TORONTO, June 29, 2018 – One Bad Boy and jockey Flavien Prat won the 160th running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate on Saturday at Woodbine Racetrack. The three-year-old son od Twirling Candy is trained by Richard Baltas and owned by Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard.

Top three order of finish: One Bad Boy-Avie’s Flatter-Tone Broke

Final time: 2:02.98

Flavien Prat (jockey of One Bad Boy)

“He (Avie’s Flatter) was next to me, so I knew he was the horse to beat. By the eighth-pole, I asked him to reengage and he drove away. So from that point, I thought I was going to win.”

How important was it to ride him the race before the Queen’s Plate?

“Just to get a feel of him (riding him in the Alcatraz Stakes). He had the blinkers on, today we took the blinkers off and it probably helped us.”

Greg Hall (co-owner of One Bad Boy)

“It was awesome, very awesome. 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 (Bloodstock agent, Sayjay racing manager)

“It was hard to say anything up there or to even look, but the last (part), we were all so excited.”

Javier Castellano (jockey of Avie’s Flatter, 2nd)
“Second-best today. 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. Second-best today.”
Josie Carroll (trainer of Avie’s Flatter, 2nd)
“I thought Avie’s Flatter ran a great race. 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.”
Luis Contreras (jockey of Tone Broke, 3rd)
“Well, right now they are checking about the break. Because my horse kind of stumbled in the first jump and went and lug in a little – just in the first jump of the break. But the 10 horse didn’t break well at all…
“But after that it was just so perfect I was just sitting right behind the speed. I was very pleased how my horse relaxed. He was so sharp in the post parade and I was a little bit worried. I was just riding behind the speed and once I was in the race, 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.”

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.

One Bad Boy and jockey Flavien Prat winning the 160th running of the Queen’s Plate on June 29 at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

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.”

Jockey Flavien Prat with the Queen’s Plate trophy. (Michael Burns Photo)

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.

By: Colin Nolte and Tommy Cosgrove for

The Queen’s Plate, the most important race for Canadian three-year-old Thoroughbreds, is the oldest continuously run stakes race on the North American continent. The event is steeped in tradition and folklore. From the awarding of 50 Royal Sovereigns, which dates back to the original purse awarded at its first running, to the presence of reigning monarchs or representatives of the Royal family, the annual classic honours both history and modern times as a spectacle and an important day on the Canadian sporting calendar.

Recent editions of this classic event have been won by fillies racing against the best colts in Canada. Last year’s winner Wonder Gadot, 2017 winner Holy Helena, and 2014 winner Lexie Lou each claimed the most prestigious prize in Canadian racing. Three years before Lexie Lou, Inglorious (trained by Josie Carroll) won the Plate. That makes it four filly winners in the past eight years. A remarkable run of success for the ladies of the turf.

When you consider that a Canadian Thoroughbred has only one opportunity to win a Queen’s Plate in their lifetime, this recent rise of filly Plate winners demonstrates we’re in a golden age of Canadian female Thoroughbreds. Wonder Gadot followed up her impressive win with another in the Prince of Wales Stakes, thus capturing two legs of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown. She would later be awarded the Sovereign Award as 2018 Canadian Horse of the Year due to her sensational triumphs over male counterparts.

Holy Helena, Lexie Lou and Inglorious had previously captured the Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser, known with tongue-in-cheek as “The Fillies’ Plate” prior to winning Canada’s biggest race in their respective three-year-old seasons. Inglorious and Holy Helena both were chosen as Champion three-year0old filly for their exploits on the track, while Lexie Lou one upped them by taking 2014 Sovereign Award Horse of the Year honours, as well as Champion three-year-old filly.

There have been 37 filly winners of the Queen’s Plate in the first 159 runnings of the race.  Twenty-three per cent (23%) Queen’s Plate winners are fillies. This is an extraordinary record for the distaff side of racing. Many famous fillies in Canadian racing have beaten the boys including Flaming Page, Canada’s Queen of Racing, the incomparable Dance Smartly, and her daughter Dancethruthedawn. Legendary “Queens” in their own right, they are members of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame.  The latest four filly winners are poised to be just as revered to future generations.

Sam-Son Farm’s Desert Ride is the lone filly contender in this year’s Queen’s Plate for trainer Neil Howard. (Michael Burns Photo)

This year’s edition, the 160th running of the Queen’s Plate, will have Desert Ride in the field. She’ll need to be at her best because of the stellar field of colts looking to make their own history. Colts such as Avie’s Flatter and Skywire will try their best to keep the ladies behind them at the finish line.

“Lady Power” in the Queen’s Plate is not restricted to the equine females that have participated. Hall of Fame inductee Josie Carroll is the only woman trainer to win the Plate. In fact, Carroll has trained two Queen’s Plate champions (Edenwold in 2006 being the other) and will be sending out this year’s early favourite Avie’s Flatter this year. Popular jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson rode Mike Fox to victory in 2007 to become the only woman jockey to pilot a Queen’s Plate winner.

Trainer Josie Carroll’s Queen’s Plate contender Avie’s Flatter. (Michael Burns Photo)

In a sport which for centuries has been dominated by human and equine males, their female equivalents have risen substantially to not only compete, but to defeat their male counterparts on equal terms. “Lady Power” in the Queen’s Plate has never been more noticeable than what we are witnessing in recent years, as they kick down the doors of what was perceived traditionally as a “Men’s Only” club.

The Queen’s Plate brings the best three-year-old Canadian-bred horses together, with each one vying to become forever known as “A Queen’s Plate Champion.” This annual event also brings out thousands of fans dressed in their finest in attendance. The glamour of fashionably dressed ladies gives the Queen’s Plate an aura of elegance unseen in any other sporting event in this country. With the resounding successes of recent Thoroughbred ladies, an equine “Battle of the Sexes” has brought considerable pleasure to those in attendance. It’s no longer considered as an upset victory for a distaff equine to win the Queen’s Plate, but a distinct possibility.

Competing in a race named in honour of a lady monarch and watching a filly beat the boys seems apropos. Outstanding and fast fillies, talented and professional trainers and jockeys, as well as elegant ladies in attendance give the Queen’s Plate a sense of excitement and intrigue that no other sporting event can offer in Canada. We embrace “Queen’s Plate Lady Power.” There is no other day on the calendar like it.

