Trainer TODD PLETCHER was pleased with QUEEN’SPLATEKITTEN’S manner of winning the Marine Stakes last weekend and said the plan now is for the colt to return to Woodbine just days before the Plate.

The ‘Kitten’ made easy work of the Marine field, which included just one other Plate eligble in Oh Camada, and he received an 84 Beyer Figure.

Pletcher trains the colt for Nicholas Brady, former treasury secretary for presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush.

“He’s back at my barn here at Belmont,” said Pletcher “I was pleased with the way he settled and ran in the Marine.”

The trainer said that the Blue Grass Stakes, the colt’s previous race, “didn’t go as planned” as he was perhaps used up a bit too much early and that style was not to his liking.

Pletcher also said that Eurico Rosa Da Silva had made a point to see the trainer about the colt during the winter at Aqueduct and since John Velazquez was busy, he was granted the mount.

“There’s a very good chance he will ride him in the Plate, I will talk to Mr. Brady about that.”

Da Silva has won the last 2 Plates.

More Plate bits –

BOWMAN’S CAUSEWAY continues to sneak along with little workouts in New York, perhaps the colt is still on the Plate radar for trainer Patrick Biancone.

JOJO’S MOJO could enter the Plate picture with a maiden win on Saturday at Woodbine. He was suplemented for $5,000.

KUROGANE, a maiden winner for Chiefswood Stable, worked 1:01 jhandily this morning at Woodbine.

2011 Queen’s Plate Contenders

1. Queen’splatekitten

2. Bear’s Chill

3. Oh Canada

4. Inglorious 

5. Elite Alex

6. Red Ace

7. Kurogane

8. Hippolytus

9. Enduring Star

10. Black n Beauty

oaks_header_logo.gifTOP OAKS CONTENDERS – could as many as 9 run in the race? Might be less than that!

Woodbine Oaks – June 5


2. Marketing Mix  STAKES PLACED

3. Inglorious  STAKES WINNER

4. Bear It’s Time  STAKES WINNER

5. Grand Style STAKES WINNER

THE WOODBINE OAKS will be drawn next Thursday the WEGZ STADIUM BAR in Vaughn. Could be a field of 9-11 with the TOP 5  as listed above plus ABRIANNA, SILVER AMI, SENSE OF PRIDE (Maiden),and perhaps BAGANARA.

NIIGON’S TOUCH,a maiden winner, and DOMINATIONG FORCE are  now out as she will race on Sunday at Woodbine.


NORTHERNETTE, a famous Canadian Oaks winner, 1977, and 2nd in the Plate. Lots of ties to this weeks festivites for NORTHERNETTE. Her rider was AVELINO GOMEZ (the award named for him will be handed out on Oaks day) and her sire NORTHERN DANCER is being honoured in May-June as he was born 50 years ago May 27.



Big night for picking winners again for the TORONTO STAR, which has had 6, 7 winners a day on many occasions in the

last couple of weeks (6 on Sunday).

The Star had 6 winners of 8 races on top last night including some nice priced ones ($20.00).

Seems as if the horse’s are running to form already and it’s not June yet!

The 5yo stallion CAREER HIGH was the 8th winner in the last few days for trainer Mark Casse, taking the 1st last

night for $12,500, non-winners of 2.

The pace fractions were bizarre, as they have been in a lot of route races at the meeting – 26, 52 1:17 and the 1

1/16 miles in 1:48 and change…

Luis Contreras had the horse hugging the rail and close to the pace all the way and he surged clear off the rail in

early stretch. Interesting that this Strong Hope – Ahead by a Century dude won his maiden for $32K last time and was

plunging (and not claimed).



Race 2, yet another scheduled grass race that came off – no turf racing yet after about half a dozen such scheduled races – had the same profile – 25 4/5, with Tierra del Tigre leading early in the 1 mile and 70 yard race, 50 4/5

for the half mile and the Tiger was still leading late and held on under another shrewd steer by Contreras. Nice priced winner at 5 to 2. Gail Cox trains for Sue Foreman, a local owner, breeder and yearling consignor. It was the

5yo gelding’s first race of the season.


