CHERRY ON TOP
DON CHERRY, ROGER ATTFIELD and his PROTEGE'S - Roger Attfield, who trains the Plate fave Not Bourbon, is between two of his former assistants, DAVID BELL (left) and MIKE KEOGH (right) both who have horses in the Plate as well (Shadowless and D. Flutie). DON CHERRY holds the Plate trophy.
UPDATE... QUEEN'S PLATE POST POSITIONS!
"THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH TWO BREWS, BUT ITS NOT BOURBON"
- Roger Attfield at today's post position draw.
THE FIELD - SUNDAY JUNE 22, $1 MILLION
1 D. Flutie/Gus Schickedanz/Mike Keogh/Emile Ramsammy 30-1
*Named after the famous Canadian/NFL quarterback Doug Flutie, long and strong D Flutie is rough and tough and races a lot like his daddy Langfuhr with a low head carriage. He is still a maiden, his uncle Woodcarver won the Plate.
2 Dylan's Choice/Winter Road Racing Corporation/Desmond Maynard/Chantal Sutherland 50-1
Won his maiden for $8,000 claiming in Florida in the winter.
3 East End Tap/Sheik Yobuti Racing Stable Inc./Reade Baker/Tyler Pizarro 30-1
*Arguably the best looking horse in the race and getting nibbles here and there. He is a winner.
4 Harvest Home/Sam-Son Farm/Mark Frostad/Corey Fraser 30-1
*Legendary Sam-Son Farms sends out a maiden who will find his niche on grass.
5 Deputiformer/David James/Mike DePaulo/Jerry Baird 30-1
*He won a big race at 2, the Cup & Saucer, on the grass, but has been dull on Polytrack this year. His recent workouts have been strong.
6 Silver Jag/Earl Daynes/Josie Carroll/Slade Callaghan 30-1
*He's a maiden who has shown some promise. Trainer won the Plate 2 years ago.
7 Palmers/Melynk Racing Stables Inc./Mark Casse/Patrick Husbands 15-1
*Does not like Polytrack much according to his trainer but has run well enough on it. He's a winner.
8 Mamma's Knight/Mike Kowalski/Sam DiPasquale/Justin Stein 50-1
*Big winner on a Wednesday night over Ontario sired rivals and a horse for the little guys.
9 Shadowless/Heather Takahashi/David Bell/Emma-Jayne Wilson 20-1
*Only horse owned by Takahashi is big and strong and improving.
10 Ginger Brew/Stronach Stables/Brian Lynch/Javier Castellano 4-1
*Soft and gentle filly won the WOODBINE OAKS like a monster. Has to come back in 2 weeks for the Plate.
11 Jungle Brew/Stronach Stables/Brian Lynch/Eibar Coa 8-1
*Stablemate of Ginger Brew, he's a maiden who has shown promise.
12 Solitaire/William Clifton/James Bond/Robert Landry 7-2
*Maiden almost won the Plate Trial in his first Woodbine start and 2nd lifetime start.
13 Not Bourbon/Charles Fipke/Roger Attfield/Jono Jones 3-1
*Plate fave is peaking at the right time. Last Plate Trial winner to also take the Plate was Alydeed in 1992.
14 Sebastian's Song/Centennial Farms (Niagara) Inc./Alec Fehr/David Clark 12-1
Placed in the Trial and coming up to a good race for a group of new owners from Niagara Falls.
15 Took the Time/Earle I. Mack/Mark Casse/Ramon Dominguez 15-1
*One of 2 in the race for Casse. Improving youngster is very fresh and is a winner.
A packed trackside tent watched the post position selection process today at WOODBINE but not before DON CHERRY, former hockey coach and of the CBC's HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA wowed the crowd with funny stories and jokes.
Cherry told stories about Gerry Cheevers when he goaltended for Boston (which Cherry coached) and Cheever's top horse at the time, ROYAL SKI.
He bantered with DAN LOISELLE and the crowd and received many laughs and applause.
Cherry assisted with the selection process (SILVER JAG got 1st pick, TOOK THE TIME, 15TH pick) and then had photos taken with trainers and riders.
The post draw does not seem to have much bearing on the race since there is a 2 furlong run to the 1st turn. The horses will loade in post position order and there will be 14 horses in the main gate and one horse (TOOK THE TIME) in the AUXILLIARY GATE.
"He's trained as good as any horse in the barn," said Brian Lynch about the maiden JUNGLE BREW. Lynch also has the filly GINGER BREW in the race, the Oaks winner who will be supplemented for $25,000.
"I've had top horses like WILL'S WAY, BEHRENS, BUDDHA, they didn't race at 2," said James Bond, who trains 2nd favourite SOLITAIRE, who has only raced twice. "I like to be patient and take my time."