Story by: Beverley Smith for Woodbine Communications

TORONTO, June 26, 2019–It’s only fitting: two years after her dominant victory in the Queen’s Plate, Holy Helena has come home to race on Plate day at Woodbine, albeit in the Dance Smartly Stakes.

The five-year-old daughter of Ghostzapper, owned by Frank Stronach’s Adena Stables, was chosen Canada’s top three-year-old filly in 2017 after she swept both the Woodbine Oaks and the Plate, before finishing second in the G3 Ontario Derby against colts that year.

Eventually, she won the G3 The Very One Stakes at Gulfstream Park (twice) and the G2 Sheepshead Bay Stakes at Belmont Park in May.

Her first six starts had been on dirt and synthetic tracks, but trainer Jimmy Jerkins switched her to the turf to open her four-year-old season. And she promptly won three consecutive races.

The Dance Smartly is on turf, part of the Ladies of the Lawn Series at Woodbine: a series of graded turf races for fillies and mares that includes the $175,000 G2 Nassau (run on May 26), the $250,000 G2 Canadian Stakes on September 14 and culminating in the $600,000 G1 E.P. Taylor Stakes on October 12. There are $75,000 in bonuses at stake for the top performers based on a point system in the series.

“I think the distance [1 ¼ miles of the Dance Smartly] will be to her liking,” said Adena racing manager Mike Doyle. “Jimmy thinks the same way. And if things work out well, it’s a way to get a start in her here, and we’ll talk about it afterwards. She may stay here.”

They have their eye on the E.P. Taylor Stakes, hoping to get a G1 race to her credit, something that would improve her value. “The E.P. Taylor is a long-term goal,” Doyle said. “We want to add to her value the best way we can and not over race her.”

Holy Helena has started only 17 times in her career, with seven wins and $1,211,578 in earnings. She runs best off a rest, although she was pressed to race with only three weeks between the Oaks and Plate and handled it well, Doyle said. She last raced three weeks ago in the New York Stakes at Belmont, finishing fourth, but didn’t have a good trip.

“They walked and she was caught down on the inside and had trouble getting out,” Doyle said. “Then she had to wait for horses to run by to get out. She came running and got beat less than three lengths.”

It was also a 1 ¼-mile race. Jerkens reasoned that Holy Helena really only got to run for a little bit.

Javier Castellano will ride Holy Helena in the Dance Smartly. Last year, she also ran in the Dance Smartly, finishing third, but Jerkens hadn’t really earmarked the race. She came north for a rest, but when Doyle saw her on the farm, and looking so healthy, and the Dance Smartly coming up rather light, he thought it a good spot for her. She finished third, off the farm.

Holy Helena arrived on Thursday at Woodbine, looking the picture of health, with lots of weight. The laid-back mare recognized her Toronto groom, Denzell Fonseca, pricking her ears at the sight of him after shipping well from New York.

Doyle believes this will be Holy Helena’s final year of racing.

Holy Helena will be up against Starship Jubilee, who finished second to Secret Message in the first leg of the Ladies of the Lawn Series, and a three-year-old from Roger Attfield’s barn.

Starship Jubilee, a $16,000 claim for trainer Kevin Attard who turned into Canada’s 2017 champion turf female – after winning the 2017 Dance Smartly and the Nassau – was sold at a U.S. sale last year. But after Kentucky-based Blue Heaven Farm principals Bonnie Baskin and her son Adam Cornduff bought her privately after the hammer fell, they asked Kevin Attard if he wanted to continue training her. He didn’t hesitate.

“She’s been a great filly,” Attard said. “And they were prepared to race her another year if she was healthy and willing and she has been. She has been a wonderful horse for us.

“A mile and a quarter is as far as she wants to go,” Attard said. “We have been working on getting her to relax early in her races and we’re hoping she does that on Saturday.”

Attfield’s stakes-winning Ickymasho has been retired, or he would have entered her in the Dance Smartly. But instead he is sending her stablemate, the four-year-old filly Cartabianca and three-year-old filly Art of Almost.

“Art of Almost gets in with 111 pounds,” Attfield said. “I think she would like that distance and I think that’s a great weight advantage in that race. So I’m going to give a three-year-old filly a go at it.”

The $175,000 Dance Smartly is the eighth of 13 races on a stakes-filled Queen’s Plate day that kicks off at 12 noon Saturday at Woodbine Racetrack. Here is a look at the complete field in post position order:


1 – Holy Helena – Javier Castellano – Jimmy Jerkens

2 – Art of Almost – Kazushi Kimura – Roger Attfield

3 – Empressof the Nile – Drayden Van Dyke – Graham Motion

4 – Starship Jubilee – Luis Contreras – Kevin Attard

5 – Get Explicit – Patrick Husbands – Barbara Minshall

6 – Cartabianca – Alan Garcia – Roger Attfield

7 – Lift Up – Alex Cintron – Michael Dickinson

8 – Rock my Love – Flavien Prat – Jonathan Thomas

TORONTO, June 26, 2019 – The post position draw for the 160th running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, will be streamed live online this morning.

The media event will be held in the Trackside Clubhouse at Woodbine Racetrack and is scheduled for 9:30 a.m., with proceedings expected to begin at approximately 10 a.m.

Live streaming will be available on Woodbine’s website.

Post positions for the field will be determined with the connections of the contenders first drawing their post selection order then proceeding to pick their post positions in the order determined by the draw.

The Queen’s Plate will be contested on Saturday, June 29. First race post time is set for 12 noon. The 10th race feature will go postward at 5:36 p.m. ET.

TORONTO, June 26, 2019—Avie’s Flatter, Canada’s champion two-year-old male, looms as the horse to beat when he faces 13 other Queen’s Plate hopefuls in the $1 million showpiece over 1 1/4 miles on Woodbine’s Tapeta surface this Saturday.

The 160th edition of the Queen’s Plate, North America’s oldest annually run race, is the first leg of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, a tri-surface series for Canadian-bred three-year-olds which will offer a new $500,000 bonus for a sweep.

