ascot aug08
This is a single article. Click HERE to go to the main page.

Monday, May 12, 2008



Patrick at HANDRIDE reports on his blog this morning that HARLEM ROCKER will NOT be in the Preakness on Saturday..

Patrick ( writes...

"Mr Stronach has decided against the Preakness for Harlem Rocker (15). The focus will remain on the Queen's Plate. Though I'd like to see some talk of the Met Mile now that Bustin Stones (175) is out. I got this information from Adena Racing Venture."


Carlo and Lou Tucci (Pictured above with trainer Sid Attard, far left, on either side of Sovereign Award) won THREE RACES Sunday at Woodbine with THREE DIFFERENT TRAINERS and JOCKEYS.
Certainly it would be hard to find out if this is a record but the guess would be that such a feat is unprecedented.

The day kicked off for the family with CIANO NIGHTS in race 2, a colt by Ciano Cat trained by Danny Vella who won an allowance race under Emma-Jayne Wilson.

Tucci Stables', one of the leading owners this year in Canada, also celebrated another stakes win by MY LIST, who came from last place to win the Grade 3 Hendrie Stakes yesterday.

And in the finale, DANCINGONTHEGREEN won his 10th race in only his 15th career start when he won for $12,500 claiming for trainer SID ATTARD and jockey CONSTANT MONTPELLIER.
The 5yo horse is a Florida bred by Dance Master.

MY LIST'S Hendrie score - a 93 Beyer Figure for 1:15. 73 over a very fast Polytrack that got faster as the day went on- was a stunner.

The Banker's Gold 4yo was far behind early in the 6 1/2 furlong race while Marina Ballerina went sizzling fractions on the lea dinto a strong headwind.

In the stretch, the speed collapsed and ONE ACROSS darted to the lead inside of Marina Ballerina and looked like a winner.
That is until My List suddenly appeared so quickly it looked as if the others were slowing down dramatically.
Eurico Da Silva never even turned his stick over as his filly zipped past One Across for the score.

"He last furlong, she finished fast, fast, fast," said Da Silva, who swept the weekend stakes races at Woodbine.

What a story MY LIST is.

Trainer Nick Gonzalez said that the filly, nicknamed Martha since he bought the filly for his wife/assistant, was not a yearling he intended to buy at the Fasig Tipton October sale in Kentucky three years ago.

Gonzalez had finished his shopping at the sale and was sitting with friends when My List came into the ring.

"My friends were making fun of her because she had these big bug-eyes and huge ears."

Gonzalez looked a little closer at the filly and her pedigree page and liked her conformation.

When bidding simply crawled for the Kentucky bred, Gonzalez big $1,200 and the hammer fell.

"I thought, why did I do that, I didn't have any room left on the trailer."

So Martha got her horse and My List showed promise in her first ever start, finishing 2nd with a strong rally.

The offers started coming in and soon, the Gonzalez's sold her to the Tucci's, who kept the filly in training with Nick.

$520,000 later, My List is a top mare in the country.

One Across, an Ontario bred by El Corredor, made her usual move to the lead too soon in the stretch and was caught, a tough loss for the Mike Ambler and partners' mare.
Street Sounds was an even third.


It is not easy picking.betting winners at Woodbine with big fields and a track that shows quite a bit of bias as the racing week goes on.

This past weekend, horses going to the lead were essentially doomed (especially yesterday) and wide rallies in the stretch was the winnning formula.

And strong winds have played havoc with the times for sure.

Yesterday, allowance gals races 6 furlongs in 1:09 1/5, two races before $12,500 claimers raced the same distance in 1:09 3/5.

Races like yesterday's 4th event were typical of the weekend.
A fast pace was set in the allowance/optional claiming 1 1/16 mile race for older guys - Touched by Madness (a graded stakes winner) and Fuhrever Dancing went 46 2/5 in a tough duel.
Iin deep stretch the entire field just about caught up and the winner was longshot TAP SHOW, Alpine Stables' 5yo gelding that it claimed from Stronach Stables.
Simon Husbands rode. The Beyer was 94.
Touched by Madness ran a miraculous race to be 2nd for KK Sangara.

