Notching the biggest win in her career, longshot Professor’s Ride, with Michelle Rainford aboard, outfought favoured Strut the Course down the stretch to win the featured $125,000 La Prevoyante Stakes, Saturday at Woodbine.
It was the third win in 13 career starts for the daughter of Silent Name-Cosa Rara, bred and owned by Hard Eight Stables and Ace Racing and trained by Scott Fairlie.
The La Prevoyante, an Ontario Sire Stake, drew eight three-year-old fillies for the one mile turf contest. The race is named for one of Canada’s greatest fillies, who in 1972, the same year when Secretariat was a juvenile, won an Eclipse Award as North America’s outstanding two-year-old filly after a brilliant, undefeated 12-for-12 campaign.
Silent Love cut out the early fractions over a yielding E.P. Taylor Turf Course, clipping along through a 24.20 opening quarter, a 48.56 half mile and six panels in 1:13.74, while holding a two length lead over Professor’s Ride. Meanwhile, the favourite, with Todd Kabel, had come from last place to challenge the front runners turning for home.
As the pacesetter faded in mid-stretch, Professor’s Ride picked up the torch and continued on gamely, fending off the challenge of Strut the Course by a long neck, in a final time of 1:39.36. Primordia finished third, four lengths behind.
It was the third consecutive turf outing for Professor’s Ride, who came into the La Prevoyante off a second place finish in an allowance race August 5, following a closing fourth-place finish in the seven furlong Passing Mood Stakes on July 13 in her turf debut.
It was the first stakes win not only for Professor’s Ride but also for jockey Michelle Rainford.
“I’m quite happy it finally happened,” understated Rainford, about winning her first stakes race in a six year injury-interrupted career. “It’s like getting that little monkey off your back.
“The whole line of them (offspring of Cosa Rara) seems to have some kind of behavioral issues along the way. But what I liked about her (Professor’s Ride) is that she’s very competitive. And she really showed that today down the lane. She looked that other horse in the eye and decided today they’re not getting by her. I was hoping to not have the lead, so everything set up nicely and she really delivered.”
Said Fairlie, “She’s been doing really well the last couple of months. She’s put on weight and really filled out. She’s just been on her game. We have the pony with her every morning. She’s very quirky. She will kick the eyeballs out of a snake.”
Sent postward a 15-1 outsider, the third longest shot on the board, Professor’s Ride paid $32.70, $9 and $5.70, combining with Strut the Course ($3.40, $2.50) for a $115.90 (6-2) exactor. A 6-2-8 (Primordia, $5.20) triactor was worth $868.80 while a $1 Superfecta [6-2-8-4 (Silent Love)] returned $1,471.85.