

Apprentice Hanover, one of over 40 racehorses killed in a devastating barn fire in Puslinch, Ont., was worth more than a million dollars according to his trainer, Ben Wallace. 

"It's a very, very traumatic situation," he said. 

Wallace has been in the business of training racehorses for 45 years, but says working with Apprentice Hanover was a once in a lifetime opportunity. 

"You just don't get those horses anymore so … you never get a second chance." 

I've lost everything.- Ben Wallace, horse trainer at Classy Lane Stables

The horse was a Standardbred, the breed of horse used for harness racing. Unlike Thoroughbred racing, where jockeys ride horses as they gallop around a track, harness racing sees horses stick to a slower pace, while the jockey rides behind the horse in a small, two-wheeled cart.

Standardbred Canada lists Apprentice Hanover's career winnings as $1,022,411. The nearly six-year-old horse, born in March 2010, had started in 75 races and won 22. The horse placed second in another 12 races and third in 13 more races since it started competing.

Trainer's livelihood destroyed by fire

Trainer Ben Wallace with Penji Hanover, a horse which died in the fire. (Ben Wallace)

In an emotional interview with CBC News, Wallace said he lost 16 horses on top of Apprentice Hanover in the fire. 

"The smoke was so intense that saving a horse was out of the question," he said.

"A horse by nature doesn't want to leave the barn anyway. It's their home, their safety spot, and there's no coming out and they just perished."

"I've lost everything," he said. "I don't have so much as a stopwatch anymore."