Minshall Farms picked up its first win with RIDEWITHTHETIDE, a maiden filly who appeared beaten 2 strides before the wire but then put her head down to win the $15,000 claiming race. A homebred by Sea Wall, the filly was ridden by Corey Fraser.

SWEETSOUTHERN DOLL came from miles behind to win the 6th race - her 2nd win in as many starts this year. It was also the 3rd win for new owner Anne Perron, who has only had three starts with her horses.
Sweetsouthern Doll won the allowance race with a 4 wide rally under Dean Deverell.

One lone front running winner was KNIGHTLY ATTIRE, the Hat Tricl/Double Eagle Stables gelding who had a drab season debut at an abbreviated distance but then got away with a :24.00 opening quarter in a sprint yesterday and he coasted home.
The Ascot Knight chestnut is trained by Ian Black.

LUCAS STREET has stakes potential. The 4yo Ontario bred by Silver Deputy-Ruby Park, Bold Ruckus romped in race 9 with an 87 Beyer Figure.
She rallied wide to grab the speed (56 4/5 for 5 furlongs).
In that race, Stronach Stables claimed Bev Buck's mare LA SALLE GLORY for $62,500.

The Stronach team were then in the winner's circle after the next race when PERFECT BULLET made as successful transition from turf to Polytrack and came from nowhere to win his maiden at 1 1/16 miles in 1:43, an 85 Beyer Figure.

He is a son of champion mare Perfect Sting.

Queen's Plate hopefuls SILVER JAG (2nd), D.FLUTIE (4th), HARVEST HOME (unplaced) were only mild threats.


The Day at the Races


Trainer Todd Pletcher can't confirm if Harlem Rocker will start in Saturday's Preakness Stakes until he talks to owner Frank Stronach.

But if the decision were up to the 40-year-old trainer, Harlem Rocker would be in the starting gate against Derby winner Big Brown, Pletcher said after watching the colt work five furlongs in 1:00.10 Sunday morning over Belmont's training track.

"I thought the horse worked extremely well," Pletcher said. "His work this morning was very, very good. I'm going to recommend to the Stronachs that he runs. Obviously it's their decision."

Pletcher hopes to talk Monday to Stronach, who is in Austria.

If Harlem Rocker enters the Preakness, he clearly will be the second choice in the wagering. If not, Pletcher's Behindatthebar probably will be the second choice off his win in the Lexington Stakes.

"Sometimes you've got to strike while the iron is hot," Pletcher said of Harlem Rocker, who rolled home a 2-1/2-length winner in last month's Withers Stakes at Aqueduct.

Behindatthebar worked with Harlem Rocker and was clocked in 1:00.13.

"It was the first time he worked on regular dirt and he handled it very well," Pletcher said of Behindatthebar's move.

Pletcher is seeking his first Preakness winner; he is 0-for-3, running third in 2000 with Impeachment as his best finish. Last year he sent out Circular Quay and King of the Roxy to fifth- and sixth- place finishes, respectively.

His Derby record fell to 0-for-21 after Cowboy Cal and Monba finished ninth and 20th, respectively, behind Big Brown, who just jogged a mile yesterday at Churchill over the main track that was labeled muddy.

The Derby winner is scheduled to ship to Baltimore on Wednesday, when the field will be drawn.

A field of 13 is expected, one less than the maximum amount allowed.


Canadian stallion TEJANO RUN was represented by another new stakes winner yesterday when MILLION DOLLAR RUN won the Grade 3 Railbird Stakes yesterday at Hollywood Park as a maiden in just her 2nd career start.
The Everest Stables homebred raced 7 furlongs in 1:20.66.

