BIOFUEL romps at Woodbine

Norm Files photo



Biofuel turns on the jets

Co-champion 2yo filly in Canada BIOFUEL was heavily bet and mostly everyone’s pick to win her season debut in the Star Shoot Stakes yesterday at Woodbine and she didn’t disappoint.

Just as she did in her career debut last year, the filly stayed close to the pace in the 6 furlong event, let the speed take off a bit and then she tipped out to the 5 path off the turn and swallowed up her rivals.

It was a bit of vindication for the gal who had such a troubled trip in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies last year in California.

Her time of 1:10 was good for an 81 Beyer Figure.

“She sat behind those horses and went around them,” said trainer Reade Baker, who

will point Biofuel towards the La Lorgnette Stakes on May 23 at Woodbine. “My job is to get her mellow for the La Lorgnette. I was very, very happy with her. We’ll look to fry some bigger fish.”  

Brereton Jones owns and bred the filly, and one of his first horses was the dam of Biofuel, Ms. Cornstalk.


NBC show quite cool

40 to 1 shot STATELY VICTOR is on his way to the Kentucky Derby for Kentucky’s attorney general Tom Conway after he swept from well off the pace to win the Blue Grass Stakes with a 94 Beyer Figure.

Trained by Mike Maker, the colt is a Frank Stronach-bred fellow – by Ghostzapper out of Grade 1 winning grass mare Collect the Cash.

But turf was not Stately Victor’s surface of choice during the winter and he came off that  for yesterday’s race and ran the best event of his career.

The colt was bought back by Hidden Brook as a yearling for $110,000 but sold as a 2yo for $250,000 at the Adena Springs sale (which is coming up soon).

In Arkansas, the $1 million Arkansas Derby was a bizarre race. LINE OF DAVID (Lion Heart) was under a guzzle hold by jockey Jon Court early in the 9 furlong race but was streaking along in 22 and 46 and change. He was swarmed off the final turn and everyone was staggering and he still held on to win.

He was 17 to 1. No Beyer Figure was up by Daily Racing Form as of this morning.

It’s fun to see the racing on NBC now and then, especially at Derby time. A feature on Gary Stevens trip to see some Derby winners in retirement was nice and the former jockey shed a tear when grazing POint Given as he recapped how he ‘messed up’ when he rode the horse in the Derby.


 HOLDING PATTERN – LINE OF DAVID hangs on in Arkansas.

Cindy Pierson Dulay photo







   1. (1.)    Lookin At Lucky ($1,480,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (trained by Bob Baffert)

   2. (2.)    Noble’s Promise ($738,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Ken McPeek)

   3. (3.)    Rule ($645,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)

   4. (4.)    Sidney’s Candy ($630,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (John Sadler)

   5. (5.)    Eskendereya ($600,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)

5.      (New)   Line of David ($600,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (John Sadler)

   7. (6.)    Mission Impazible ($473,434) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)

   8. (7.)    Ice Box ($457,500) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Nick Zito)

   9. (New)   Stately Victor ($451,112) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Mike Maker)

  10. (8.)    Endorsement ($400,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Shannon Ritter)

  11. (9.)    Conveyance ($386,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Bob Baffert)

  12. (10.)   American Lion ($378,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Eoin Harty)

  13. (14.)   Dublin ($373,208) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (D. Wayne Lukas)

  14. (25.)   Super Saver ($363,832) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)

  15. (11.)   Discreetly Mine ($340,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)

  16. (12.)   Dean’s Kitten ($326,475) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Mike Maker)

  17. (15.)   Interactif ($307,950) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Todd Pletcher)?

  18. (13.)   Awesome Act ($285,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Jeremy Noseda)

  19. (34.)   Paddy O’Prado ($250,950) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Dale Romans)

  20. (16.)   Homeboykris ($250,500) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Rick Dutrow Jr.)

  21. (21.)   Uh Oh Bango ($237,952) – Unknown (Kory Owens)

  22. (17.)   Jackson Bend ($230,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Nick Zito)

  23. (18.)   Backtalk ($225,916) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Tom Amoss)

  24. (19.)   Aikenite ($221,750) – Unknown (Todd Pletcher)

  25. (20.)   Make Music for Me ($218,750) – Unknown (Alexis Barba)

  26. (t-22.) Odysseus ($183,750) – Unknown (Tom Albertrani)

  27. (t-22.) A Little Warm ($180,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Tony Dutrow)

  28. (t-22.) Setsuko ($180,000) – May 1 Kentucky Derby (Richard Mandella)

29.     (26.)   Pleasant Prince ($166,250) – Unknown (Wesley Ward)

  30. (27.)   Tempted to Tapit ($156,000) – Unknown (Steve Klesaris)


It’s close to the time of year when – 12 months ago, a Canadian champion flew into Churchill Downs and roared away with the Kentucky Derby as a most unlikely winner.

MINE THAT BIRD, previously trained at Woodbine by Dave Cotey who bought the Birdstone colt at auction, never went on to recapture that memorable moment but worked hard in his later events.

Thoroughblog has learned that MINE THAT BIRD had ankle surgery in late January at Colorado State and is still recovering, although the gelding was returned to training a few weeks ago according to Daily Racing Form.

The Setphen Foster on June 12 at Churchill Downs is a long-term goal.


Small fields on Friday led to a light day at the windows – just a smidge over $1 million was bet on the card andit was a bit scary how so few people there were at the track that day.