Wando, owned and bred by the late Gustav Schickedanz, was the last horse to accomplish the feat while becoming the seventh to pull off the unique triple in 2003. The $400,000 Prince of Wales, run at 1 3/16 miles on the dirt at Fort Erie on July 23, is the middle leg and the $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes, at 1 1/2 miles on the turf back here at Woodbine on August 17, concludes the challenge.

Avie’s Flatter, a homebred who races for owner Ivan Dalos and is trained by Josie Carroll, wrapped up his first campaign with back-to-back wins over fellow Canadian-breds in the Cup and Saucer at 1 1/16 miles on turf and the Coronation Futurity over 1 1/8 miles on the main track.  Norcliffe was the last horse to win both the Coronation Futurity and the Queen’s Plate, completing that double in 1976.

The Queen’s Plate will be the first local appearance this year for Avie’s Flatter, whose previous sophomore outings were on turf and yielded a win in the Grade 3, 1 1/16-mile Transylvania at Keeneland and a close sixth-place finish in the Grade 2, 1 1/16-mile American Turf at Churchill Downs.

Javier Castellano, aboard for those two outings, will retain the mount as he comes in from his Belmont base.

Carroll, who won the Queen’s Plate with Inglorious in 2011 and with Edenwold in 2006, will be looking to give Dalos his first Queen’s Plate score after the owner/breeder fielded runners-up Amis Gizmo in 2016 and Ami’s Holiday in 2014.

The double-draw format was in effect at Wednesday’s post position draw, with the order of selection first established and the connections then choosing their post positions.

Avie’s Flatter, the 5-2 favourite in Woodbine oddsmaker Ernie Perri’s morning line, actually had no choice at all as he was the last to select and defaulted to the outside post position.

“The outside post is probably not ideal but it’s a long way to the first turn and it’s a mile and a quarter race,” said Carroll. “So, I’m not going to have too many concerns about being outside.”

Avie’s Flatter is the 5-2 morning line favourite for the 160th running of the Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, which will be contested this Saturday, June 29 at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

Trainer Mark Casse will be looking for his second straight Queen’s Plate and third overall after clicking with the fillies Wonder Gadot last year and Lexie Lou in 2014. Both raced for owner Gary Barber, who owns Skywire in partnership with Lou Tucci, co-owner of 2013 Queen’s Plate upsetter Midnight Aria.

Skywire came into sharp Queen’s Plate focus when winning this spring’s 1 1/16-mile Wando Stakes and followed up with a good second behind American-bred Global Access in the Grade 3 Marine. Woodbine’s leading rider Eurico Rosa da Silva was aboard for those two outings and has won Queen’s Plates with Big Red Mike (2010) and Eye of the Leopard (2009).

Desert Ride, the heroine of the June 8 Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser, will be looking to follow in the hoofprints of Wonder Gadot and Holy Helena to become the third straight filly to win the Queen’s Plate.

Owned and bred by Sam-Son Farm, Desert Ride is based in Kentucky with trainer Neil Howard and was making both her local and stakes debut in the Woodbine Oaks. Desert Ride scored by a neck there under rider Steve Bahen, who guided T J’s Lucky Moon to his Queen’s Plate $166 record payoff in the 2002 edition.

Sam-Son has owned and bred five previous Queen’s Plate winners, the most recent being Eye of the Leopard. Their earlier successes included the superfilly Dance Smartly in 1991; her daughter Dancethruthedawn and son Scatter the Gold, full siblings who won in 2000 and 2001; and Regal Intention in 1988.

Desert Ride will carry 121 pounds, getting five pounds from her male rivals.

Selecting 10th in the order of the draw, Desert Ride’s connections had the choice of post one or any of the four outside posts and opted for the inside.

“Neil would rather be inside, so might as well just take our way inside and work our way around,” said Bahen.

Adding intrigue to this year’s Queen’s Plate will be a pair of invaders, with One Bad Boy on the grounds for trainer Richard Baltas and Tone Broke due in Thursday from his Churchill Downs base for Steve Asmussen.

One Bad Boy will be racing beyond a mile for the first time after finishing second over that distance in the off-the-turf Alcatraz on the Tapeta surface at Golden Gate. Flavien Prat picks up the mount.

Tone Broke finished second last time out in the Sir Barton, a 1 1/16-mile race on Pimlico’s Preakness Day undercard, and that performance was flattered when winner King for A Day returned to defeat disqualified Kentucky Derby first-place finisher Maximum Security in the Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park. The colt will be making his first start on a synthetic surface.

Luis Contreras, winner of the Queen’s Plate with Holy Helena and Inglorious, picks up the mount on Tone Broke.

The last horse to win the Queen’s Plate while making his Woodbine debut was Wild Desert, in 2005.

Pay for Peace, who upset the 1 1/8-mile Plate Trial on June 8, and Federal Law, the runner-up there while 1-3/4 lengths back as the favourite, will renew their rivalry on Saturday.

Rachel Halden trains Pay for Peace, who was winning his first stakes race in the Plate Trial. Rafael Hernandez, successful with Shaman Ghost in his first Queen’s Plate run in 2015, has the mount.

Federal Law is conditioned by Mark Casse and will be ridden by Jamie Spencer, a go-to rider for Qatar Racing Limited, who will be making the Transatlantic trip. Spencer has won five Grade 1 stakes at Woodbine, all on turf, including Trade Storm in the 2014 Ricoh Woodbine Mile.

Bred in Ontario by Jim Lawson, CEO and president of Woodbine Entertainment, Federal Law was beaten a half-length by Avie’s Flatter in the Coronation Futurity and won the seven-furlong Queenston Stakes this April. The last Plate Trial winner to repeat in the Queen’s Plate was Big Red Mike in 2010, after Eye of the Leopard pulled off that double the previous year and Not Bourbon in 2008.

He’s a Macho Man, a second Queen’s Plate entrant from the Josie Carroll barn, is the least experienced horse in the field with just three starts. His only two outings here yielded smart come-from-behind victories over 1 1/16 miles, however, and he is not to be discounted in his stakes debut. Patrick Husbands, who has won Queen’s Plates with Lexie Lou and Wando, will ride He’s a Macho Man for the first time.