D'WILD AFFAIR won an allowance race at Monmouth,his 2nd career score in 7 races for the Silly Goose Stable, The D'Wildcat-Forbidden Love, Mt Livermore gelding ran 6 furlongs in 1:09.02, won by 8 lengths and posted an 88 Beyer Figure.
The gelding was bred by Reade Baker in Ontario.

The May 1 payment has come and gone and 57 horses remain eligible for the Plate.
Just 4 are fillies.
HARLEM ROCKER and COOL GATOR are the top contenders.

2008 Queen's Plate Stakes - Eligibles through May 1, 2008. Horse Name Ag-S-St Owner's Name Dam (Sire)
Armored 3-C Woodford Racing LLC Arm Charm (Malibu Moon)

Awake By Noon 3-C Bruno Schickedanz Keen Haley (Wake At Noon)

Bold Suspect 3-G The Usual Suspects Racing Stable Lady D'Jour (Bold Executive)

Cappal Mor 3-G Barry Smith and Edward Skrzypek Scarab Bracelet (Not Impossible)

Carina Bay 3-C Augustin Stable Ruby Mist (Silver Deputy)

Chasin the Tornado 3-C Jack and Coke Stables and Barbara MinsI Beat The Tornado (Smart Strike)

Chauvinist 3-C Augustin Stable Bristol Pistol (Cozzene)

Cheers Mate 3-C G.Schickedanz Ring Of Flowers (Langfuhr)

Compadre Moon 3-G Molinaro Stable Moonland Princess (Compadre)

Compadre Strikes 3-C H. W. Chambers Vices N Tabacos (Compadre)

Cool Gator 3-C Hillsbrook Farms Its A Ruby (Macho Uno)

D. Flutie 3-C G.Schickedanz Forest Flute (Langfuhr)

Dancingall Theway 3-G K. K. Sangara Roses At Sunset (A Fleets Dancer)

Deputiformer 3-C David James Barney's Mistress (Silver Deputy)

Dylan's Choice 3-C Winter Road Racing Corp. Grooms Derby (Sligo Bay)

East End Tap 3-C Sheik Yobuti Racing Stable Inc. East End Lady (Pleasant Tap)

Fionn 3-C Eaton Hall Farm Vacuna (Mizzen Mast)

Giquere 3-C Mario Forgione Misty Halo (Mutakddim)

Gloriously 3-F Woodford Racing LLC Glory's Story (Indian Charlie)

Go in Peace 3-G Silver Duck Racing Stable Host Of Royalty (Northern Strike)

Grazettes Landing 3-C Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Grazettes (Paynes Bay)

Handsome Blue 3-C Stronach Stables Inc. Class (Touch Gold)

Harlem Rocker 3-C Stronach Stables Inc. Freedom Come (Macho Uno)

Harvest Home 3-C Sam-Son Farm Quiet Cheer (Smart Strike)

Iron City 3-C D.M. Firestone Flying Stuka (Forest Camp)

Jungle Brew 3-C Stronach Stables Inc. Love Medicine (Milwaukee Brew)

Kesagami 3-C Jim Dandy Stable Gleaming Glory (Carson City)

Lincoln Fortyniner 3-C J.M.Stritzl Stable Crown Wisdom (Compadre)

Mamma's Knight 3-G M. S. Kowalski Bob's Choice (Ascot Knight)

Marlang 3-C G.Schickedanz Marienburg (Langfuhr)

McNamara 3-G Oxbridge Farm Valhalla Vixen (Mizzen Mast)

Naval Strike 3-C Woodford Racing LLC Now Dance (Smart Strike)

Niagara Thunder 3-C Centennial Farms (Niagara) Terrigal (Hussonet)

Nor'easterner 3-C Mark Reid Jr. One More Breeze (Fusaichi Pegasus)

Not Bourbon 3-C Charles E.Fipke Bourbon Belle (Not Impossible)

