EYE OF THE LEOPARD is at the faaaar left, and Mr. Frosicos Two U is at the faaaar right. www.horse-races.net photos.
92 BEYER FIGURE FOR EYE OF THE LEOPARD –
FORT ERIE IS NEXT
– It was a successful Plate day for most concerned – obviously Sam-Son Farms’, which got a big lift with its first Plate win since 2001. And popular jock Eurico Rosa Da Silva is possibly not long from taking over the local colony. The crowd was strong, the weather was nice and betting was up a decent amount:
RICK BALAZ (left) and Mark Frostad (right) sandwich the Leopard and Eurico.
Queen’s Plate – All sources
Plate race only $1,843,587
Plate race only $1,704,944
Plate race only $1,672,794
Plate race only $1,475,947
Plate race only $1,814,061
Plate race only $1,376,769
MUSKATIER was home free in the Grade 3 Singspiel Stakes, also on Plate day.
PRINCE OF WALES SHAPES UP AS 2 HORSE RACE
Daily Racing Form report:
Few Plate runners expected for Prince of Wales
By Bill Tallon
ETOBICOKE, Ontario – With many in the field of 13 taking their best shots at the Queen’s Plate, the road to Fort Erie’s Prince of Wales could be lightly traveled.
In the immediate aftermath of Sunday’s Queen’s Plate, only winner Eye of the Leopard, runner-up Mr. Foricos Two U, and sixth-place finisher Keino West were committed to carrying on to the Prince of Wales. Each would be making his first start on dirt in the $500,000 Prince of Wales, which follows the Queen’s Plate in the Triple Crown series for Canadian-breds and will be run over 1 3/16 miles on July 12. The $500,000 Breeders’, a 1 1/2-mile turf race here Aug. 2, concludes the series.
Mr. Foricos Two U, trained by Catherine Day Phillips, came close to pulling off the upset after forcing and then setting the pace under Mike Smith. “He broke a little sharper than we anticipated, so Mike improvised and was able to get him to settle,” Day Phillips said. “He ran an awesome race.”
Keino West, who was well back early, closed to be beaten 6 1/2 lengths. “He was just too far back; he makes his move too late,” trainer Steve Attard said. “We have to get him going earlier.”
PLATE WRAP – NEWS
HOW RACE WAS WON: Plate Trial winner Eye of the Leopard tracked the pace of Reservoir and Mr. Foricos Two U through fractions of 48.11 for the half-mile and 1:12.93 at three-quarters, then made his move around the far turn and wore down Mr. Foricos Two U (7.65-1) to win by a neck. Oaks winner Milwaukee Appeal (4-1) rallied for the show spot another head back.
FINISHING TIME: 2:03.84 (or 2:03 4/5) for the mile and a quarter, two seconds off the race record (Izvestia, 1990) and 25/100ths of a second slower than last year’s running, the first on Polytrack.
WINNING CONNECTIONS: Sam-Son Farm won Canada’s top race for the fifth time, and trainer Mark Frostad notched his fourth Plate victory. Jockey Eurico da Silva won his first Queen’s Plate.
THE BETTING: Eye of the Leopard paid $6.70 to win after being made favourite in the 13-horse field.
EURICO ROSA DA SILVA
– Eurico Rosa Da Silva came to Canada five years ago with a dream. A leading jockey in Brazil and Macau, Da Silva fell in love with Toronto when he visited family of his wife Claudia and set out to make a name for himself at Woodbine.
(www.horse-races.net at about.com)
While his first few months at Woodbine were trying – jockey agents hung up on him because they couldn’t understand him – Da Silva persevered.
Yesterday, that perserverence paid off as Da Silva collected the biggest win of his career when he guided Sam-Son Farms’ Eye of the Leopard to victory in the 150th Queen’s Plate.
“It means a lot, I’m just a lucky guy to ride (such) a beautiful good horse and have such a great team,” said the 33-year-old.
“Mark (Frostad) has a lot of experience already, it was not his first Queen’s Plate, but it was my first Plate.”
