QUEEN’S PLATE ACTION KICKS IN TOMORROW WITH THE BARBEQUE and HORSE PARADE…Woodbine reports that CHANTAL SUTHERLAND will return to the track to ride longshot PENDER HARBOUR in the Plate…15 scheduled to line-up for the Plate…


POOL PLAY needs a jump in a..pool!

Matt Wooley/EquiSport photos





The latest Grade 1 winner bred by the famed, and now closed, WINDFIELDS FARM, is POOL PLAY, a son of Silver Deputy – Zuri Ridge, by Cox’s Ridge who stunned fns with his 36 to 1 bomb in the Stephen Foster Handicap. With his stellar dirt pedigre and a first opportuntity to race on it, POOL PLAY rallied extremely wide and was up in the final jumps to win the important race.

Trainer Casse told THOROUGHBRED DAILY NEWS that Norman wanted to see the horse on dirt and the experiment was so that they could see if they had a Breeders’ Cup Classic contender.

Nice experiment!

The horse has had an unuusal past as he was a $180,000 weanling purchase from Windfields by Aspiration Stud. He was then re-sold as a yearling for $625,000 at Keeneland Sept. 2006 to Geathers Racing.

He debuted 2 years later for WINSTAR FARM LLC, was 2nd and then won his maiden 4th time out. Soon after, he was bought by Will Farish.

In 2009, Pool Play won the Grade 3 Durham Cup.

But following that, the horse went on an 11 race losing skid and was not doing much of anything under riders such as Chantal Sutherland and Jim McAleney. Late last year, when stretched out to 1 5/8 miles, he won an allowance race at Woodbine and then the 1 3/4 mile Valedictory Stakes.

This year, the felow was doing the long on grass thing and at odds of 30 to 1, 27 to 1 and 10 to 1, was 4th, 5th and 2nd in graded turf stakes.

Certainly his Foster was his biggest win and it was his biggest career Beyer Figure too – 100.

The Ontario-bred was ridden by Miguel Mena.

Woodbine trainer Mark Casse, along with his assistant, son Norman, had the 6yo horse perfectly prepared off the April – June layoff.

POOL PLAY is one of the subjects in the Mark Casse feature in CANADIAN THOROUGHBRED MAGAZINE this month, as he discusses horses that have posed training puzzles.

from Churchill Downs:

William S. Farish’s Pool Play, the longest shot in the field of 11 older horses at 36-1, rallied from the back of the pack to beat Mission Impazible by a neck to win Saturday’s 30th running of the Grade I, $561,300 Stephen Foster Handicap Presented by Abu Dhabi at Churchill Downs.


        Much like Animal Kingdom who won Kentucky Derby 137 after racing exclusively on turf and synthetic racing surfaces, Pool Play excelled in his dirt debut, which came in the 6-year-old’s 28th career start. He clocked 1 1/8 miles in 1:50.52 over a surface that was upgraded to “fast” after overnight rain caused the track to be rated “sloppy” for most of the 12-race card.


        Pool Play paid $75.20, which was third highest winning payoff in the 30th running of the race. Seek Gold ($185.40) was the largest in 2006, followed by Colonial Colony ($127.20) in ’04.


        Locally-based jockey Miguel Mena, who notched the second Grade I win of his career, rode the winner for Canadian-based trainer Mark Casse, who has a string of horses at Churchill Downs with his son and assistant Norman. It was Casse’s fourth Churchill Downs stakes win and first since winning the 1988 WHAS-11 with One That Got Away – the same year he won the Spring Meet title with 29 victories.


        Regal Ransom, the mild 9-2 favorite, broke alertly in the competitive cast and led the field through the first three quarters of a mile through fractions of :23.96, :48.74 and 1:13.37 with Worldly, Mission Impazible and Crown of Thorns in close pursuit. Pool Play was unhurried into stride and settled near the tail of field, only to be ahead of Giant Oak, the 9-2 second choice and 122-pound starting high weight. Pool Play commenced his rally with three furlongs to run as Mission Impazible grabbed the lead from a weakening Regal Ransom and went head-and-head with Duke of Mischief at the top of stretch. Pool Play circled nine-wide into the stretch, hit his best stride with a powerful late kick and just got up to nail Mission Impazible in the final strides.


