Yes, it’s that time of year again – the season of GIVING.

Come out to Woodbine today to give back to the horses…LONGRUN DAY!!

This post is dedicated to the memory of STYRIE…




Whew, a week after all the dust from the Santa Anita dirt settled comfortably into the record books, it’s time to gear up again for some super racing action at Woodbine.
While the stakes fields are small, the Coronation is a disappointing field to be sure, the cards for today and Sunday are packed and there are some good handicapping events.

The weather is going to be warm for the next 3 days too, so we will see if that has any effect on the track surface.

The CORONATION FUTURITY is a classic Canadian 2yo race for Canadian born babies and it can often determine an early Queen’s Plate favourite.
The bad news is, it has been since the 1975 winner, NORCLIFFE, since a Coronation winner took the Plate. Ouch.

The top 2yo colt in Canada is probably UNCAPTURED and he is not in the field for John Oxley. Oxley’s DYNAMIC SKY, another top Canadian bred 2yo, is not in the field, nor is Tucci Stable’s cool dude RIVER SEVEN.
But the Oxley train has STAR CONTENDER, the Cup & Saucer winner, in the field and he only has to get past a pair of Sam-Son colts it seems to win this 1 1/8 contest.
STAR CONTENDER, like Uncaptured, was bred by Bill Graham in Caldeon, Ontario.
The main rival is the upwardly mobile UP WITH THE BIRDS, a recent maiden winner for Sam-Son and Malcolm Pierce.

THE AUTUMN STAKES is a much more interesting event, a Grade 2 for the older guys at 1 1/16 miles.
CITY WOLF is the likely favourite by post time off his 2nd place finish to the 3to DELEGATION in the Grade 3 Durham Cup. That winner went on to be 3rd in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile and had things all his own way in the Durham Cup.
City Wolf was 2nd to Alpha Bettor in the Seagram earlier this year and 5th to James Street in an allowance race and he meets both guys today.
The title for champion older male has already been locked away by HUNTERS BAY  it seems as he won the Eclipse and Dominion Day and was 2nd in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile, but this should be an interesting event.

the Blood-Horse offers a preview of the return of last year’s champion 2yo, MARTIMER:

Maritimer, winner of the 2011 Coronation Futurity and champion Canadian 2-year-old, makes his first start since March 31 in Dubai in the $150,000 Autumn Stakes at Woodbine Nov. 10.

Facing older horses for the first time in the Autumn, 3-year-old Maritimer has not raced since weakening to finish 11th in the UAE Derby Sponsored by The Saeed & Mohammed Al Naboodah Group at Meydan. It was the only prior start this year for the dark bay son of Stormy Atlantic.

Equibase lists Seth Benzel as the trainer of Maritimer for owner Ramzan Kadyrov, the controversial Chechen president who was reported to have purchased the Ontario-bred colt in January.

Prior to his sale, Maritimer won the Coronation Futurity and Display stakes in back-to-back fashion last fall to seal juvenile honors in Canada. He is to be ridden in his comeback race by Luis Contreras and they drew post 6 in the seven-horse field.

The Autumn, at 1 1/16 miles on Woodbine’s Polytrack, is the eighth race on the Saturday program at the Toronto track with a 4:27 p.m. EST post. It comes two races after this year’s running of the Coronation Futurity.




Sometimes you can’t help but cheer for PATRICK HUSBANDS to be leading rider again – he won an important race for the Mike DePaulo barn last night, giving that team some good luck, even though the inside rein broke early…kudos to ROCKY ROMANO too!




The Canadians are busy at Keeneland and that is good news. There are those who are buying weanlings and mares and that is good news as we head into a somewhat scary 2013 as far as the industry’s future racing health goes.

On the seller’s list was LADY AUCHAMORE, the dam of Stormy Lord and Incredicat, who brought $500,000 to Kinghaven Farms. The mare is a 9yo and she was sold in foal to Giant’s Causeway.

The most noise made so far has been from Nat Rea’s new REGIS FARMS in King City, Ontario. A former autoparts entrepreneur, Rea has bought 7 horses, weanlings and one mare, for over $1.2 million. His most expensive purchase is a $290,000 weanling by Harlan’s HOliday.

JEFF BEGG’S WINDWAYS FARMS has bought 2 weanlings for $282,000, Josham Farms, Bonnie Kirkwood Peavoy, RJ Bennett and Adena Springs have also been active buyers after 4 sessions.

Canadian stakes star BAY TO BAY brought $425,000 to Rob Smithen:
chart from Thoroughbred Daily News:

162 Bay to Bay r/b’mare prospect 425,000
(m, 5, Sligo Bay {Ire}–Bala, by With Approval)
Consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency, Agent L
Purchased by Shadai Farm

*Robert Smithen was able to secure Bay to Bay for $35,000 as a
Keeneland September yearling of 2008. The mare became a multiple
graded stakes winner and earned $744,728 racing in Smithen’s green



At the Fort Erie racetrack, where the distance to the Canadian slaughterhouse is frighteningly short, and where there are no laws or racetrack policies against slaughter, help for Thoroughbreds has recently risen up from the grooms, owners, trainers and racetrack officials themselves.
read more…