Whoosh – VENTURA blows by the boys.
Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.
FLIGHT OF VENTURA
Betting on the up and up
The grass clippings have settled and Sunday’s day of racing at Woodbine, which ended with Sunday’s 11-race card attracting a total all-sources handle of $5,027,002, up 8 percent from $4,645,014 last year, was one of the best racing days in recent years.
The handle on the Woodbine Mile itself was $1,208,562, a rise of 30 percent compared with $932,022 in 2008.
Certainly the racing is what lured people, perhaps a trackside party from Q107 didn’t hurt, and great weather was the key.
From the likes of top trainer IAN BLACK and American jocks Rafael Bejarano and Julien Leparoux talking to fans at a Sunday seminar to the minor celebrities seen in and around the turf club and trackbars all day – it was a buzzing afternoon.
SHE’S THE ONE! Garret Gomez LOVES HIS “LITTLE DEER”
YEEHAH! Ventura is a handful pre-race.
Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.
Princess Haya sneaks a win in the Canadian.
Terence Dulay photo.
CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL UP NEXT
MARSH SIDE (black and red) moves in as he takes the lead in the Northern Dancer. QUIJANO is in the yellow and CHAMPS ELYSEES is about the check.
Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.
The Northern Dancer Stakes certainly added some drama to the Sunday races as MARSH SIDE drifted in several paths through the stretch – on his way to victory, pushed QUIJANO to the rail and then cut off CHAMPS ELYSEES.
Garret Gomez on Champs Elysees said he was sure he was going to win but that Juddmonte horse always appears as if he is going to win and he has nibbled more than scored lately.
JUST AS WELL got the win – what a story he is: trainer Johnathan Sheppard bought him off George Strawbridge (the man he trains for) when Strawbridge was culling his stock. Just as Well had soundness issues.
So the CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL will be a barn burner in less than a month – OCT. 17, and yes, it’s on Saturday.
While it’s not likely to have any bearing on the Breeders’ Cup – 3 weeks to that world series ofracing, the field is going to lure some crackerjacks from overseas.
SOME OVERSEAS NEWS ON THE INTERNATIONAL:
Buccellati is on course for the Canadian International at Woodbine next month after pleasing connections on his comeback run in France.
The five-year-old was badly in need of the outing when last of four behind Spanish Moon in the Prix Foy at Longchamp on Sunday.
That was his first run since he was injured when badly hampered in the Coronation Cup at Epsom in early June.
However, he is reported to have returned from his comeback race in tremendous form.
“I’m very happy with him, he’s absolutely thrived since and he goes for the Canadian International,” said trainer Andrew Balding.
“He was definitely a bit rusty and a bit keen and got a bit tired, but he’s in good form now.”
ASK will miss the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp next month and could instead travel to Woodbine for the Group One Canadian International.
The French feature will be held on October 4 with the Canadian International due to be run on October 17.
The Patrick Fahey-owned six-year-old gained a first Group One victory when narrowly denying Youmzain in the Investec Coronation Cup at Epsom in June.
He then ran a third at his last appearance behind stablemate’s Conduit and Tartan Bearer in a remarkable trifecta for trainer Sir Michael Stoute in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot in July.
JUKEBOX JURY looks set to travel to Toronto to bid for a first top-flight success in the Canadian International at Woodbine on October 17.
Mark Johnston had been considering a challenge for the Grade 1 event before the three-year-old won the Grand Prix de Deauville on August 30, and the trainer confirmed it as an intended target on Sunday.
He said: “The plan is to run Jukebox Jury in the Canadian International, and there is a possibility he will he have a run before then, as we are considering supplementing him for a race (Preis Von Europa) at Cologneon September 27.”
CASUAL CONQUEST was a sick horse when failing to fire in last weekend’s Tattersalls Millions Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown but Dermot Weld has the option of a Canadian stage next month for his Group One performer to bounce back to form.
“He had a very heavy head cold,” the Curragh trainer said yesterday.
SUPPORT THE LONGRUN GALA in the honour of horses such as
DASHING ADMIRAL, TWISTED WIT, ETC.
Stakes winner DASHING ADMIRAL lost for $5,000 claiming yesterday at Fort Erie.
10-year-old COOL SELECTION, an Ontario bred who has won $673,000, was 2nd for $4,000 claiming last night at Remington Park.
TWISTED WIT, a stakes winner and almost millionaire, was 5th and lugging out for $12,500 claiming at Monmo9uth Park last week.
The LONGRUN GALA is Friday night at Woodbine and proceeds will go to help the horses find new homes if you can’t.
There have been quite a few Canadians buying yearlings at the marathon Keeneland yearling sale that began last week.
