ascot aug08
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Wednesday, July 02, 2008


OH CANADA!! ......and oh what a strange race the DOMINION DAY WAS...
STERWINS scratched as he was showing signs of an injury, the race was down to 4 horses and favoured TRUE METROPOLITAN got mad (see him strating to throw his head?) JIGGS COZ went gate-to-wire (Cindy Pierson-Dulay photo)



Fort Erie's big race and the 2nd jewel of the CANADIAN TRIPLE CROWN, the PRINCE OF WALES STAKES, will be held on July 13 and it looks as if NOT BOURBON is going to have quite a few challengers.

Thoroughblog has learned that HARLEM ROCKER will take another shot at the local 3yo's and come from New York for the 'Wales. The Todd Pletcher trainee passed on the Plate since he did not thrive on Polytrack (he bombed in the Plate Trial) but Fort Erie has a traditional dirt track.

Harlem Rocker was also being considered for the Dwyer Stakes at Belmont.

Not Bourbon, the Plate winner, heads this group in the 1 3/16 mile 'Wales':




Was there a full mooon yesterday? Strange day at the races with dead heats and many inquiries and then a goofy 4 horse race in the $200,000 Dominion Day that ended the long weekend with a fizzle.

Certainly the front running victory by Mel Lawson's JIGGS COZ was surprising to say the least.
The talk of the race was double champion TRUE METROPOLITAN's fight with his rider Jim McAleney ("Under severe restraint") says the chart.
Perhaps McAleney was riding to some sort of instructions but he had a devil of a time wrangled back his mount off the pace.
That was bad news though, as Jiggs Coz (Cozzene-Young Brodie, Broad Brush) went :50 seconds and change to the half mile pole and the race was over.

"We talked to David (Clark, jockey) and he said this horse prefers Polytrack to the grass," said trainer Sid Attard. "We thought the one horse (True Metropolitan) was going to go to the lead, but he showed speed nice and easy. When I saw the 50 (half-mile mark), I was very happy."

The Dominion Day was the colt's fifth career victory and fourth Woodbine stakes tally. In 2006, Jiggs Coz won the Display, before taking two added-money scores in his three-year-old campaign: the Queenston and Plate Trial.

"He came up with some problems," offered Attard. "I'm not making excuses. We were very disappointed we didn't win the Plate, but what are you going to do? I wish he was as good in the Plate as he was today."

The wacky stuff on the card began in race 2 when Lemon Twirl (Lemon Drop Kid) and Reverently (Pulpit) dead heated for the win in the maiden allowance at 1 mile on the grass.
Both gals were far behind the hot pace, both gals had traffic trouble as the front runner stopped and backed up horses and both of their riders were jerking, pulling and throwing reins in the frantic stretch battle.
Lemon Twirl was the big fave and paid $2.40 while 12 to 1 shot Reverently paid only $7.70 to win.

In race 3, the stewards had to examine a couple of incidents in the stretch run of the Ontario sired allowance race for fillies and mares.
The winner, SHEBA, led all the way for trainer Jim Ensom and jockey Jim McAleney and was not involved in the madness.
But 2nd place finisher Natural Mystic came in through the stretch, rubbed out Box Office Launch who checked hard and 3rd place finisher Silver Beacon came out off the turn and caused Inglewood drive to steady.
Natural Mystic and Silver Beacon were both disqualified (Jono Jones and Sunny Singh).
Meanwhile, even-money favourite Halloween Witch was lethargic for Stronach Stables and was placed 3rd.
SHEBA (Foxtrail) is a 5yo mare bred by Silver Willow Farm. She was claimed for $32,000 last fall by Gary Aimonetti from John Charalambous then claimed by Ensom for $16,000 on June 4.

In race 8, Jono Jones again had trouble when DELI LAMA came out and bothered a rival on her way to a 2nd place finish in the maiden allowance on the grass. The Langfuhr filly was disqualified and placed 3rd.
The winner, NORTHERN KRAZE, came out of the Woodbine Oaks and was returning to her best distance and surface. She is a daughter of Aljabr who is owned by Mark Frostad and Anderson Farms.

YAHOO - Jocky Chantal Sutherland won 4 races yesterday and the jet black mare EXECUTIVE FLIGHT won her first stakes and went over $500,000 in earnings. Trainer Darwin Banach (left) and Bill Sorokolit Jr, the owner, head to the infield. (Cindy Pierson Dulay photo)


BEARS TIGER was the lone speed in race 1 'on paper' and in the race! He paid a nice $10 plus as a galloping winner in the allowance race for non-winners of 1 'other than'.
he is by Hold That Tiger and is a Kentucky bred owned by Bear Stables and trained by Reade Baker.

Bill Sorokolit Jr.'s EXECUTIVE FLIGHT won the Sweet Briar Too Stakes with a strong rally under jockey Chantal Sutherland, who won 4 races on the card.
The Bold Executive filly was winning a stakes for the first time in her 2nd race of the year. The mare has won 8 of 25 races and surged over $500,000 in earnings. She is a homebred out of Harvest the Sky by Skywalker.