The lightly-raced Eye of the Leopard, a giant colt who has taken his time to learn his racing lessons, was making only his fourth career start in the Plate but had won the Plate Trial Stakes by a neck three weeks ago. The son of top American stallion A.P. Indy out of Sam-Son Farms’ champion filly Eye of the Sphynx, had won his first Woodbine test, against other non-winners the first time he was ridden by Da Silva. He won the Trial and was greeted enthusiastically by the Woodbine fans to be made the 2-1 favourite in the Plate.
Early in the 1 1/4-mile Plate, Da Silva had his colt stalking the modest early pace of Mr. Foricos Two U and longshot Reservoir. “He broke well but I thought the pace would be much faster,” said Da Silva. “Then the gates opened and everything turned different. At the five-eighths pole a horse came up to him and … I had to ask him to move a bit more than I wanted.”
When Mr. Foricos Two U, a 7-1 chance, kicked away to almost a one-length lead, Da Silva knew it would not be easy to pass that rival. “I was just riding him the best I could,” said Da Silva.
At the finish, Eye of the Leopard had ground out a neck win over Mr. Foricos Two U, owned by Rocco D’Alimonte and Frank Anneccchini with the filly Milwaukee Appeal closing fast for third. “It means a lot to me,” said Da Silva. “This is the most important race for Canadians and for me too now because I am Canadian.”
OTHER BITS FROM THE WEEKEND
SMART ENOUGH won his 2nd Highland Stakes – Grade 3 on Sunday. He’s a Horse Chestnut fellow with Jeremy Rose up, www.horse-races.net photo
*SCOTT FAIRLIE CLAIMED THREE HORSES out of one race – the 3rd on Sunday for older horses for $40,000. He took runner-up DELAFROCE, a stakes winner, TOUCHED BY MADNESS, a stakes winner, and OFFICER ROCKET for C E C, 9 HEIRS RACING and HERITAGE HILL.
*That aforementioned race was yet another stunning win for trainer TERRY JORDAN, who dropped CAPTAIN CUGAT in for $40,000 claiming for his season debut and watched his whiz to a win with a career best 95 Beyer Figure (1:09.43 for 6 furlongs). Jordan is 14 for 32 at the meeting – 44%!
Later in the Plate card, WHISKEYONTHEROCKS, owned and bred by Canvasback Farms, remained undefeated with an allowance win, a 92 Beyer Figure and a 4-length crushing of allowance company in 1:15.62. The gelding is a British Columbia bred by Tribunal.
3 for 3 – WHISKEYONTHEROCKS (by the late sire Tribunal, Grade 1 placed, top sire in Washington and 1/2 to Chief’s Crown). Norm Files photo
*The form of MR. FORICOS TWO U, the Plate runner-up, held well. He won an allowance race before his Plate start over CELERITY’S SUMMIT and that laid back gelding came right back 2 races later to win on Sunday at 1 1/8 miles in allowance company. It was the first win of the season for trainer HUGO DITTFACH. The gelding is by Crown Attorney.
Donver Stables ‘ homebred 2yo TAKIDMM (my Mutakkdim) wins his debut on Sunday. Norm Files photo.
* Sam Son Farm’s Catch the Luck, a four-year-old son of A.P. Indy, set the track record for 1 1/8 miles on Polytrack, Saturday at Woodbine. Under Eurico Rosa da Silva, Catch the Luck covered the distance in 1:49.19, shaving .10 seconds off the previous mark, set by Palladio last year.
*The first TURBO CHARGED PICK 6 PAID $203K.
