Ivan Dalos’ homebred rising star Avie’s Flatter captured the 115th running of the $225,000 Coronation Futurity for Canadian-foaled two-year-olds on Sunday at Woodbine Racetrack.
The Josie Carroll trainee stamped himself as a top contender for year-ends honours with his winning performance in the 1-1/8-mile stakes race considered to be a stepping-stone to the Queen’s Plate.
Avie’s Flatter stumbled at the start and settled off the pace early on in rein to Woodbine’s leading jockey Eurico Rosa Da Silva, racing between horses into the backstretch. Meanwhile, D Magician fired out to a big lead and showed the way through fractions of :24.81, :50.47 and 1:14.65 with Tripwire, Moon Swings and filly Samurai Queen stalking the pace.
Heading into the final turn, Tripwire and Moon Swings challenged the leader while Avie’s Flatter, who was second-to-last, kicked into action. Fanning widest of all outside of fellow late-closer Federal Law, Avie’s Flatter charged to victory in 1:51.73 with Federal Law fighting on to finish second, a half-length back.
“When he broke there, he stumbled a little bit and then I was in position where the pace was not very fast pace. It took me a little bit to relax him,” said Da Silva. “When I got on the backside, I said I’m going because I have so much horse, but then everybody started going and I said, you know what, I’m waiting. Then it turned out to be at the three-eighths pole when I asked him. I had a lot of horse and he just closed so quick.”
Da Silva bested his Woodbine win count from last season notching his 204th victory of the 2018 meet in the Canadian classic. He currently has 50 wins more than any other jockey and the 221 meet record, set by Mickey Walls in 1991, is within reach.
“I’m very, very lucky,” said the multiple Sovereign Award-winning jockey, who recorded his 27th stakes victory at Woodbine this year. “I ride for the best trainers here. Josie Carroll brought this horse today, you see the horse, you just look at the horse and you can tell. I have no words to say how much I’m grateful for everybody – also for the grooms and exercise riders. I love you all and good luck to everybody!”
Bred by Dalos’ Tall Oaks Farm, Avie’s Flatter is sired by Flatter out of the Empire Maker mare Avie’s Empire. He is a half-sibling to Wonder Where Stakes champion Avie’s Mineshaft.
The colt, who also captured the Cup and Saucer turf stakes on October 7 at Woodbine, is now three-for-four and has banked nearly $285,000 in his juvenile campaign.
Sent postward as the 3-5 favourite, Avie’s Flatter paid $3.20, $2.30 and $2.10. He combined with Federal Law ($4.30, 3.70) for a $14.30 exacta.
Moon Swings ($6) finished 2-3/4 lengths behind the top pair to nab third prize over Tripwire. The trifecta returned $44.95 while the superfecta paid $115.60 for $1 tickets.
Jammin Still, D Magician and Samurai Queen completed the order of finish.
Live Thoroughbred racing resumes on Wednesday evening, with first race post time set for 6:45 p.m.