Here is some of the buyers:
JIM & SUSAN HILL – at least 9 purchases so far including a Kentucky bred YEST IT’S TRUE colt for $130,000. The Hills bought Canadian-breds too – an Indian Charle- Social Woman colt for $85,000.
FRANK MERMENSTEN, whose wife WEILA YE also owns horses, bought a canadian bred colt for $150,000 (did RESERVOIR give him the Queen’s Plate fever?). This colt has Plate breeding – he’s by SUCCESFUL APPEAL and is a half brother to SQUARE EDDIE.
GAIL COX has bought a pair for $85,000 and $40,000 – the former a colt by Indian Charlie.
ROCCO D’ALIMONTE and FRANK ANNECCHINI have purchased 2 – both Canadian breds. One is a $65,000 Songandaprayer-Embur Sunshine colt, a half brother to stakes winner Ten Flat and the other is a $37,000 grey colt by Rockport Harbor out of Cat Lea.
ROGER FORTIER bought a Candian bred Stormy Atlantic colt out of Bimini Breeze for $40,000.
READE BAKER bought for Harlequin Ranches, a Macho Uno filly for $40,000.
One of the top CANADIAN BRED prices was a $300,000 Touch Gold-Her Eminence colt bought by trainer Tim Ritchey,agent.
GUESS WHO’S BACK
If you are following the worktabs lately you will notice that Canadian bred Grade 1 winner SQUARE EDDIE is up to 5 furlongs as he is on the comeback trail after having been sidelined around Kentucky Derby time.
The son of Smart Strike is owned by J. Paul Reddam.
Also working is PATENA, who was also a Derby hopefu;l until he was sidelined. He is owned by IEAH and was a stakes winner at 2 in Canada last year.
LET’S GET BACK TO BUSINESS!~
RACING TONIGHT AT WOODBINE, ON THE SCORE
SCOREBOARD – WOODBINE TRAINERS
Mark E. Casse 269 45 44 36 $3,360,754
Sid C. Attard 186 40 24 26 $2,072,637
Steven Asmussen 175 35 30 25 $1,431,866
Robert P. Tiller 237 34 45 33 $1,668,769
Reade Baker 209 32 31 33 $1,863,860
Roger L. Attfield 121 32 19 12 $2,282,002
Malcolm Pierce 147 31 19 20 $2,588,168
Terry Jordan 70 31 9 12 $1,188,185
Scott H. Fairlie 206 29 27 36 $1,759,641
Nicholas Gonzalez 191 28 24 22 $1,447,756
Josie Carroll 127 26 18 24 $1,665,580
Brian A. Lynch 77 21 9 9 $1,062,365
Patrick Husbands 655 122 114 106 $7,429,072
Chantal Sutherland 642 93 94 92 $5,219,338
James McAleney 422 83 55 62 $4,201,414
Emile Ramsammy 542 81 65 58 $3,547,066
Eurico Rosa Da Silva 489 77 80 56 $5,157,940
Tyler Pizarro 500 72 76 64 $3,942,059
Emma-Jayne Wilson 608 69 89 79 $4,128,613
Todd Kabel 309 48 34 30 $2,561,178
Luis Contreras 237 46 39 31 $2,035,472
Justin Stein 454 42 54 39 $2,001,989
Corey Fraser 241 27 35 23 $1,460,625
Jono C. Jones 339 27 30 49 $2,257,635
Gerry Olguin 317 27 30 40 $1,542,470
Richard Dos Ramos 203 26 18 29 $1,410,871
Robert C. Landry 259 25 25 33 $1,732,238
Constant Montpellier 240 22 26 29 $1,020,688
BILL FINLEY AND HOW FANS MAY BENEFIT FROM SALES BLOODBATH
Dipping sales may force change
“They’re going to start running more and they’re going to start sticking around longer”
It’s a bloodbath in Kentucky, where prices have plummeted at the Keeneland September yearling sale and countless breeders and consignors are looking for a bridge from which to jump. It’s been a terrible week for the breeding industry, but a good one for the sport of horse racing as a whole.
Horse sales everywhere had been struggling over the last many months, but now one has gone off a cliff. And it’s not just any sale — Keeneland September is far and away the most important yearling sale in North America. What this means is that the economics of the game have suddenly and dramatically shifted, creating a new paradigm where more money can actually be made racing a good horse than breeding a good horse. For a sport that can’t get its stars to run after their 3-year-old campaigns or find a trainer willing to race a top horse more than five times a year, this is very good news.
Through the first four days of Keeneland September, the most important sale of its kind in North America, the average price is down 31.6 percent and gross revenue has dropped 42.5 percent. Even horses by the very best sires aren’t exactly breaking the bank. Ten horses into the sale, the tone had been set. One A.P. Indy filly sold for $65,000, another went for $90,000. A Storm Cat filly did not reach its reserve, with the bidding only getting up to $140,000.