Whoosh – VENTURA blows by the boys.

  Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.






Betting on the up and up

The grass clippings have settled and Sunday’s day of racing at Woodbine, which ended with Sunday’s 11-race card attracting a total all-sources handle of $5,027,002, up 8 percent from $4,645,014 last year, was one of the best racing days in recent years.

The handle on the Woodbine Mile itself was $1,208,562, a rise of 30 percent compared with $932,022 in 2008.

Certainly the racing is what lured people, perhaps a trackside party from Q107 didn’t hurt, and great weather was the key.

From the likes of top trainer IAN BLACK and American jocks Rafael Bejarano and Julien Leparoux talking to fans at a Sunday seminar to the minor celebrities seen in and around the turf club and trackbars all day – it was a buzzing afternoon.













 YEEHAH! Ventura is a handful pre-race.

Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.sept23ven2t1.jpg












sept23haya1.jpg Princess Haya sneaks a win in the Canadian.

Terence Dulay photo.









sept23marsh1.jpgMARSH SIDE (black and red) moves in as he takes the lead in the Northern Dancer. QUIJANO is in the yellow and CHAMPS ELYSEES is about the check.

Cindy Pierson Dulay photo.


The Northern Dancer Stakes certainly added some drama to the Sunday races as MARSH SIDE drifted in several paths through the stretch – on his way to victory, pushed QUIJANO to the rail and then cut off CHAMPS ELYSEES.

Garret Gomez on Champs Elysees said he was sure he was going to win but that Juddmonte horse always appears as if he is going to win and he has nibbled more than scored lately.

JUST AS WELL got the win – what a story he is: trainer Johnathan Sheppard bought him off George Strawbridge (the man he trains for) when Strawbridge was culling his stock. Just as Well had soundness issues.

So the CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL will be a barn burner in less than a month – OCT. 17, and yes, it’s on  Saturday.

While it’s not likely to have any bearing on the Breeders’ Cup – 3 weeks to that world series ofracing, the field is going to lure some crackerjacks from overseas.


Buccellati is on course for the Canadian International at Woodbine next month after pleasing connections on his comeback run in France.

The five-year-old was badly in need of the outing when last of four behind Spanish Moon in the Prix Foy at Longchamp on Sunday.

That was his first run since he was injured when badly hampered in the Coronation Cup at Epsom in early June.

However, he is reported to have returned from his comeback race in tremendous form.

“I’m very happy with him, he’s absolutely thrived since and he goes for the Canadian International,” said trainer Andrew Balding.

“He was definitely a bit rusty and a bit keen and got a bit tired, but he’s in good form now.”

ASK will miss the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp next month and could instead travel to Woodbine for the Group One Canadian International.

The French feature will be held on October 4 with the Canadian International due to be run on October 17.

The Patrick Fahey-owned six-year-old gained a first Group One victory when narrowly denying Youmzain in the Investec Coronation Cup at Epsom in June.

He then ran a third at his last appearance behind stablemate’s Conduit and Tartan Bearer in a remarkable trifecta for trainer Sir Michael Stoute in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot in July.

JUKEBOX JURY looks set to travel to Toronto to bid for a first top-flight success in the Canadian International at Woodbine on October 17.

Mark Johnston had been considering a challenge for the Grade 1 event before the three-year-old won the Grand Prix de Deauville on August 30, and the trainer confirmed it as an intended target on Sunday.

He said: “The plan is to run Jukebox Jury in the Canadian International, and there is a possibility he will he have a run before then, as we are considering supplementing him for a race (Preis Von Europa) at Cologneon September 27.”

CASUAL CONQUEST was a sick horse when failing to fire in last weekend’s Tattersalls Millions Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown but Dermot Weld has the option of a Canadian stage next month for his Group One performer to bounce back to form.

“He had a very heavy head cold,” the Curragh trainer said yesterday.

SUPPORT THE LONGRUN GALA in the honour of horses such as


Stakes winner DASHING ADMIRAL lost for $5,000 claiming yesterday at Fort Erie.

10-year-old COOL SELECTION, an Ontario bred who has won $673,000, was 2nd for $4,000 claiming last night at Remington Park.

TWISTED WIT, a stakes winner and almost millionaire, was 5th and lugging out for $12,500 claiming at Monmo9uth Park last week.

The LONGRUN GALA is Friday night at Woodbine and proceeds will go to help the horses find new homes if you can’t.



There have been quite a few Canadians buying yearlings at the marathon Keeneland yearling sale that began last week.