One Adam Twelve 3-C Richard Lederman Racing Stables Inc. Current Show (Trajectory)

Orbison 3-C Chiefswood Stables Ltd. Dance To Reason (Aptitude)

Palmers 3-C Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Edey's Village (Grand Slam)

Pewter 3-G William Clifton Jr. Penny Perfect (Silver Deputy)

Pronger 3-G Mario Forgione Our Lady's Wish (Stormin Fever)

Red And Bold 3-G Molinaro Stable Healing Knowledge (Bold Executive)

Scotzanna's Champ 3-C Bruno Schickedanz Scotzanna (Solomon's Decree)

Sebastian's Song 3-C Centennial Farms (Niagara) Noble Strike (Cherokee Run)

Shadowless 3-G Heather Takahashi Life In Fiction (Stormy Atlantic)

Silver Jag 3-G Earl W. Daynes Lochlin (Point Given)

Silver Sands 3-F Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Cherry Tree Hill (El Prado)

Solitaire 3-G William Clifton Jr. Ring Star (Victory Gallop)

Stormy Cruise 3-C William Sorokolit Cruising Kris (Johannesburg)

Stuck in Traffic 3-C M.A.D. Racing Stable and M.Gonzalez Deadlock (Kiridashi)

Sugar Bay 3-F Augustin Stable Otra Vez (Syncline)

Sun Hawk 3-C Park Lane Stable Maytime (Mutakddim)

Tacito 3-C Centennial Farms (Niagara) Barlee Mist (Trajectory)

Tiger Fling 3-F Augustin Stable Meaningful Fling (Hold That Tiger)

Took the Time 3-G Earle I. Mack Smart Zone (Greenwoodlake)

Whiskey Again 3-C H. W. Chambers Indeed I Do (Whiskey Wisdom)

Yamana 3-C H. W. Chambers So Say All of Us (Tethra)

Zarroc 3-C G.Schickedanz Dance Diane (Langfuhr)


Only 45 fillies are eligible for the Oaks now - 32 different owners.
GINGER BREW is the top contender, SHILLA could be headed straight into the Oaks without racing in the Selene Stakes.
MAREN'S MEADOW, trained by Larry Jones, was supplemented.

2008 Woodbine Oaks - Eligibles through May 1, 2008 Horse Name Ag-S-St Owner's Name Dam (Sire)

A Knights Heart 3-F Molinaro Stable Easy Gain (Ascot Knight)

Anne's Purse 3-F Big C, Little C Stable Blue Spanish Eyes (Porto Foricos)

Arrow in Flight 3-F Sam-Son Farm Split The Arrow (Forest Wildcat)

Authenicat 3-F Vinery LLC Authentic Deed (D'Wildcat)

Bahia Girl 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. Kadie's Quest (Sligo Bay)

Black Bikini 3-F M. and N.Nosowenko Ascot Affair (Whiskey Wisdom)

Broadway Lights 3-F Theodore F. Burnett Simple Surprise (Bold Executive)

Call the Posse 3-F Vinery LLC Bacall (Posse)

Christie Village 3-F Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Felicita (Deputy Minister)

Cobbler's Reef 3-F Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Kingsland (A.P. Indy)

Critical Path 3-F Hendrie Stable Hippicritical (Trajectory)

Escarpment 3-F Windhaven Heart Lake (Grand Slam)

Exit Victorious 3-F John Sikura and Edward McGhee Existentialist (Vindication)

Ginger Brew 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. Coral Necklace (Milwaukee Brew)

Gloriously 3-F Woodford Racing LLC Glory's Story (Indian Charlie)

Halloween Witch 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. Debt (Golden Missile)

Happy Cat 3-F W. Werner and Windhaven Smart Angel (Forest Wildcat)

Hello Maggie May 3-F Windhaven Fantasy Lake (Lemon Drop Kid)

