One Bad Boy good to go in coast-to-coast score in 160th running of the Queen’s Plate
Queen’s Plate day smashes single day wagering record at Woodbine
TORONTO, June 29, 2019—One Bad Boy was good to go for the 160th running of the Queen’s Plate on Saturday at Woodbine, taking charge early and fending off a prolonged challenge from Avie’s Flatter to pull away for a 3 ½ length tally under Flavien Prat.
The $1 million Queen’s Plate, the 1 ¼ mile race which is the opening leg of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown for Canadian-bred three-year-olds, was the first Canadian starter for California-based trainer Richard Baltas.
“He (Avie’s Flatter) was next to me, so I knew he was the horse to beat,” said Prat, who was riding his second stakes winner of the day after capturing the $100,000 Charlie Barley with The Black Album.
“By the eighth-pole, I asked him to reengage and he drove away,” Prat continued. “So from that point, I thought I was going to win.”
Racing with blinkers off, One Bad Boy became the 11th horse to lead throughout the Queen’s Plate in its modern history and the first since Midnight Aria in 2013. His opening quarter went in :24.42, with the half in :49.52, three-quarters in 1:14.18, the mile in 1:37.83 and the 1 ¼ miles in 2:02.98.
Prat, winner of this year’s Kentucky Derby when Country House was elevated to first place, becomes the first jockey to win both the Kentucky Derby and Queen’s Plate since Kent Desormeaux completed the feat in 1998 with Derby winner Real Quiet and Plate champion Archers Bay. Bill Hartack also achieved the Derby-Plate double with the immortal Northern Dancer back in 1964.
The complexion of the Queen’s Plate was altered at the outset when Skywire, the 2-1 post time favourite starting from post 10, did not get away alertly and then was hampered badly by an inward-breaking Tone Broke.
The stewards posted the inquiry sign but following brief deliberations, the result remained unchanged.
Avie’s Flatter had worked out a good trip after beginning from the outside post 14 and was raced in second-place behind One Bad Boy throughout.
“Second-best today,” said Javier Castellano, jockey of runner-up Avie’s Flatter. “Not much to say. Kept tracking the winner right there all the way on the lead. He never stopped and he never came back to me. I was in perfect position in the race, the race was slow and I was right next to him (One Bad Boy) but I couldn’t get by.”
Josie Carroll, trainer of Avie’s Flatter, Canada’s champion two-year-old male of 2018 for owner/breeder Ivan Dalos, echoed Castellano’s sentiments.
“I thought Avie’s Flatter ran a great race,” said Carroll. “He stalked the winner all the way and he couldn’t get by him. I think he ran a great race and was second-best today.”
Tone Broke, racing on a synthetic surface for the first time, regrouped following his unfortunate beginning and loomed a threat around the final turn but failed to seriously threaten the top pair in finishing third, 3 ¼ lengths behind the runner-up.
“But after (the start), it was just so perfect. I was just sitting right behind the speed,” said Luis Contreras, who rode Tone Broke for trainer Steve Asmussen.
“I thought I had a really good chance to win. And, it was not enough to win the race, but I’m very pleased how he ran first time on the Tapeta.”
He’s A Macho Man, also trained by Carroll but racing for the Di Scola Boys Stable, closed from well back for fourth money, another 2 1/2 lengths back.
Desert Ride, the lone filly in the lineup, made up some ground but failed to reach serious contention and gave up fourth place in the closing yards, ending fifth as the 6-1 fourth choice
Lucas n’ Lori, at 123-1, ran sixth and was followed home by Federal Law, Pay for Peace, Rising Star, Krachenwagen, Skywire, Suitedconnected, Moon Swings and Jammin Still.
One Bad Boy was winning his first stakes race for owners Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard.
Bred in Ontario by Ron Clarkson, the Twirling Candy ridgling was coming off a second-place finish in the Alcatraz Stakes over one mile of Tapeta at Golden Gate.
“It was awesome, very awesome,” said Greg Hall. “We were a little worried about his ability to run the mile-and-a-quarter, but you saw that… he started pulling away, so we’re very excited about that.”
Brooke Hubbard, a bloodstock agent who also acts as Sajay’s racing manager, also rejoiced in One Bad Boy’s finest hour to date.
“It was hard to say anything up there or to even look,” said Hubbard. “But the last (part), we were all so excited.”
The $400,000 Prince of Wales Stakes, a 1 3/16-mile race over Fort Erie’s dirt oval, is the next race in the tri-surface OLG Canadian Triple Crown series, which winds up with the $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes at 1 ½ miles on the E.P. Taylor Turf Course.
The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation is sponsoring a new $500,000 bonus for a series sweep. Wando, in 2003, was the last horse to sweep the series and the seventh since its exception in 1959.
One Bad Boy, who took late money, returned $9.70, $4.80 and $4. The 5-14 exactor with Avie’s Flatter ($4.30, $2.80) returned $38.30 and the 5-14-11 trifecta completed by Tone Broke ($8.50) was worth $202.25 for a $1 ticket.
He’s A Macho Man rounded out the 5-14-11-8 superfecta of $1,776.70.
Saturday’s 13-race program produced a record handle for Queen’s Plate day totalling $18,005,929, up 23.11 per cent from last year’s $14.6 million total. Horseplayers wagered a record $4,620,092 on the race itself, with on track handle growth of 14 per cent.