Monday, October 25, 2010

Woodbine Weekend Wrapup

Although there were a number of races in Toronto over the weekend, the Toronto mayoral election took the brunt of the media coverage. A race between Rob Ford and George Smitherman was wrongly billed by a number of sources as a "dead heat" as horse racing vocabulary seeped into the political arena once again. Call me pedantic, but the counts of these so-called dead-heats are never equal.

Technicalities aside, it was not much of a surprise on Monday night when the voters elected Rob Ford the new mayor of Toronto. With the Woodbine Live! project being one of the talking points of the election, Monday's broadcast posted on TROT Radio - a conversation between Woodbine's Jamie Martin and TROT's Norm Borg highlighted some of the elements of the election as it relates to Woodbine Live:

As the polls open this morning around the province of Ontario, one with implications to harness racing comes in Toronto's mayoral race as Rob Ford and George Smitherman battle down to the wire.

Ford has long supported a new casino for Toronto, which he would see placed at the new Woodbine Live! development, while Smitherman prefers a location closer to the downtown core.

"Rob Ford, being our ward councilor, has always been supportive of Woodbine generally and specifically the Woodbine Live! project," says Woodbine Entertainment Group's Executive Vice President of Racing, Jamie Martin. "It's a tight race between [Ford] and Mr. Smitherman and no matter who is successful in the election I'm sure the City of Toronto, who has been supportive of the Woodbine Live! project, will continue to be."

Martin and Trot Radio's Norm Borg also discuss what this might mean for the expansion of gaming at Woodbine, as well as why the Mohawk Summer meet was up in handle.

To listen to the full broadcast, CLICK HERE.

* Let's hope that Mayor Ford has a few ideas in place to solve the traffic issues that plagued DRF's Steven Crist who was recentlyJammed Up In Toronto. My own journey from downtown Toronto to Woodbine has been plagued on numerous occasions throughout the summer by closures of the Gardiner Expressway.

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The classy Rahy's Attorney proved his brilliance with an outstanding stretch run in the Bunty Lawless to put away Sand Cove by an increasing margin when it seemed easier to falter. Trainer Ian Black was clearly happy with his veteran gelding as reported by Bill Tallon for the DRF:

“I was very happy, and proud of him,” said Black, who conditions Rahy’s Attorney, a homebred 6-year-old gelding for Joe and Ellen MacLellan and partners. “He really ran the last part. He just outfinished that other horse.”

This year, Rahy’s Attorney also won the With Approval for Ontario foals, and finished second in stakes here, in Philadelphia, and at Gulfstream Park. His seasonal bankroll stands at $276,200 from eight starts and his career total at $1,921,392.

Rahy's Attorney will continue with his racing career come the new year in Florida as in previous campaigns. The same report advises that another Black trainee, Fifty Proof, is on his way to Japan:

Black sent Rahy’s Attorney to Japan’s Kyoto Racecourse in 2008 for the Group 1 Mile Championship. He plans to send Fifty Proof to Japan this year.

Coming off a close fifth-place finish in the Grade 1 Canadian International, Fifty Proof has been invited to run in the Grade 1 Japan Cup at Tokyo Racecourse on Nov. 28.

“All things being well, we’ll be there,” he said.

The Japan Cup, a 1 1/2-mile turf race over a left-handed course, offers a total purse of $5.87 million with almost $2.8 million earmarked for the winner.

Rahy's Attorney, "all class and determination" wins the 2010 Bunty Lawless S.

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Sam-Son Farms colt Hotep put in an impressive performance winning the $100K Mobil S. over the excellent Stormy Lord. Hotep gained an advantage over Stormy Lord when the race was moved from turf to poly, but a sharp ride by jockey Patrick Husbands also gave the Sam-Son horse an advantage as the veteran jock pushed Hotep to the lead early and changed the pace of the race. When Stormy Lord moved to take over the lead at the top of the lane, the gutsy Hotep proved to have plenty in the tank and hustled home a winner.

While Hotep is likely done for the year, there is a good chance that Stormy Lord will race at least once more in the G3 Commonwealth Turf at Churchill Downs on November 13th.

Hotep wins the 2010 Mobil S.

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If Rahy's Attorney put in the classiest move of the weekend when accelerating away from Sand Cove, then perhaps the most visually appealing race of the weekend was the last-to-first charge of first-time starter Inglorious to win the Fanfreluche.

After completely missing the break, Inglorious was nursed calmly at the back of the pack by Chantal Sutherland before circling the field with ease and accelerating to a length and three quarter victory over Dreamy Moonlite and Weekend Romance.

A rather humourous quote from conditioner Josie Carroll outlined the ups and downs of the life of a conditioner. “She was ready, and the spot was there,” said Carroll. “She’s been a bit slow leaving the gate; that was our only concern. She popped out of there really well two days ago, but obviously she forgot that.”

Perhaps there will be more gate-schooling for Inglorious in the future but there's no doubting the speed and fitness of the youngster.

Inglorious wins the 2010 Fanfreluche S.

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A trio of horses with Canadian connections made the trip to Keeneland on Saturday to contest the G2 Raven Run for 3yo fillies on the poly. Woodbine was represented by 2009 Sovereign award winner Negligee, the Brian Lynch trained Platinum Exchange and jockey Chantal Sutherland who piloted Kitty in a Tizzy.

All looked good in the early going for Platinum Exchange when leading the field into the opening quarter but the 21-1 shot stopped at the half finishing last in the thirteen horse field. Negligee appeared to be in good position sitting sixth at the half under a hold by Miguel Mena but had nothing to offer her jock when asked. Best of all three locals was Kitty in a Tizzy who recovered from an awkward start and then worked to make up ground. Jockey Sutherland kept at the filly through the stretch but did not have enough to get past Hilda's Passion who cruised to a 3/4 length victory. Kitty in a Tizzy would finish fourth behind Decelerator and Tremendamente Loca.

Hilda's Passion wins the Raven Run

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We're quickly closing in on the 2010 Breeders' Cup which will be held on November 5th and 6th at Churchill Downs. The informative Breeders Cup website is keeping track of all the stars leading up to the two-day championship and as an added feature has a page dedicated to the marvelous mare Zenyatta. Check out Zenyatta2010.Com for photos, facts, videos and commentary on the horse who finished second to Rachel Alexandra in 2009 Horse of the Year voting.

Zoom! Zenyatta puts in a sharp 7f in 1:27:1 at Hollywood Park under Mike Smith

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Keep track of the latest horse racing news by clicking into TripleDeadHeat's Woodbine News page or join in on the conversation by following TripleDeadHeat on Twitter.

1 comment:

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