Honour Fulfilled 3-F C. Scott Abbott Racing Stable Ltd. Fulfilled Promise (Honor And Glory)

Impossible Time 3-F Charles E.Fipke Classiest Carat (Not Impossible)

Initforreal 3-F D. Rowbotham, D.Lindskog, H.MacKinnoFavored One (Real Quiet)

Isa Dixie 3-F D. Andrews and B. and R. Giffin Isabeau (Dixieland Band)

Jammo Jammo 3-F South of Nine Farm Theatrical Rose (Storm Creek)

Jovial Jill 3-F P.De Wit and B.Cowan Jovial Blast (Bold Executive)

Labota 3-F R.F. and J.E. Shaw Affirmooloo (Storm Boot)

Lady d'Wildcat 3-F Shyman Farms Avenue's Lady (D'Wildcat)

Maren's Meadow * 3-F River Ridge Ranch Gold Liaka (Meadowlake)

Money My Honey 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. Collect The Cash (Red Bullet)

Nicki Knew 3-F Knob Hill Stable Panteccaria (Tethra)

Night Fever 3-F D.M. Firestone Tea N' Thing (Perigee Moon)

Nite in Rome 3-F W. S. Farish Ascot Wedding (Harland's Holiday)

Northern Kraze 3-F Anderson Farms Ontario Inc. and M. FroBaraha (Aljabr)

Roses 'N' Wine 3-F D.M. Firestone Regent's Fancy (Broken Vow)

Saffron Rose 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. Erinyes (Golden Missile)

Salomea 3-F Lynne Hindmarsh Roaring Twenties (Milwaukee Brew)

Satin Slippers 3-F Woodford Racing LLC Matilda Dancer (E. Dubai)

Sheraton Park 3-F Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Queen's Park (Cozzene)

Shilla 3-F Victura Farm Papoose (Marquetry)

Silver Sands 3-F Melnyk Racing Stables Inc. Cherry Tree Hill (El Prado)

Skipping Queen 3-F Stronach Stables Inc. American Skipper (Touch Gold)

Sugar Bay 3-F Augustin Stable Otra Vez (Syncline)

Tapenade 3-F G.Schickedanz Oliva (Smart Strike)

Tiger Fling 3-F Augustin Stable Meaningful Fling (Hold That Tiger)

Victory Romance 3-F Donver Stable Moonbeam Dancing (Slew City Slew)

Wind in My Wings 3-F Craig B. Singer Sly Butterfly (Sligo Bay)

* denotes supplemented


Kentucky Bear's trainer confident going into Preakness Baker looking for his colt to challenge Big Brown
By Sandra McKee | Sun reporter 6:46 PM EDT, May 11, 2008

Trainer Reade Baker looked around the Pimlico Stakes barn Saturday morning. What he saw was the rain pounding on the roof and, aside from his Preakness entry Kentucky Bear, a lot of empty stalls.

"I'm from the old school,'' Baker said. "I've been in this a long time, and I've always thought you take a good horse to a big race early.

"I want my horse here. I want to take him to the track and breeze him and see how he likes it. I want to take him to the paddock and school him in the gate. I want to do everything I can to make him as familiar and comfortable on race day as I can. That's what great horsemen did. I guess these modern guys have different ways of doing things.''

Baker grew up on a dairy farm, but his uncle took him to the racetrack when he was 14 and within 10 minutes, Baker said, he was sold.

"I never wanted to be a trainer,'' he said. "I really just wanted to work around the track. The job I liked best was being a jockey's agent, but I got stuck training.''

Baker didn't look like he was joking. He was working as racing manager for Rick Kennedy and in 1990, when Kennedy was phasing out his stable, Baker began training the few horses he still had. Then he opened his own stable and this week he is running Kentucky Bear in the Preakness.

It is his first Triple Crown race, but don't expect Baker to voice being thrilled about achieving a dream.