He’s a Macho Man’s interests had fifth pick and his owners announced their choice as post position eight.

“I think we ended up exactly where we wanted to be,” said Carroll.

Trainer Mike De Paulo and owner Rob Marzilli will be looking to become the first to capture the Queen’s Plate with a maiden since Scatter the Gold, with Moon Swings and Rising Star both seeking their initial victories.

Rising Star finished third and Moon Swings fourth in the Plate Trial. Their respective riders, Justin Stein and Jesse Campbell, have Queen’s Plate wins under their belts with Stein’s success coming with Strait of Dover in 2012 and Campbell’s with Midnight Aria the following year.

Krachenwagen and Jammin Still also raced in the Plate Trial, finishing fifth and seventh, respectively.

Owner/trainer Angus Buntain and jockey Jeffrey Alderson will be making their Queen’s Plate debuts with Krachenwagen. Alan Garcia regains the mount on Jammin Still for trainer Kevin Attard.

Lucas n’ Lori and Suitedconnected both enter the Queen’s Plate off fringe finishes in a 1 1/16-mile turf race and will be making their stakes debuts.

Canadian champion apprentice jockey Kazushi Kimura will be contesting his first Queen’s Plate aboard Lucas n’ Lori, who like Jammin Still is trained by Kevin Attard.

Gary Boulanger, winner of the Queen’s Plate with Dancethruthedawn, gets the call on Suitedconnected, the second career Queen’s Plate entrant for veteran conditioner Earl Barnett.

First race post time for Saturday’s action-packed program of Thoroughbred racing is 12 noon with the featured Queen’s Plate scheduled as Race 10 with a 5:36 p.m. post time. Live television coverage of the first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown from Woodbine Racetrack will air from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. ET on TSN and CTV.

The two-day Queen’s Plate Racing Festival, which includes live concerts by The Washboard Union and High Valley, along with renowned attractions, VIP parties and fabulous food, kicks off on Friday with first race post time set for 3:30 p.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

Jim Lawson, Woodbine Entertainment’s CEO, pictured with some of the Queen’s Plate jockeys at the post position draw for the 160th running of the Canadian classic at Woodbine Racetrack. L to R: Eurico Rosa Da Silva (Skywire), Kazushi Kimura (Lucas n’ Lori), Jeffrey Alderson (Krachenwagen), Steven Bahen (Desert Ride), Jim Lawson, Justin Stein (Rising Star), Rafael Hernandez (Pay for Peace), Alan Garcia (Jammin Still). (Michael Burns Photo)

Here is a look at the field for the 160th running of the Queen’s Plate in post position order:

$1 million Queen’s Plate

Post / Horse / Trainer / Owner / Jockey / Morning Line

1 / Desert Ride (filly) / Neil Howard / Sam-Son Farm / Steven Bahen / 8-1

2 / Moon Swings / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Jesse Campbell / 30-1

3 / Krachenwagen / Angus Buntain / Greenoaks Farm / Jeffrey Alderson / 50-1

4 / Pay for Peace / Rachel Halden / Team Penney Racing & Carem Stables / Rafael Hernandez / 15-1

5 / One Bad Boy / Richard Baltas / Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall & Brooke Hubbard / Flavien Prat / 7-2

6 / Lucas n’ Lori / Kevin Attard / Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman / Kazushi Kimura / 50-1

7 / Federal Law / Mark Casse / Qatar Racing Limited / Jamie Spencer / 15-1

8 / He’s a Macho Man / Josie Carroll / Di Scola Boys Stable / Patrick Husbands / 15-1

9 / Suitedconnected / Robert Earl Barnett / Joe Triumbari / Gary Boulanger / 50-1

10 / Skywire / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Lou Tucci / Eurico Rosa Da Silva / 4-1

11 / Tone Broke / Steve Asmussen / L and N Racing LLC / Luis Contreras / 6-1

12 / Jammin Still / Kevin Attard / Derek Chin / Alan Garcia / 30-1

13 / Rising Star / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Justin Stein / 30-1

14 / Avie’s Flatter / Josie Carroll / Ivan Dalos / Javier Castellano / 5-2


Horse / Trainer / Owner / Jockey

Avie’s Flatter / Josie Carroll / Ivan Dalos / Javier Castellano

Desert Ride (filly) / Neil Howard / Sam-Son Farm / Steven Bahen

Federal Law / Mark Casse / Qatar Racing Limited / Jamie Spencer

He’s a Macho Man / Josie Carroll / Di Scola Boys Stable / Patrick Husbands

Jammin Still / Kevin Attard / Derek Chin / Alan Garcia

Krachenwagen / Angus Buntain / Greenoaks Farm / Jeffrey Alderson

Lucas n’ Lori / Kevin Attard / Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman / Kazushi Kimura

Moon Swings / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Jesse Campbell

One Bad Boy / Richard Baltas / Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard / Flavien Prat

Pay for Peace / Rachel Halden / Team Penney Racing and Carem Stables / Rafael Hernandez

Rising Star / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Justin Stein

Skywire / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Lou Tucci / Eurico Rosa Da Silva

Suitedconnected / Robert Earl Barnett / Joe Triumbari / Gary Boulanger

Tone Broke / Steve Asmussen / L & N Racing LLC / Luis Contreras


TORONTO, June 25, 2019 – Tone Broke will attract plenty of attention on the strength of his last start, which came in the Sir Barton Stakes on the Preakness undercard and was won by King for A Day, who returned to take down disqualified Kentucky Derby winner Maximum Security in Monmouth’s Pegasus Stakes.

“I really think he could be a top racehorse,” said Michael Levinson, who is a partner in L and N Racing LLC and the racing manager for the outfit.

Bred in Ontario by Sean Fitzhenry, Tone Broke was a $40,000 yearling purchase at Keeneland. “At the time we weren’t really thinking much about the fact that he was Canadian-bred,” said Levinson.

The Broken Vow colt’s career began inauspiciously with fringe placings over one mile at Indiana Downs and Remington Park, both on “off” tracks. But Tone Broke took no prisoners in his next start at the Oklahoma oval, scoring by more than more than 15 lengths over the same distance on fast going.

