Did you have a Woodbine Mile moment? A Tepin moment?
The darling of the racing world, that elegant lady with her three white feet, TEPIN, was quite weary on Sunday morning as more fans and media buzzed around her stall at Mark Casse’s barn.
In her first race in 3 months, her first outing since that huge trip to England and the win in the Queen Anne on soft grass, Tepin proved best in the Woodbine Mile (106 Beyer Speed Figure) but certainly was not as flashy as she can be. But she was not going to get beat and Robert and Joanne Masterson’s 5-year-old mare simply is amazing,
The chanting of TEPIN! TEPIN! following the race was inspiring as it was great to see the large crowd appreciate a top class racehorse.
Bloggers and other scribes from all over, pl;us photographers on top of photographers crammed into Woodbine. It was cool to Vanessa Ng and Cindy and Terence Dulay from horse-races. net working together at the same track and America’s Best Racing was out in full force.
In fact, bettors on track and off-track appreciate a super card of racing – 12 races including 3 graded stakes races – as the mutuel handle on the day was a stunning $9,638,444, a record for a Woodbine Mile card. The previous mark was $7,187,062, recorded in 2015.
The $9.6 million wagered on the card was the 5th highest number in Woodbine history.
TOWER OF TEXAS, the workmanlike Ontario bred for Scott Dilworth and Tom van Meter, ran the race of his life to be 2nd to Tepin, coming within half a length of the Queen.
Trained by Roger Attfield, the bay gelding was not a certainty to start in the race as Attfield was not sure if he wanted to race the son of Street Sense on a turf course that was getting rain during the day.
In the end, he kept the gelding in and he picked up $200,000 for 2nd place, making him an earner of $625,562 in his career. Eurcio da Silva rode the gelding who was bred by Anderson Farms and Rod Ferguson.
European fellow MUTAKAYYEF was 3rd while the very studdish bad-boy Full Mast finished 4th.
So Tepin goes on to perhaps the Shadwell Mile or the First Lady before she heads to the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita.
MORE STUFF FROM THE WOODBINE WEEKEND..
The $9.5 million bet at Woodbine on Saturday was followed by a hefty $5 million on Sunday to make for an incredible $14.5 million weekend at the track. The racing was great, the fans loved the races and close finishes and visiting horsepeople and media simply gushed at the racing and the track.
TOP BEYER FIGURES FROM FRIDAY – SUNDAY
101 RAINA DE BATAERIA
101 THE PIZZA MAN
97 AMI’S GIZMO
94 GOOD SMARITAN
92 GO BRO
83 MILWAUKEE MIST
THE PIZZA MAN (no puns please) was almost as popular as Tepin on Sunday since the 7-year-old English Channel gelding won the Grade 1 Northern Dancer ($300,000) for breeders Midwest Thoroughbreds. Flavien Prat came in to ride the gelding for the first time and he spotted the fellow right behind front runner World Approval through very slow pace fractions before surging tow win over a game Wake Forest.
Richard Papiese, owned by Midwest Thor., said the gelding had an excuse for his less than stellar start when 5th to Lukes Alley at GUlfstream in February.
His blood came back bad and then we kind of maybe rushed him over to Gulfstream over a track that he doesn’t really like (5th in Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap). And then his blood wasn’t really right again. He had a bad trip in the Stars and Stripes and didn’t really pick up the bit (finishing fourth). It’s all good though. We’ll look at the Canadian International first, and maybe come back for the Breeders’ Cup if it doesn’t come up too quick. It will be up to Roger (trainer Brueggemann). But we want to do what is best for him.”
The Pizza Man is 17 for 31 in his career with $2.1 million in earnings.
The pace fractions of the Northern Dancer, which was run on a turf course that was probably on the good side of yielding and not as soft as we thought it could have been, were a painfully slow 26.97, 53.99, 1:19.92, 1:44.78, and 2:08.77 with a final time of 2:31.75.
In the Canadian Stakes (Grade 2), American trainer Chad Brown ended up in a win photo with himself! His pair of Rainha Da Bateria, owned by Lael Stables, edged heavily favoured mate Dacita at the end of 1 1/8 miles. A daughter of Broken Vow who had not won a race since 2014, she was ridden perfectly by Julien Leparoux who tracked Midnight Miley and got the jump of the field.
The Ontario Derby (Grade 3) was a romp for the top 3yo colt in Ontario, AMIS GIZMO, giving him a big edge as champion 3yo in all of canada. Well ridden by Luis Contrreas, the Giant Gizmo colt, a thick but long colt owned and bred by Ivan Dalos, shot to the lead on a quick and speed favouring Tapeta and romped in track record time* (well, 1:48.30 and the track record is listed as 1:48.33).
Sadly, YO CARM, an invading stakes winner for Chris Block and owner Ed Fortino, broke down on the turn and was put down.
The 2-year-old WIN AND YOU’RE IN RACES on Sunday were contested over a nice turf course that was dried out and plush. Very impressive was GOOD SAMARITAN, a son of Harlan’s Holiday from the family of turf stars such as CARESS. He rallied form last to win in fast time for 1 mile, 1:34.38, or a 94 Beyer Beyer. Bill Mott trains for WinStar and the China Horse Club.
Later, VICTORY TO VICTORY, owned and bred by Charlotte Weber’s Live Oak Plantation, won the Grade 1 Natalma which had 14 gals in the field and it was hairy for some of them. The pace was very, very fast and set things up for the winner, who was winning her maiden for trainer Mark Casse and