WOODBINE SCOREBOARD – TRAINERS
Mark E. Casse 97 18 17 9 $1,207,719
Nick Gonzalez 83 17 11 5 $812,549
Scott Fairlie 89 16 13 14 $1,065,240
Sid C. Attard 71 16 6 12 $617,948
Robert Tiller 108 15 19 12 $757,349
Terry Jordan 32 14 2 9 $560,692
Steven M. Asmussen 68 13 13 10 $594,346
Malcolm Pierce 58 13 6 7 $919,495
Reade Baker 105 10 17 21 $737,925
Josie Carroll 54 10 9 11 $718,736
Roger L. Attfield 46 10 9 6 $682,488
Sam Di Pasquale 38 10 8 5 $306,665
WOODBINE SCOREBOARD – JOCKEYS
Patrick Husbands 295 65 52 38 $3,441,268
Chantal Sutherland 282 42 45 39 $2,286,169
Emile Ramsammy 248 38 28 33 $1,793,833
James McAleney 195 36 25 32 $1,891,169
Tyler Pizarro 209 34 25 24 $1,564,889
Eurico Rosa Da Silva 237 33 42 31 $2,683,158
Emma-Jayne Wilson 258 28 33 27 $1,610,606
Justin Stein 220 17 26 21 $855,282
Luis Contreras 79 15 14 13 $641,547
Jono C. Jones 148 13 13 18 $911,692
Gerry Olguin 170 11 17 17 $564,733
Richard Anthony Dos Ramos 98 11 10 11 $538,908
Robert C. Landry 115 10 10 14 $697,671
David Garcia 110 10 5 11 $308,712
FORT ERIE SCOREBOARD – TRAINERS
Daryl G. Ezra 35 12 5 6 $110,918
Michael Newell 70 11 7 11 $112,591
Nicholas Gonzalez 37 9 6 8 $88,852
John Simms 30 9 4 5 $83,479
Robert J.W. Johnston 41 8 8 5 $76,255
Lyle Morden 24 7 3 5 $64,781
W. V. Armata 42 6 6 5 $60,690
Daniel Wills 24 6 3 5 $51,360
Howard Keen 43 5 6 4 $63,174
Winston Wilkinson 26 4 4 3 $39,401
Julie Belhumeur 20 4 2 2 $37,554
Stanley G. Smith 18 4 1 1 $32,980
FORT ERIE SCOREBOARD – JOCKEYS
Rui M. Pimentel 143 33 23 23 $318,606
Melanie Pinto 118 21 21 23 $231,865
Kristopher Robinson 106 15 9 16 $155,608
Edward Keith Robinson 82 13 7 5 $113,210
Anthony Stephen 72 12 13 10 $131,392
Mike Mehak 115 12 11 18 $141,657
Christopher Griffith 82 11 16 8 $133,363
Sunny Singh 52 9 10 8 $104,045
David Garcia 46 9 7 3 $92,262
Regina Sealock 92 5 7 5 $76,045
Krista Carignan 42 5 6 6 $60,650
LANDRY NEEDS JUST ONE
– ROBERT LANDRY, champion jockey, has just one victory to go to hit the 2000 mark according to statistics provided to Woodbine.
Landry won the Daily Double on Sunday, Plate day, and he has several mounts tomorrow night that could get him the milestone. It would be appropriate if he won the 7th on SUPER TAK to hit 2000 since the horse is trained by Sue Leslie, who has been instrumental in Landry’s career. Landry also has a Jim Day firster in race 2 and a Mark Casse maiden in race 3 that could surprise.
THE SARATOGIAN COMMENTS ON YEATS – 4 GOLD CUPS!
The event for which Royal Ascot 2009 will be most remembered, however, occurred on Thursday when the grand old stayer Yeats won the 2½-mile Gold Cup for an unprecedented fourth straight year. In doing so, he became only the second 8-year-old to win a race that was first run in 1807.
The result was in doubt until the race’s final stages. When Yeats moved to the front just outside the three-furlong marker, he quickly kicked clear by several lengths. The lead began shrinking, though, as Patkai emerged from the pack and for several strides appeared to be mounting a serious challenge. But Yeats was up to the test, powering down the straight like a messenger from a mythic and all-but-forgotten past to win by three lengths.
“Yeats leads by three entering the final furlong, Patkai in second and Eastern Anthem out wide,” Richard Hoiles said in his dramatic call. “It’s Yeats trying to hold on and make history …. 150 yards to go …. and Yeats is not for catching …. all class …. one of the greatest stayers of all time!”
WATCH YEATS ON YOUTUBE!
BIG WEEKEND FOR ITO RUNNERS AT AJAX
Don Ito and jockey KIM ITO won both stakes races on the weekend at Ajax Downs. On Sunday, the $54,200 Ajax Downs Classic went to Ito’s grey 5yo gelding CASINO NIGHTS by a nose over a good track at 330 yards. The gelding was bred in Texas.
DR. STEPPIN OUT won the $37,500 Never Better than 79 Final Stakes at Ajax Downs on Saturday for 3yo and up quarter horses. The grey 3yo North Dakota bred filly won by a headin the slop.
DR. STEPPIN OUT and Kim Ito. Norm Files photo.