But the horsemen did well with big purses and small fields.

Owner/trainer PAT PARENTE own the first race on Friday with the Ontario bred CASHIN ON A DREAM, (Woke Up Dreaming), who won a maiden allowance under Eurico Rosa Da Silva. The 3yo was bred by Jim Sabiston.

Impressive winners on Friday’s card included the 10-year-old BALLEN ISLE, a wonderful fellow who looked super before his $8,000 claiming race for owner William Sorokoloit and trainer Darwin Banach. The old timer ran to his looks.

Ontario bred TENNIS BRACLET won the first leg of the Pick 4 as the favourite. The event was a little allowance dash and she was the first winner of the season for trainer Mark Fournier. The filly was bred by Cavendish Holdings (Dick Bonnycastle), sold by Cara Bloodstock at auction and bought for $2,500 (US) by Gary Neumann.

She is by Bold ‘n Flashy out of Aphobic Lady.

Tennis Braclet ran a 77 Beyer Figure.

BETELO won a low level claiming event with flair for Alpine Stakes and trainer Francesca Armata and he made a super pre-race appearance.

The almost-white THE CROONER led all the way to win the 6th race for Bridle Path Farms and trainer Mike Doyle while the Foxtrail fellow PANTASTIC won his maiden in race 7 for owner/breeder Colebrook Farms.

And speaking of old-timers, it’s hard not to cheer for WHOLELOTTABOURBON, the champion 2yo 6 years ago who is still going strong. With his favourite rider, David Clark, on board, the gelding won the last race on Friday

for $8,000 claiming for his 11th win in 26 races.

He has earned over $437,000.

On Saturday, the day started out with a rare .10 to 1 shot – ASK THE BESTMAN, returning from a 10 month layoff for a maiden allowance and just barely hanging on to win and pay $2.20.

 Owned and trained by Laurie Silvera, the Where’s the Ring 3yo was starting for just the 3rd time.

IN race 2, the half sister to champ RAHY’S ATTORNEY, Amazing Miss, won her maiden for Herbert Chambers and trainer Richard Morden. The filly is by Van Nistlerooy.

Trainer Mark Fournier won another race – with the classy stakes winner RONALDINO  in race 3 (best bet in the Toronto Star picks yesterday!). The 6yo British Columbia bred just about set a track record as he ran 5 furlongs in 56.64 (56.41 is the record).

The race was for $20,000 claiming.



 PRESS HERE, Norm Files photo







Frank DiGiulo Jr homebred PRESS HERE won her debut by more than 11 lengths in race 4 (hard to do at just 5 furlongs) and she is the 3rd winner for the 14-time winning mare Press Exclusive. The daughter of Tethra did not run all that fast – 58.72 but sure looked good doing it.

Silvera was back later in the day when the Errol Bailey-bred BAILEY’S RING (also by Where’s the Ring) won an allowance race for Ontario sired gals at 8 to 1 over 12 to shot Fabric. The filly was ridden by Emile Ramsammy, who had a big day.

And after winning with Press Here in a maiden allowance, trainer ROBERT TILLER was back to win another maiden allowance with QUEEN ON LINE, owner/trainer Ron Clarkson’s Bold Executive filly out of his mare Opening Line.

The split went a touch faster with a time of 58.64, just a few 100th’s quicker than Press Here.

American invaders Larry Rivelli and his owner Richard Ravin won their 2nd race of the meeting when JUDY MY DARLING drew in from the also eligible list at 10 to 1 in the morning line and won the finale at even-money. The races a $10,000 maiden claiming event.

The TORONTO STAR had 6 winners in the paper yesterday.


 Stakes winner RONALDINO is superin his season debut.

Norm Files photo








16 for 16 and not too many rivals left to beat. That is the story of ZENYATTA, who won the Apple Blossom Friday evening at Oaklawn Park on the day after another great undefeated racemare, PERSONAL ENSIGN, passed away at age 26.

ZENYATTA’S WIN received essentially no mainstream media coverage – not like when the mighty CIGAR went all over and kept winning.

And, quotes from owner Jerry Moss make it sound like the chances that Canada will get to see the great mare slim and none:

Her owner Jerry Moss, when asked about the matchup that didn’t happen after Rachel Alexandra did not enter, said, “We’re going to make our schedule. We like 1 1/8 mile races. We like Grade 1s. We will plot our course, and if Rachel Alexandra wants to join us, she’s more than welcome. But we will plot our schedule with the goal of getting to the Breeders’ Cup.”

A trip to Canada would be cool but the only interesting race for Zenyatta at Woodbine is the Dominion Day at 10 furlongs against boys. Funny Cide came here and that was cool.

Sadly, while many scribes are calling her HORSE OF THE CENTURY, there is not much movement from tracks around the world to push the mare’s incredible record.

When she races next, going for 17 for 17, let’s get the world watching – let’s have some giveaways, a Zenyatta t-shirt…now that would also be cool.


40 horses start, 14 finish

from Sporting Life:

Tony McCoy’s unquenchable thirst for victory in the John Smith’s Grand National was finally met as the Jonjo O’Neill-trained and JP McManus-owned Don’t Push It triumphed amid emotional scenes at Aintree.

Big-race wins are commonplace to the 14-times champion jockey, who is no stranger to rewriting the record books and became the first to partner 3,000 winners a little over a year ago.

But the world famous National over the daunting Liverpool fences had proved his Achilles heel with a trio of third-place finishes the most he had achieved.