GABRIELLE'S CHARM made it official. The Eltish 4yo won a maiden race last year but was disqualified. She won for $19,000 yesterday by a head for Rousseau Racing and Mike Silvera.

CLASSIC MORGEY did the bounce-back thing in race 6 for $19,000. The Regal Classic 4yo, Ontario bred won his season debut with a 73 Beyer in a $19K claimer, trained for $37,500 in a turf race and then won again eysterday by a lip for Sue Leslie, owner/trainer (with Glen Morgan).

GRACELICIOUS won with 1st time Lasix in an allowance race on turf in race 9. The Randy Regent-Casual Glance filly, bred by Curraghmore Farm and owned by Formal Racing, was 6th in her grass debut but turned things around in a big way yesterday. She is trained by Debbie England, who was gettin gher 5th win of the season.

The finale was won by class dropping PAULIFF'S PRIDE (Tethra), who was in good form for her first three races of the season but then was 9th beaten 12 3/4 last time at 6 to 1. It was tough to force her form reversal yesterday but she won for $12,500 for Paul Buttigieg.


Discussion involves possible tax break for Woodbine Live! project

Woodbine Entertainment vice president of corporate affairs JANE HOLMES was on the Bill Carroll show this morning on CFRB radio to discuss the TORONTO STAR story yesterday about Woodbine asking for a tax break for its WOODBINE LIVE! project that is due to start construction around year's end.
(the Star story was on yesterday's THOROUGHBLOG post)

"We're putting so many public ammenities in the project, such as the four-block water feature (fountains etc. that will be a skating rink in the winter), free concerts and other park areas that are free for the public," said Holmes. "That's what is going to make the develop unique but it is also unaffordable in a regular development."

But Holmes emphasized that Woodbine is not asking for "money up front" but a "delay in taxes" over a 20 year period.

Holmes said the Woodbine Live! project will create 4,700 jobs during its construction stage and 9,400 jobs once the project is up and running with bars, clubs etc.
"Woodbine is a strong community partner, we are proud that we donate to various charitable organizations and we want to strengthen our partnership with community of Etobicoke."


CURLIN had a workout on the grass of 1:31 and change as he rallied past a stablemate. He is heading to France in the fall for the Arc.

BIG BROWN worked in 106 and change for 5 furlongs and galloped our six furlongs in 1:21 and change (some reports said he galloped out 7 furlongs in 1:21!)

BLOGGERS ALLIANCE has right idea with its Standings

Horse-racing to award £2m prize

By Roger Blitz, Leisure Industries Correspondent

FROM FT.COM (Financial Times)

Horse-racing is offering owners and trainers a £2m prize for the champion horse of the flat racing season in an attempt to revive interest in the Derby and other elite races.

The prize is part of a £10m pot Ascot, Epsom, Newmarket and other leading racecourses are putting up for 10 of the leading flat races of the season, known as Group 1 races.

In 2010, the races will be renamed the Sovereign Series, and points will be awarded according to each horse’s place in each race. By giving £2m to the highest-ranked horse over the season, the racecourses hope to widen the appeal of the sport and increase the value of broadcasting and commercial rights.

An extra £3m will go toward marketing the series and establishing it on the sporting calendar alongside the likes of Wimbledon and the US Open.

Tennis and golf officials have embraced similar strategies, revamping their tour calendars and increasing prize money after a plethora of tournaments appeared to confuse the public.

The move is being driven by Simon Bazalgette, the executive chairman of Racing UK, the racing channel owned by 30 racecourses.

“At the grassroots level, there is nothing significantly wrong with flat racing, but the broader sports audience can’t understand why one horse is better than another,” said Bazalgette, also the chief executive designate of the Jockey Club. His remit is to bring a dose of commercialism and modernisation to the horse-racing institution, whose assets include 14 racecourses.


and she's "truly angered"

(from SIDELINES blog)

JOHN CLAY reprints an email he received from MAGGI MOSS, horse owner and attorney for STEVE ASMUSSEN about a column he wrote about drugs, racing and who should be suspended..

Here is her email:

Dear Mr. Clay,

I was just forwarded your blog on Dutrow and my client, Steve Asmussen. I am not familiar with Dutrow's case but am very familiar with Steve's case for I am his attorney, I know him , and I know the circumstances of his case.

I am also all too aware of real horrors in this business of horse racing and I have to beg to differ with you.
Until we have a uniform system of no drugs or any uniformity, do you really want someone ruled off that might be innocent or have a case of contamination. Is that the United States we want to live in?

If there is something to write about racing as it exists today, I would hope all of us would come together to try and deal with the realities and truly grave horrors;

1. We are still breeding so many horses that we still have racehorses going in inhumane trucks to be taken to Mexico and Canada slaughterhouses and having their spines cut with knifes, some of which don't die right away.



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