"It has been 10 years since Archers Bay won the Plate for Mr. Melnyk, so we thought we would take that post," said trainer Mark Casse about taking post 7 for PALMERS.
"Give yourself plenty of time to come out because there will be delays," said WOODBINE chair DAVID WILLMOT about the CAW picketers on Sunday who plan to set up at 9 a.m. at the Woodbine entrances. The security guards for the OLG Casino are striking and the bad news is, horsepeople are going to pay.
"It's a wide open field and he has shown us ability," said EARL DAYNES about his colt SILVER JAG, one of 5 maidens in the race.
WOODBINE AND LONGRUN TEAM UP ON PLATE DAY
Woodbine Entertainment and LongRun will combine for a unique fundraiser on Plate day.
Each horse in the Plate, 15 of them, will have a customized saddlecloth that will be autographed and then put up for auction on ebay from Jun 23-June 30 with all proceeds going to LongRun.
There are minimum bids - $2,500 for the winner, $1,000 for the runner-up, $500 for the 3rd horse and $250 for the others.
DON CHERRY, Canadian icon, is the guest at Woodbine today for the draw for posts for the QUEEN'S PLATE (photo from cbc.ca). His co-hort RON MCLEAN hosts the Plate show on CBC on Sunday...
QUEEN'S PLATE POST POSITION DRAW TODAY!
The Queen's Plate contenders have put their finishing touches on their big training as we are 4 days away from the big event, the 149th edition of Canda's most famous race.
NOT BOURBON, who could go off as the favourite over maiden SOLITAIRE and Oaks winner GINGER BREW, looked like a champion in his 46 and change breeze for half a mile yesterday under Jono Jones and appears as ready as he will ever be.
The Not Impossible 3yo, out of millionaire Bourbon Belle, won the Plate Trial and his trainer ROGER ATTFIELD was the last conditioner to get a horse to win the Trial and Plate - he did it in 1992 with ALYDEED.
SOLITAIRE arrived in his van from New York yesterday at noon and trainer James Bond is also in town. The colt has raced just twice but was a closing 2nd in the Trial under veteran rider Rob Landry.
Solitaire and JUNGLE BREW are maidens with only 2 career starts. The ONLY horse in modern times to win the Plate off just 2 starts is Awesome Again, and he went on to win the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Landry will be among many Queen's Plate players as guests at the Woodbine early Morning workouts seminar at 8:30 (A CORRECTION) Saturday morning at the trackside tent.
EAST END TAP, owned by Sheihk Yobuti Stable and trained by Reade Baker, will have blinkers off for the Plate.
Stay tuned after the draw for more updates plus the post positions.
GET READY....PICKETERS BIG ON SUNDAY...
CAW to Host Barbeque at Queen's Plate - Woodbine Racetrack Sunday
The CAW will be hosting a picket line barbeque at the Woodbine Racetrack on Sunday in honour of the Queen's Plate race and
the three-week long strike against concessions and the erosion of full time
jobs at the Ontario Lottery and Gaming facility.
The prestigious annual one-day event normally grosses tens of millions of
dollars for OLG and brings together approximately 20,000 fans from across the
Nearly 100 CAW local leadership and staff people met this morning to plan
the picket line support for Sunday's event.
"This is a time to work towards having decent full-time jobs and not
demand a larger compliment of part-timers, especially in Ontario where
manufacturing jobs are being eroded daily," said Hemi Mitic, assistant to CAW
President Buzz Hargrove.
The union warns that the barbeque may cause a slight delay in entering
the grounds and advises patrons to park nearby and walk to the racetrack.
The barbeque will begin at 9 a.m. and continue for the rest of the day,
with hundreds of CAW members, labour activists and community allies attending
from across southern Ontario.
Since setting up the peaceful picket lines, CAW members have been subject
to assault, been hit by motorized vehicles, spit on and verbally abused by
CAW members are also on strike in two other OLG locations including
Brantford and Sudbury Casinos since June 1 when OLG refused to respond to
concerns around shrinking full time employment, discrimination against
unionized workers, maternity leave, wages and benefits.
The striking Woodbine Racetrack workers are employed as security officers
at the facility.
PLATE CONTENDERS horse-owner-trainer-jock notes
THIS IS HOW IT IS... WOODBINE WEDNESDAY NIGHT
The RICHARD LISTER roll continued as the owner and breeder scored yet another stakes win for 2008 (combining with added-money scores by Danceroftherealm) when TELL IT AS IT IS, trained by Jim Smith, stormed down the grass course to win the Tattling Stakes, a $100,000 event for older mares on the grass at 1 1/16 miles.
It was the first stakes win for the Kentucky bred, who is out of a mare, Talltalelady, who raced for Lister years ago and was graded stakes placed. talltalelady is a half-sister to MR. GREELEY.