“I was a little concerned early in the race because I felt like the fractions were a little soft,” Casse said. “I was also afraid that Miguel was going to have to go really wide, but he did a great job and only had to swing him out on the final turn. It was a great ride by him and the horse ran great.”


Pool Play, a Canadian-bred son of Silver Deputy who carried 116 pounds, rewarded his backers handsomely with mutuels of $75.20, $29.40 and $14.60. Mission Impazible, ridden by Javier Castellano, returned $8.40 and $5 with Apart under Julien Leparoux another 1 ¼ lengths back in third returning $4.40.


Duke of Mischief was another half-length back in fourth and was followed in order by Giant Oak, Flat Out, Crown of Thorns, Worldly, Equestrio, El Caballo and Regal Ransom.


The $327,127 winner’s share of the Stephen Foster purse boosted Pool Play’s career earnings to $909,556 with a record of 6-6-5 from 28 starts. This was the third stakes win of the dark bay horse’s career, which began on July 5, 2008. His only other graded stakes win came in the Grade III Durham Cup at Woodbine in 2009. In his previous start, Pool Play finished second in the Grade II Elkhorn at Keeneland, 1 ¼ lengths behind Musketier-GER.



THOROUGHBLOG was busy until the wee hours last night and got to enjoy a mob scene and lots of fun at the NORTH AMERICA CUP – $1.5 MILLION!

Jody Jamieson, 35, won the race for his dad, Carl, the trainer and co-owner of UP THE CREDIT, wo is one tough dude.









ILLINOIS-bred BANNER BILL blew past the field and won Woodbine’s VICTORIA STAKES Saturday and earned a 70 Beyer Figure. The son of Rockport Harbor – Temporada, Summer Squall is 2 for 2 in his career for R Plis Partners and trainer Ralph Biamonte. He was adding Lasix off the debut win. David Clark was winning his 5th Victoria Stakes.

The ZADCRACARTA Stakes on the card went to JENNY’S SO GREAT and American rider JESSE CAMPBELL, who thanked trainer Greg de Gannes for the mount after the race.

The Ontario bred by Greatness was bred by celebrity and horse lover DAVID CASSIDY and she is owned by Bill and Vicki Poston. The filly worked hard under heavy pressure to win over a pair of closers, Dancing Raven and Impossible Time.



Colt presumably named for owner Dubinsky

6th-HOL, $51,200, Msw, 3/up, 6f (AWT), 1:10 3/5, ft. DUBBER (c, 3, With Distinction–Star Julia, by Matty G)

debuted with a sixth behind Wilburn (Bernardini) in a Mar. 5 sprint at Santa Anita. The Florida-bred swerved

to avoid a fallen horse in a Apr. 17 test at that track and wound up fourth. Sent off at 3-1 here, the dark

bay assumed command at the outset and showed them a clean pair of heels for a one-length tally. Channel Surf

(Fusaichi Pegasus), favored at 3-2 in his first start since Del Mar, was second best. Sales history: $8,000 RNA

wlng ’08 OBSOCT $160,000 2yo >10 OBSAPR.

Made. Lifetime Record: 3-1-0-0, $33,640.

O-Donver Stable. B-Arthur S Parsont (FL). T-B Baffert


and if you don’t get this pun, then you are a lot younger than I!

At Northlands Park..

WESTERN CANADA H., $51,040, NPX, 6-18, 3yo, 6f,

1:12, sy.

1–BOOMTOWN BRAT, 118, g, 3, Salt Lake–Lazy Days, by Thunder Gulch. (C$28,000 yrl ’09 BRCSEP).

O-Darrell Landry; B-Sunwest Project Mngt Corp (BC); T-Rodney J Cone; J-Ruben Lara; $30,624. Lifetime

Record: 7-4-0-1, $84,234.

2–The Great Caper, 119, c, 3, Albert the Great–Cape

Fog, by Cape Town. ($1,700 yrl ’09 KEEJAN).

O-Bill and Sandy Dory. $10,208.

3–Dollarwaitnonadime, 116, g, 3, Yankee Gentleman–

Buzz Off Buzz, by Mr. Greeley. ($25,000 yrl ’09

KEESEP). O-Wayne Bakke. $5,104.

Margins: 3 3/4, NK, 6 3/4. Odds: 8.70, 8.10, 2.70