Owner/breeder YVONNE SCHWABE celebrated her 2nd win in 2 racing days when ATHENE (Roman Ruler – Shebandowana, by Mt Magazine) won the 3rd race for $32,000. The 3yo filly was making her 2nd start off the layoff and dropped from $40K.

Ridden by Eurico Rosa da Silva, the filly held off Contreras aboard a Casse trainee, Twilight Storm. It was the 2nd win in 8 races for the filly, trained by Mike mattine.

Schwabe and her sister Petra won with Quarterback on the weekend, a 3yo trained by Kevin Attard.


KHABIBULIN scored in race 4, the first leg of the Pick 4 as mostly everyone’s logical pick at 5 to 2. The El

Corredor – Golden Liaka gelding, now 5, won his maiden for $11,500 in his first start of the season for trainer John Charalambous. Emma Wilson rode the lanky gelding for Mario Forgione.

Race 5 – maiden allowance fillies, Ontario sired, and it was yet another OLD FORESTER winner, this time MISER, who was bought by Steve Asmussen for himself at the local sale. The 3yo gal, bred by Bonny Breeze Acres, got up just in the nick of time to nab RUE DE JEAN, who was drawing in from the also eligible list for the 5 furlong race.

Miser is out out Miss Florielo, by Conquistador Cielo.

Race 6 – You had to throw out ITS CHECKMATE’s season opener when he reared up at the start. The grey 4yo by Empire  Maker had super form last fall in just 2 races and big workouts for 2011. He had an ideal stalking trip, covered up behind the pace last night in the $40K claiming sprint and then when Silver Rocket blew the turn, he darted inside under David Moran and won by 6 lengths. He is owned and trained by Audre Cappuccitti and he paid a fat 9 to 1.

The rain continued to pour down as DANCE TO THE MOON, a homebred 2yo filly for C. Scott Abbott, cantered to an allowance win in race 7. The Perigee Moon – Bold and Dancing, Bold’n Flashy filly led all the way through soft pace fractions and skipped away in her 3rd race off the layoff. Looks like a nice prospect for the owner and trainer Mike Doyle. 

BOLD DASH The last race of the night went to firster , a Bold Executive (who else?) gal, who rallied to beat favoured THE QUEEN BEE in deep stretch. The Gardiner Farms-bred is owned by David Macchiusi and trained by Terry Jordan. Jim McAleney rode the filly in the maiden allowance. 

WILDERNESS SONG – 23 Hall of Fame filly

wilderness_song_08_1.jpgMike Burns/Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame photo


Wilderness Song has been laid to rest alongside Dance Smartly at the Milton Farm. Retired from the broodmare band in 2008, she has enjoyed all the comforts of a dedicated and caring staff throughout her lifetime.

Wilderness Song will always be remembered as Sam-Son’s first Gr. 1 winner south of the border, when she captured the Spinster Stakes at Keeneland in 1991. She managed to carve out an outstanding career on U.S. tracks. In 19 starts below the border, she had seven victories and six second-place finishes. Her wins came in the Pimlico Distaff Handicap, the Gr. 2 Molly Pitcher and the Gr. 3 Monmouth Park Breeders’ Cup Handicap and the Gr. 2 Churchill Downs Breeders’ Cup Handicap. She was also stakes placed in races at Churchill Downs, Hawthorne and Detroit. At Keeneland she won three of four starts.

Despite having to face Dance Smartly in the Canadian Oaks and Queen’s Plate, finishing as the runner-up in both of these prestigious races, and the Prince of Wales on Canadian soil, Wilderness Song managed quite nicely, winning the Gr. 3 Mazarine, the important Princess Elizabeth, Bison City, Fury and Belle Mahone Stakes. She won eight times in Canada and in 18 starts had an 8-6-2 record. In 37 starts, Wilderness Song won 15 times and was in the money in 29 races. Of her 37 starts, 31 were in stakes races.