"I bought this gal, the second last foal of Talltalelady and I tried to buy the mare who she had passed away," said Lister. "I have to give Jim Smith a lot of credit, he believed in this filly."
TELL IT AS IT IS was reunited with her favourite rider, Emma-Jayne Wilson who rode the gal to consecutive wins on grass last year at 10 furlongs, once on yielding turf.
Yesterday, the grass was a bit on the giving side, although not as soft as one may have thought with all the rain.
A 4yo by Chester House, Tell It As It Is was a dull 10th in her season debut in the Nassau Stakes behind many that she beat yesterday.
Chester House is also the sire of SANS SOUCI ISLAND who finished 2nd for Windhaven and trainer Roger Attfield. The 4yo rallied down the middle of the course behind Tell It As It Is. She was bred in Ontario by Windhaven and Bill Werner.
Charity Quest was third for Stonerside Stable.
Favourites GLITTER ROX, RUSSIAN ROSIE and NOTTAWASAGA all flopped and finished well back.
EOLOS may be a good one. The Whiskey Wisdom colt, owned and bred by Andreas Pitsaiotis and trained by Debbie England, won a maiden allowanc in the finale by a long margin. Coming from last, the 3yo colt out of the Bold Executive mare One for the Angels, blew past the field that got tired from a hot pace and won big. He was 1st time Lasix and under regular rider Rob Landry.
TERRAPLANE was the 9th winner for trainer Mike Doyle at the meeting when he won his maiden for $12,500 in race 1. The Trust N Luck 3yo was bred by Spring Farm of Dr. John Brown.
SPOT GOLD, owned by Kinghaven Farms and Harvey Clarke, won his maiden in race 2 for just $12,500. The Touch Gold-La Glitter gelding, a $170,000 yearling purchase, was bred by Adena Springs.
Race 2 was a messy event. Second-time starter ARE WE EVEN YET was under a heavy whip down the backstretch and all the way to the finish while fading badly after attending the pace.
SHUPAN dove to the rail off the turn and wiped out a tirring IT'S FOR SURE who almost fell down because of the infraction.
SALTY LANGFUHN was the FIRST CLAIM at Woodbine by Steve Asmussen and he won right back,jumping up from his near miss in his season debut for $32K to win for $40K last night in race 4.
Ridden by Jim McAleney, the Langfuhr gelding, now a 7-year-old, has won 8 of 33 races and was recently competing for Audre Cappuccitti.
"He had a set of cheater blinkers and me and he really didn't need either one of us," said McAleney on THE SCORE show.
Confusion reigned after the race as the horse was announced as claimed but assistant trainer Steve Flint informed the viewers that the horse was not (It was Rye onthe Rocks who was claimed from Scott Fairlie by Bob Cheema).
LOOKOFANEAGLE (Ontario bred by Birdonthewire) rode the rail on the pace in a battle with 2 others and then took off the in the stretch run to win the 5th race for $10,000, non-winners of 2. The 5yo was taking a huge class drop to his lowest level yet (he had been 2nd for $20,000 3 races back) and that was the winning formula orchestrated by trainer Ted Holder for the Culpepper Island Stable. Catherine O'Brien rode. KINTYRE was delayed briefly on the turn while on the rail but once he tipped out and rallied, he almost got up to win, finally settling for 2nd for Michael Van Every and trainer Mike Wright.
FAST MILLION got a shrewd ride by Matt Moore to take the lead in race 6 when no one else other than longshot Inside Executive wanted it and that worked in the 3yo's favour. Fast Million took off on the turn and held off track record setter Home for Harlan to win the allowance race.
Richard Englander owns the Millenium Wind fellow who was bred in Ontario by Box Arrow Farm. Scott Fairlie got his 14th win of the meeting and he continues to battle for the lead with Steve Asmussen. The time was a sizzling 1:09 4/5 for 6 furlongs. It was the 3rd win in 9 starts for Fast Million.
In race 7, maiden fillies and mares for $25,000 sprinted 6 furlongs and a lot of betting support went on GABRIELLE'S CHARM who had started her campaign with 2 dull efforts, last time for $30,000 when more than 6 to 1. But the race wnt to the morning line favourite TREE LO, who incredibly hung on to win after setting insane fractions of 21 4/5 and 44 2/5. The Ontario bred was getting that huge drop - maiden allowance to claiming - and she won for the estate of Allan Luxton and K. Harris. The Luxton family bred the daughter of Bold n' Flashy. Alex McPherson trains and Matt Moore won his 2nd straight race on the night on the pace.
CBC SPORTS CONTINUES HORSE RACING COVERAGE
Irwin Driedger and the lore of the Polytrack surface is discussed by Malcom Kelly on the CBC Queen's Plate site...
(It's a good site with photos and videos, only the photo of SOLITAIRE is of another horse..)