Here is some of the buyers:

JIM & SUSAN HILL – at least 9 purchases so far including a Kentucky bred YEST IT’S TRUE colt for $130,000. The Hills bought Canadian-breds too – an Indian Charle- Social Woman colt for $85,000.

FRANK MERMENSTEN, whose wife WEILA YE also owns horses, bought a canadian bred colt for $150,000 (did RESERVOIR give him the Queen’s Plate fever?). This colt has Plate breeding – he’s by SUCCESFUL APPEAL and is a half brother to SQUARE EDDIE.

GAIL COX has bought a pair for $85,000 and $40,000 – the former a colt by Indian Charlie.

ROCCO D’ALIMONTE and FRANK ANNECCHINI have purchased 2 – both Canadian breds. One is a $65,000 Songandaprayer-Embur Sunshine colt, a half brother to stakes winner Ten Flat and the other is a $37,000 grey colt by Rockport Harbor out of Cat Lea.

ROGER FORTIER bought a Candian bred Stormy Atlantic colt out of Bimini Breeze for $40,000.

READE BAKER bought for Harlequin Ranches, a Macho Uno filly for $40,000.

One of the top CANADIAN BRED prices was a $300,000 Touch Gold-Her Eminence colt bought by trainer Tim Ritchey,agent.


If you are following the worktabs lately you will notice that Canadian bred Grade 1 winner SQUARE EDDIE is up to 5 furlongs as he is on the comeback trail after having been sidelined around Kentucky Derby time.

The son of Smart Strike is owned by J. Paul Reddam.

Also working is PATENA, who was also a Derby hopefu;l until he was sidelined. He is owned by IEAH and was a stakes winner at 2 in Canada last year.




Mark E. Casse         269      45      44      36      $3,360,754

Sid C. Attard           186     40     24     26     $2,072,637

Steven Asmussen     175     35     30     25     $1,431,866

Robert P. Tiller        237     34     45     33     $1,668,769

Reade Baker          209     32     31     33     $1,863,860

Roger L. Attfield     121     32     19     12     $2,282,002

Malcolm Pierce       147     31     19     20     $2,588,168

Terry Jordan          70     31     9     12     $1,188,185

Scott H. Fairlie          206     29     27     36     $1,759,641

Nicholas Gonzalez     191     28     24     22     $1,447,756

Josie Carroll            127     26     18     24     $1,665,580

Brian A. Lynch           77     21     9     9     $1,062,365


Patrick Husbands       655      122      114      106      $7,429,072

Chantal Sutherland     642     93     94     92     $5,219,338

James McAleney        422     83     55     62     $4,201,414

Emile Ramsammy      542     81     65     58     $3,547,066

Eurico Rosa Da Silva     489     77     80     56     $5,157,940

Tyler Pizarro              500     72     76     64     $3,942,059

Emma-Jayne Wilson     608     69     89     79     $4,128,613

Todd Kabel                 309     48     34     30     $2,561,178

Luis Contreras            237     46     39     31     $2,035,472

Justin Stein               454     42     54     39     $2,001,989

Corey Fraser            241     27     35     23     $1,460,625

Jono C. Jones          339     27     30     49     $2,257,635

Gerry Olguin            317     27     30     40     $1,542,470

Richard Dos Ramos    203     26     18     29     $1,410,871

Robert C. Landry        259     25     25     33     $1,732,238

Constant Montpellier     240     22     26     29     $1,020,688



Dipping sales may force change

“They’re going to start running more and they’re going to start sticking around longer”

It’s a bloodbath in Kentucky, where prices have plummeted at the Keeneland September yearling sale and countless breeders and consignors are looking for a bridge from which to jump. It’s been a terrible week for the breeding industry, but a good one for the sport of horse racing as a whole.

Horse sales everywhere had been struggling over the last many months, but now one has gone off a cliff. And it’s not just any sale — Keeneland September is far and away the most important yearling sale in North America. What this means is that the economics of the game have suddenly and dramatically shifted, creating a new paradigm where more money can actually be made racing a good horse than breeding a good horse. For a sport that can’t get its stars to run after their 3-year-old campaigns or find a trainer willing to race a top horse more than five times a year, this is very good news.

Through the first four days of Keeneland September, the most important sale of its kind in North America, the average price is down 31.6 percent and gross revenue has dropped 42.5 percent. Even horses by the very best sires aren’t exactly breaking the bank. Ten horses into the sale, the tone had been set. One A.P. Indy filly sold for $65,000, another went for $90,000. A Storm Cat filly did not reach its reserve, with the bidding only getting up to $140,000.