In 1992, Wilderness Song was voted a Sovereign Award as Canada’s champion Older Filly or Mare and in 2008, was inducted into The Canadian Racing Hall of Fame. Her career earnings of $1,482,005 placed her ninth among all leading money-winning Canadian-breds when she retired following the 1993 season.

The Samuel family looks to her talented grandson Giant’s Tomb, to make an impact at the racetrack in 2011 and the broodmare band will continue to produce grandsons and granddaughters of a special mare, who has secured a special place in the history of Sam-Son Farm.


There will indeed be something happening this weekend for the anniversary of NORTHERN DANCER’S birth (May 27).

The track will have a colour program cover and insert and a birthday cake plus a display of memorabilia.

press release came out late yesterday –

TORONTO, May 25 – Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) will be celebrating the life of the great Northern Dancer for  an entire month.

Beginning this Friday, May 27, the date of what would have been the Dancer’s 50th birthday, some Northern Dancer artifacts will displayed at the north entrance.

On Saturday, racing fans can join the party in honour of this anniversary as cake will be served by the second floor north window at 1 p.m.

The official Woodbine program will also feature a colour cover and insert regaling the virtues of Northern Dancer’s  life on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

“Northern Dancer is an obvious Canadian icon,” said Jamie Martin, WEG’s Executive Vice-President of Racing.  “This is our way of celebrating a milestone date and giving the fans their own chance to cherish him.”

Northern Dancer was the first Canadian-bred winner of the Kentucky Derby.  He also won the Preakness, but was foiled

in his bid for the Triple Crown, in the Belmont Stakes, finishing third.  He would later win the Queen’s Plate back  in his home country.

He is also regarded as the most influential thoroughbred sire of the 20th century.

The display will be on through June 27.

MARQUIS DOWNS PREVIEW – Looking good early


Bill Tallon report

The 30-day Marquis Downs meetin g will be off to a flying start Friday, with a total of 78 horses entered for the  eight-race program.

Rick Fior, manager of live racing for the Saskatoon, Saskatchewan oval, was more than pleased with the response to his opening card.

“I think it’s a strong as I’ve seen,” said Fior, adding that the horse population currently stands at about 325 but will reach more than 500 as the meeting progresses.

“The last three or four years, we’ve been at capacity by the end of June,” added Fior.

Wagering on Marquis Downs has never been available other than on-site and at local teletheatres but this year the track will be available to customers of Woodbine’s HorsePlayer Interactive program across most of Canada.

Saskatchewan account holders will be able to wager on their home track and all other tracks offered by HPI by  telephone or internet.

“That’s the big news here this year,” said Fior, explaining that the signal will be streamed on the Marquis Downs website but will not be shown on HorsePlayer Interactive.

Meanwhile, Marquis Downs is beginning the meeting with 12 riders on the grounds.

“Christopher Jadoo, who’s from Trinidad, is back after a two-year-hiatus,” said Fior.

“And apprentice Christopher Fung, who is Jamaican and has ridden at Assiniboia and in Alberta, is new here.” 



Silent Sue, a dark bay filly by Silent Name (Jpn), out of Cold Porridge, by Tiffany Ice, won the 3rd race at

Hollywood Park on May 22, 2011 and became freshman sire Silent Name’s first career winner.

Silent Sue, ridden by Garrett Gomez, led at every point of call to win the 4 ½ furlong $50,000 MSW for owners Robert

Gramer, Jeff Hauptman and Michael Nicolarsen, et al and trainer Walther Solis. Silent Sue was bred by Swifty Farms

in Indiana.

Silent Name (Jpn) is by Sunday Silence, who holds the World Record for the most two year-old winners in a single

season, and is Sunday Silence’s only multiple U.S. G1 stakes performer at stud in North America. Silent Name (Jpn)

stands at McMahon of Saratoga Thoroughbreds, LLC for an advertised stud fee of $5,000.