After following up with a sharp score under first-level allowance terms at the same distance, Tone Broke made his stakes debut in the rich Springboard Mile. “He ran a really hard-closing fourth there and then we decided to give him a shot, and sent him over to Dubai.”

The United Arab Emirates Derby, a “win and you’re in” race for the Kentucky Derby, was Tone Broke’s ultimate target in the desert. But he did not make that big race after two lacklustre performances over the Meydan oval, both over 1 3/16 miles.

“We thought he might like the added distance over there,” said Levinson. “It just didn’t work out—I think those are just toss races. So we brought him back in, gave him some time after that trip, and sent him up to that Sir Barton and he ran a really, really nice race. We’d been looking at the Queen’s Plate for some time. After his last start, we just decided to lay him off, and just train up to the race. He should be fresh.”

Levinson is fairly confident that the Queen’s Plate distance will be within Tone Broke’s scope. “He looks like he wants to go longer,” said the racing manager. “He’s a big horse.”

He acknowledges that the Tapeta track is another story as the colt has never raced on and has yet to train on a synthetic strip. “That’s a little bit of a question mark for us, whether he’s going to take to that surface or not,” he said.


TORONTO, June 25, 2019 – For years, Derek Chin had hoped he’d one day have the opportunity to win the Queen’s Plate. On Saturday, the owner will get that chance when Jammin Still goes postward in the $1 million Canadian classic at Woodbine Racetrack.

The dark bay colt, trained by Kevin Attard, will be a longshot for the 160th edition of the Plate. But for the man who owns the Ontario-bred son of Take Charge Indy, having a horse in the big race is a dream come true.

“My dad was very involved in horse racing,” recalled Chin, who accompanied his father on visits to Trinidad’s racetracks nearly every weekend. “That experience, being around the horses and the racing, never leaves you. I was around 9 or 10 when I was first introduced to horse racing.”

During his schooling days in Canada, Chin, born in Guyana, but raised in Trinidad, would put studying on the shelf for a few hours on the weekend to take in the races at Woodbine.

And, just as he did in Trinidad, he stood as close to the action as possible.

“I went Trinity College in Port Hope and then I went to the University of Western Ontario in London,” noted Chin. “I lived in Toronto for about 15 years in the 70s and 80s.  When I was in university, I would always go to the racetrack and I enjoyed watching great jockeys like George Ho Sang and Sandy Hawley ride. I always looked at them from a distance because I was shy.”

Eventually, Chin, a successful businessman who founded MovieTowne in his native Trinidad, mustered up the courage to introduce himself to trainers and jockeys. The conversations and friendships forged would eventually lead him to become a Thoroughbred owner.

His biggest star to date is Trini Brewnette, a daughter of Milwaukee Brew who won at first asking in August 2015. The bay filly also took top honours in the South Ocean Stakes that same year, getting up to win by a nose.

Now, he’ll look to Jammin Still, bred by the late William Graham, to deliver his most memorable victory.

Queen’s Plate contender Jammin Still, with exercise rider Wayne Green, prepping for the first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown at Woodbine. (Michael Burns Photo)

“I love the racing in Canada,” said Chin. “I would love one day to win a big race and be able to say that I come from a small island in the Caribbean, but I’ve won against the biggest and the best. It would be a crowning achievement for me. My goal is to win the Queen’s Plate or a Woodbine Oaks one of these days. I dream like everyone else does.”

On Saturday, Jammin Still, a one-time winner from five starts, to be ridden by Alan Garcia, could make that dream a reality.

“Derek is a great owner and he’s supported me very well,” said Attard. “He’s ecstatic that he’s going to have some his family here, along with his friends, for the big day. He’s really looking forward to it and hopefully we can put some smiles on people’s faces.”


TORONTO, June 25, 2019 – Pink Scribbles goes after her first added-money win in Friday’s $100,000 Lady Angela Stakes, which kicks off the Queen’s Plate Festival, a two-day celebration of first-class horse racing, exceptional style, unique food and drink offerings and live music including concert headliner, JUNO Award-winning country music group The Washboard Union.

Trained by Katerina Vassilieva, Pink Scribbles arrives at the seven-furlong feature for Ontario-sired fillies off a thrilling maiden-breaking score on June 8.

The three-year-old daughter of Signature Red didn’t make the milestone moment easy on her connections.

At the wire, Pink Scribbles, who was eighth at the half-mile mark of the six-furlong race, rallied determinedly to prevail by a neck in a time of 1:11.79.

Despite the slim margin of victory, Vassilieva wasn’t complaining.

“That second-place horse (True Castle) was coming at us fast,” she recalled. “I’m glad we got to the wire first and didn’t have another second. She’s been a consistent horse. I knew it was just a matter of time before she finally got that win. We’re happy to have it.”

Owned by Stephen Chesney and Cory Hoffman, the bay, bred by Howard Walton, has one win, five seconds and a third from eight career starts.

Launching her career with a second-place finish over five furlongs on the Woodbine main track last August, Pink Scribbles hasn’t finished lower than fourth to date.

It was Pink Scribbles’ third start, at 6 1/2 furlongs over the Toronto oval Tapeta on October 13, which really caught the attention of her connections.

“It was a big field, 12 horses and we had post 12,” recalled Vassilieva. “We didn’t know what to expect. She broke a little bit outwards and there was a lot of traffic. But she weaved her way around everybody and came running at the end like she always does. She was third and didn’t get beat far. Right there, we thought, ‘Wow… she’s a trier.’ Everything could have stopped her, but she came running.”

Vassilieva is hoping Pink Scribbles has shed her penchant for runner-up finishes.

“Every time this horse runs, I expect a good effort out of her,” said the stakes winning conditioner. “She’s shown us she’s a trier. If she didn’t run well, I’d know something was wrong with her. She’s always trained with confidence and I definitely think she’ll improve off that last effort. We’ve always wanted to try her a little bit longer, but because of scheduling and different things we’ve always ended up running six furlongs. I’m happy with the stretch-out in distance because she likes to settle and come with a run.”

While she’s shown strong late brush time and again, there is one thing Pink Scribbles has no time for.