"It's what I do for a living,'' he said. "A horseman's dream is to retire. It will help my business. The owner will be happy.''

The owner, Danny Dion, is president of Bear Slashing Ltd., an oil exploration and mulching business that operates in Western Canada.

"He goes up in the oil patch in northern Alberta and makes roads in the winter time,'' Baker said. "He's probably the only owner in the race doing something like that. He's a tough guy.''

The first thing Dion said to Baker when they met, was, "Hi, I'm Danny Dion. I want you to train some horses. I want to win the Kentucky Derby.''

Kentucky Bear, a son of Mr. Greeley and a surprise buy for $40,000 at Keeneland, was their best opportunity so far, but Kentucky Bear's third-place finish in the Blue Grass Stakes left them on the outside looking in at the Derby.

So now it is on to the Preakness, and Baker's faith in his horse has not been shaken.

"It's plain and simple what our goal was, and if he had gotten in, he might have won it,'' Baker said. "I didn't think we'd be able to buy this horse in the first place. He was a big, grand-looking horse. There was a lot of interest in him. But he got loose the night before the sale and ran through some fences at Keeneland and scraped himself all up. Other people lost interest, but we took a shot. Thank God.''

Baker pointed out his colt has run well on dirt, winning his maiden at Gulfstream, and on synthetics, third in the Blue Grass at Keeneland.

"He showed me he could run right away,'' Baker said. "Good ones usually do. You can't tell the very first day, but by the time you get him up to -- and he's going faster than anyone in the barn and doing it easier than anyone in the barn -- if you didn't know, you better get another job.''

Baker, 61, said his horse has a good chance to win Saturday. He isn't put off by the presence of Big Brown, the Kentucky Derby winner, who dominated all the boys in the May 3 Derby, with only the late filly Eight Belles anywhere close, 4 3/4 lengths back in second.

He told everyone on a conference call last week that it was too early to put Big Brown in the Hall of Fame. And this weekend, he wasn't backing off the statement.

"They told me you couldn't beat War Pass in January. He was the best horse alive. Then the end of February we switched to Pyro,'' Baker said. "Now we've switched to Big Brown. To say a horse is a really good horse, unless he blows the opposition away repeatedly like Secretariat, is to see how he comes back and runs against Curlin [2007 Preakness winner and Horse of the Year] in the fall. That will tell you.''

So Baker is here to give his horse a chance.

"Oh, I'm worried,'' Baker said. "I worry about everything. Worry is what I do. But I believe in my horse. Why? Because he is talented and he's fast.''


Summit on Thoroughbred Racing Safety On May 13th at Woodbine


  • At 1:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    On an unrelated topic, I wonder if the powers that be are at all pleased with their decision to put the new standardbred paddock between the tracks now that they see what a disastrous effect it has on the landscape???????

    Never will we be able to watch a long turf race or dirt races out of the chute live without the aid of TV's as the vista is completely obscured by the new many times has EP Taylor rolled over now?!?!?!?!?!

  • At 7:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Right on Anon 1:15.
    Another point is that some trainers and/or jockeys were using the chute to warm-up their horses away from observation by the casual fan. Only those with binoculars were spotting those. Now,these "hidden" warm-ups will proliferate, so be prepared for bizarre form reversals.

    Bettors, protect yourselves and start keeping a list of such trainers/jockeys. (I did for 2007, and caught several surprise winners).

  • At 11:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yeah, I know what you mean. I went to Woodbine this past weekend for the first time since last fall and I was pretty surprised to see where they had placed the standardbred barn. That will suck for viewing races like the International.

  • At 12:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    To believe that Trainers or Jockey's had previously used the chute to hide horses from the public for warm ups prior to racing is ridiculous. Horse's warm up in the chute cause the riders are able to control them easier then having them run off on the track itself. Your results from 2007 are simply because horses that have a good warm up generally run better. Watch Ramsammy warm his horses up before a race


Post a Comment