Seen It All Before angled off the rail in the stretch run and powered home a length and a half winner of the $125,000 Vice Regent Stakes over the E.P Taylor Turf Course, Sunday at Woodbine.
The Colebrook Farms homebred, a chestnut son of Niigon-A Familiar Face, entered the 1 1/16-mile Vice Regent off a troubled trip when fourth in the grassy $500,000 Breeders’ Stakes, won by Irish Mission.
“Last time he ran he kept coming on and coming on, and then he got bumped and squished, and he just kept running,” recalled trainer Ashlee Brnjas. “That was the biggest race I’ve run in yet, and it was nice to have one that just ran through all that.”
Jenna’s Wabbit, who was favoured in the Vice Regent off of consecutive scores in the Bold Ruckus, Achievement and Deputy Minister Stakes, hopped out to an early lead in the Vice Regent setting comfortable fractions of :24.05 and :47.13 as Ultimate Destiny tracked from second position.
Seen It All Before, under regular rider Luis Contreras, kept close eye on the front-runners while racing along the rail. Ultimate Destiny was urged into contention through the turn and was set down to battle with Jenna’s Wabbit at the top of the lengthy Woodbine stretch, as Seen It All Before, in need of racing room, angled off the rail and quickly cleared his rivals for the victory in a final running time of 1:35.17.
Ultimate Destiny got up for second, two and a quarter-lengths clear of Jenna’s Wabbit.
It was the second stakes win at Woodbine for Brnjas, who captured the La Prevoyante Stakes with Reconnect, a full sister to Seen It All Before, on September 10, 2011 – – her wedding day.
Contreras was content to stalk the speedy Jenna’s Wabbit throughout.
“I had the best trip in the race,” said Contreras. “I just wanted to stay close with him (Jenna’s Wabbit) and kick on in the stretch. I just got in a little trouble in the middle of the stretch, but he’s a nice horse.”
Seen It All Before improved his record to three wins, two second and two thirds from eight career starts.
He returned $8, $4.80 and $2.50, pairing with Seen It All Before ($8.70, $3.50) for a $56.60 (1-2) exactor. A 1-2-4 (Jenna’s Wabbit, $2.10 to show) triactor was worth $128.10. A 1-2-4-5 superfecta (Courtville) returned $161.90.
Live racing continues at Woodbine on Holiday Monday with a stakes-laden 10-race card which includes the Elgin, Algoma, Simcoe, Muskoka, Halton and Kenora Stakes. First post on Holiday Monday is 1:00 p.m.