“She doesn’t like to be brushed, that’s her only real quirk. She gets a little bit feisty then. But she’s always been wise beyond her years, even when she was two.”

Last year, Fairy Hill ($8.60 to win) won the Lady Angela, with Jeffrey Alderson in the irons.

The Lady Angela is Race 3 on Friday’s eight-race card. First post time is 3:30 p.m.

Fans can also watch and wager on all the action via



1 – Brookies Bear – Luis Contreras – Ashlee Brnjas

2 – Sav – Jesse Campbell – Ricky Griffith

3 – Miss Ariel – Patrick Husbands – Tony Gattellaro

4 – Ciuri – Eurico Rosa Da Silva – Robert Tiller

5 – Pink Scribbles – Rafael Hernandez – Katerina Vassilieva


The post position draw for the 160th running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, will take place tomorrow morning (Wednesday, June 26) at 9:30 a.m. in the Trackside Clubhouse at Woodbine Racetrack.

Post positions for the field will be determined with the connections of the contenders first drawing their post selection order then proceeding to pick their post positions in the order determined by the draw.


The Queen’s Plate preview show with Brian Williams, Jim Bannon and Jason Portuondo will air on Thursday night (June 27) at 7:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on TSN.


The lucrative Queen’s Plate undercard will feature an abundance of stakes on Woodbine’s world-renowned E.P. Taylor Turf Course including the $300,000 Grade 1 Highlander Stakes for turf sprinters; the $175,000 Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes, a 1 1/4-mile turf test for fillies and mares; and the $175,000 Grade 2 King Edward Stakes for turf milers; the $100,000 Charlie Barley Stakes for three-year-olds over one mile; and the $100,000 Zadracarta Stakes for Ontario-bred filly and mare sprinters.

The Queen’s Plate Day wagering menu will feature a total of $700,000 in guaranteed Pick 4 and Pick 5 pools, including:

Early Pick 4: $200,000 Guaranteed

Late Pick 4: $300,000 Guaranteed

Early Pick 5: $100,000 Guaranteed

Late Pick 5: $100,000 Guaranteed


Horse / Trainer / Owner / Jockey

Avie’s Flatter / Josie Carroll / Ivan Dalos / Javier Castellano

Desert Ride (filly) / Neil Howard / Sam-Son Farm / Steven Bahen

Federal Law / Mark Casse / Qatar Racing Limited / Jamie Spencer

He’s a Macho Man / Josie Carroll / Di Scola Boys Stable / Patrick Husbands

Jammin Still / Kevin Attard / Derek Chin / Alan Garcia

Krachenwagen / Angus Buntain / Greenoaks Farm / Jeffrey Alderson

Lucas n’ Lori / Kevin Attard / Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman / Kazushi Kimura

Moon Swings / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Jesse Campbell

One Bad Boy / Richard Baltas / Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard / Flavien Prat

Pay for Peace / Rachel Halden / Team Penney Racing and Carem Stables / Rafael Hernandez

Rising Star / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Justin Stein

Skywire / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Lou Tucci / Eurico Rosa Da Silva

Suitedconnected / Robert Earl Barnett / Joe Triumbari / Gary Boulanger

Tone Broke / Steve Asmussen / L & N Racing LLC / Luis Contreras


By: Perry Lefko for Woodbine Communications

The Queen’s Plate is always a significant occasion for Woodbine Entertainment Chief Executive Officer Jim Lawson because of its rich history, but this year will be more than just ceremonial for him because of a horse that has ties to his family and to Queen Elizabeth II.

Federal Law, a horse Jim bred and then sold as a weanling, is scheduled to run in the million-dollar first leg of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown on June 29 for Qatar Racing Ltd. and trainer Mark Casse. The son of Scat Daddy placed second in the Plate Trial.

There is a lineage to the horse that traces back to Jim’s father, Mel, a member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame, who won numerous races, including more than 60 stakes under his Jim Dandy Stable, but the one that eluded him was the Plate. Exactly 35 years ago, Mel Lawson’s Let’s Go Blue lost the Plate in a controversial finish to Key to the Moon, in which the jockeys of the top-two finishers claimed foul on one another.

When his father passed away in 2011, a year after he was inducted into the Hall of Fame and his horse Destroy was voted Canada’s champion broodmare, Jim bought the yearling filly Gravelly Bay out of the family’s dispersal, primarily because he wanted to maintain an interest in the bloodlines.

“My father spent over 50 years in this business and this was the cornerstone of everything he did,” Jim said. “It stirs a lot sentimental feelings together with a sense of pride for everything my father accomplished to see Federal Law go into the Queen’s Plate. The (1984 Queen’s Plate) still has its wounds.”

Destroy was among the horses bought by others from the family dispersal. Destroy’s dam, Eternal Search, was one of Lawson’s greatest horses, winning 18 of 44 career races, including 15 stakes, and $642,177. She was voted Canadian Champion Sprinter in 1981 and Older Female Horse in 1982 and 1983.

Queen’s Plate contender Federal Law breezes under exercise rider Cassie Garcia at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

Gravelly Bay raced 10 times, posting a win, three seconds, two thirds and career earnings of $110,934. She was also stakes-placed. Seeing her value as a broodmare, Jim retired her and bred her to Blame, producing a colt, Burnindownthehighway, whom he sold, because he wanted to concentrate on his broodmare band and his philosophy of breeding to sell. The second foal, a filly by Arch, died.

Her third foal was Federal Law, and Jim sold her privately as a weanling.

“I did fine for a four-month-old foal,” he said. “I had the comfort to sell because I still owned the mare. However, as people in this business appreciate, many things can go wrong and shortly thereafter, Gravelly Bay died from an infection.”

Federal Law was subsequently pin hooked in Europe and purchased by Qatar Racing Ltd., the nom de plume of Sheikh Fahad, for more than 400,000 euros. Qatar races horses all over the world and have won numerous Group 1 or Grade 1 races.

Desperate to keep the family bloodline going, Jim tracked down Destroy, who was originally scheduled to be sold following the death of Nancy Polk, owner of Normandy Farms, who had originally purchased the mare from the Mel Lawson estate. When the mare was pulled from the sale, Jim bought her privately this past January.

“Normally I wouldn’t purchase an aging mare, but it meant so much to me to keep the lineage going,” he said.

Destroy’s first foal was Search the Church, who won three of 23 career starts, more than $250,000 and was also graded stakes-placed. Some of Destroy’s other foals include: Smokey Fire, who won eight of 17 races and more than $700,000; and Ghost Fleet, who won three of 10 career races and more than $280,000. Ghost Fleet ran in the 2010 Plate, the last time Queen Elizabeth II attended the race.

“She knew about Destroy, that’s what a student of the game Queen Elizabeth is,” Jim said. “I was in our Northern Dancer Room at Woodbine and the Queen came right over to me and she said, ‘I know the story behind this horse Ghost Fleet and that your dad has bred champions and this is a great family.’ She wanted to know all about it and it was just fascinating to me that Queen Elizabeth would know a fair amount about this family and wanted to discuss the full history of it. When it comes to horses she just lets her hair down and talks like any passionate horse person. Her horse racing knowledge is superior yet her interest and education in pedigrees is striking – it was an eye-opener for me.

“I’d be excited to see Federal Law run well, for sure. Whether that would be first, second or third, I don’t know. I’d be very happy for Qatar Racing and for Mark Casse. The Plate Trial will have done the horse a world of good.”

Jim Lawson, Woodbine Entertainment’s CEO, pictured right of The Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, congratulating the winning connections of 2018 Queen’s Plate champion Wonder Gadot in the winner’s circle last June at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

Theoretically Jim could be in the winner’s circle presenting the trophy to the connections of the horse he bred. It would make for a great sidebar. It would also help from a commercial standpoint because he owns Destroy.

“It’s not about the commercial value for me because the family is already so strong,” he said. “It has everything to do with the family history in the thoroughbred business and the legacy left by the foundation mare, Eternal Search.”

Destroy has produced a foal, a weanling whom Jim named “Mrs. Barbara,” the name Mel Lawson affectionately used to refer to his wife.

“Fortunately, I now have Destroy’s filly by Bodemeister and I’m excited that these bloodlines will keep going,” he said. “This is one of the great Canadian thoroughbred families that will have a continuing impact on international horse racing.”


TORONTO, June 24, 2019 – Queen’s Plate hopeful Krachenwagen was named by owner/trainer Angus Buntain’s 14-year-old daughter Libby after a bumper car ride at nearby theme park Canada’s Wonderland.

“I asked her to name him,” said Buntain, whose nom du course is Greenoaks Farm Racing Stable. “I said he needed a tough name, because his father’s name is Head Chopper. She said Krachenwagen sounded like crackin’ heads.”

On Saturday, Krachenwagen will be looking to give Buntain the thrill of a lifetime with his first starter in the $1 million Queen’s Plate, the 1-1/4-mile race for Canadian-bred three-year-olds which will be run for the 160th time.

And, the fact that the distance of the Queen’s Plate may turn out to be Krachenwagen’s hole card is somewhat ironic considering Buntain’s assessment of his colt’s conformation and pedigree.

“Krachenwagen is built a lot like a sprinter,” said Buntain. “He’s an average-size horse that’s very rugged and strong, muscular. He doesn’t look like your classic Plate horse—a nice lean, long-legged, long-striding type.

“But, he wants to go a route of ground. And he does have a wide-sprung rib cage, which I think helps. Looking at him, and looking at the family, I never dreamt he’d go a mile and a quarter.

“It’s hard to find a horse that actually wants to go that kind of distance of ground. I know that he’s improving, and I really feel that this is my chance to have a horse in the Plate that should actually get involved.”

Queen’s Plate contender Krachenwagen and jockey Jeffrey Alderson at Woodbine. (Michael Burns Photo)

Buntain believes that Krachenwagen lived up to his moniker last season, when he made four starts in six weeks after debuting on October 19.

“He showed me a lot of toughness with those races all jammed up,” said Buntain. “You normally wouldn’t do that to a two-year-old, but he comes out of his races really well, not all sore or anything, and he rebounds well.”

Debuting over five furlongs here last fall, Krachenwagen had rallied from mid-pack to record a going-away 4-3/4-length victory.

“I expected him to run well, but I never expected him to win,” said Buntain.

Krachenwagen actually had been slated to debut two weeks earlier but a minor issue scuttled that plan. Buntain had inked in the Frost King Stakes as the gelding’s main juvenile target and, although the timing was not the best, Krachenwagen finished a good third in the seven-furlong Frost King.

But, Krachenwagen came out of the Frost King a little under the weather. “He wasn’t sick for long,” said Buntain. “He recovered quickly.”

Krachenwagen wintered at the nearby Empress Farm of trainer Steve Owens, where farm manager John Breeze oversaw his development.

“He really grew over the winter time,” said Buntain. “He put on 250 pounds, and he just blossomed. He came out of that place looking great. I’m really happy with how he arrived back in on March 1.”

The gelding returned with a fifth-place finish at seven furlongs here on May 20.

“I knew he was going to be short to some degree, but I wanted to use that race to launch him into a 1-1/16-mile race,” said Buntain.

That first two-turn test came on May 20, when Krachenwagen finished third behind a pair of older horses. “He ran good enough to give me some hope for the Plate Trial,” said Buntain.

Krachenwagen finished fifth in the Plate Trial following a troubled trip.

“I was really happy with him,” said Buntain. “He rated kindly, the whole way. He got a bit jammed up going into the far turn, and he was being hemmed in on the outside. He finally found some room down toward the inside. Once he did find the hole, and the rider asked him, he really did respond for another eighth of a mile. He found another gear.”

Jeffrey Alderson, Krachenwagen’s only race rider to date, will be making his Queen’s Plate debut.


The Queen’s Plate Racing Festival kicks off on Friday, June 28 at 3 p.m. when the gates open to the Hats & Horseshoes Party presented by Stella Artois, followed by first race post time at 3:30 p.m. Gates open on Saturday, June 29 at 11 a.m., with first race post time set for 12 noon. Post time for the 160th edition of the Queen’s Plate is scheduled for 5:36 p.m. ET.


Horse / Trainer / Owner / Jockey

Avie’s Flatter / Josie Carroll / Ivan Dalos / Javier Castellano

Desert Ride (filly) / Neil Howard / Sam-Son Farm / Steven Bahen

Federal Law / Mark Casse / Qatar Racing Limited / Jamie Spencer

He’s a Macho Man / Josie Carroll / Di Scola Boys Stable / Patrick Husbands

Jammin Still / Kevin Attard / Derek Chin / Alan Garcia

Krachenwagen / Angus Buntain / Greenoaks Farm / Jeffrey Alderson

Lucas n’ Lori / Kevin Attard / Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman / Kazushi Kimura

Moon Swings / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Jesse Campbell

One Bad Boy / Richard Baltas / Sayjay Racing LLC, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard / Flavien Prat

Pay for Peace / Rachel Halden / Team Penney Racing and Carem Stables / Rafael Hernandez

Rising Star / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Justin Stein

Skywire / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Lou Tucci / Eurico Rosa Da Silva

Suitedconnected / Robert Earl Barnett / Joe Triumbari / Gary Boulanger

Tone Broke / Steve Asmussen / L & N Racing LLC / Luis Contreras


TORONTO, June 23, 2019 –Three weeks after a stirring stretch run to take the Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser, Sam-Son Farm standout filly Desert Ride looks for another crowning moment, this time in the Queen’s Plate.

Tenth and last at the quarter-mile mark in the 1 1/8-mile Oaks, eighth at the half and sixth at the stretch call, jockey Steve Bahen and Desert Ride were full of run, but had plenty left to do to catch the front-runners. In the final yards, the daughter of Candy Ride eked out a neck victory at 8-1.

“That’s kind of been her a bit,” said Howard, who has trained over 1,200 winners in his distinguished career. “That’s been her running style. She likes to get her feet under her a little bit. I was so happy to have that mile-and-an-eighth for her. I didn’t think she was going to get there, but going past the 3 /16ths pole, you had that relieved feeling that she was running well and going to finish well. As tough as these races are – you always want to win – as long as they run well and come back good, you have to be satisfied with that. Winning is a bonus.”

But her thrill ride may not yet be over. There’s the matter of the $1 million Canadian classic set for June 29 at Woodbine.

You can count trainer Neil Howard as a big fan of the bay filly, not just for her impressive Oaks performance, but also for the mind she possesses.

“She is a charm,” he praised. “She’s so straightforward and I was telling everyone with Sam-Son, she just does not concern herself with anything. She has a wonderful mind. Good horses, most of the time, they have that good demeanour. And she certainly does. It just makes everything so much better.”

Desert Ride eyes the Oaks-Plate double. (Michael Burns Photo)

With less than a month between her last race and the Plate, along with traveling 1-1/4 miles, notching an Oaks-Plate exactor is hardly an easy task.

But, as Holy Helena (2017), Lexie Lou (2014) and Inglorious (2011) has recently showed, it can certainly be done.

Sporting a record of three wins and one second from four lifetime starts, Desert Ride will try to follow in the hoofsteps of Sam-Son standout fillies Dance Smartly (1991 Plate champ) and Dancethruthedawn (2001 Plate winner).

Howard would love nothing more than to provide Sam-Son with its sixth Plate victory, the latest coming in 2009 with Eye of the Leopard.

“I’ve always loved Woodbine and for me, I’ve been very fortunate – and I know I am to have worked with so great people. To work with Sam-Son, I can’t even describe how much of a privilege it is and what a delight it is. I work them more on a seasonal basis, but that doesn’t matter. They are really excellent people. It’s also nice when you work for great people who have a complete understanding of what we’re doing.”

Howard, who was the trainer of 2003 Horse of the Year Mineshaft and 1990 Preakness winner Summer Squall, is pleased with how Desert Ride is doing ahead of the 160th running of the Plate.

“She’s doing really well. The timing isn’t great – anybody would say that – but Desert Ride is herself. She couldn’t be doing any better.”


TORONTO, June 23, 2019 – Trained by Richard Baltas, One Bad Boy has made all his starts in California to date. Now, the son of Twirling Candy brings his Golden State credentials to Canada’s Showplace of Racing for the $1 million Queen’s Plate.

With a record of 1-2-1 from four races, the dark bay, bred by Ron Clarkson, has shown strong form ahead of his most high-profile start.

In February, One Bad Boy finished second to the highly regarded Omaha Beach, winner of the 2019 Arkansas Derby and Rebel Stakes.

Just over a month ago, One Bad Boy contested the $75,000 Alcatraz Stakes at Golden Gate Fields. Leading by a half-length at the stretch call of the one-mile event (taken off the turf and run on the all-weather track), the Ontario-bred finished a game second.

“I thought he ran a great race when he finished second in the stake,” offered Baltas. “He kind of hooked a fast pace, but he just got caught at the wire. It was a really strong effort. Since that race, we removed the blinkers, and he’s trained really well without them. Now that he’s going a mile-and-a-quarter, I don’t think he needs to show a ton of speed.”

After a third in his career bow last year on Boxing Day, One Bad Boy, owned by Sayjay Racing, Greg Hall and Brooke Hubbard, finished runner-up to the aforementioned Omaha Beach.

In his third start, a one-mile trip over the Santa Anita turf, the ridgling, sent off as the even-money favourite, broke his maiden courtesy of a 4 1/4-length victory over ‘firm’ going.

Queen’s Plate contender One Bad Boy, with exercise rider Calvin Giles, on track at Woodbine. (Michael Burns Photo)

He’ll now look to deliver his connections a win in Canada’s most famous horse race.

“I know this is a big race in Canada,” said Baltas. “He’s an Ontario-bred – I also have his half-sister, Miss Bad Behavior, also an Ontario-bred who is a stakes winner (2018 China Doll Stakes) – so this is a great race for him.”

Flavien Prat, who won the 2019 Kentucky Derby with Country House, gets the call for the Plate. The 26-year-old French-born rider was aboard for the Alcatraz effort.


Horse / Trainer / Owner / Jockey

Avie’s Flatter / Josie Carroll / Ivan Dalos / Javier Castellano

Desert Ride (filly) / Neil Howard / Sam-Son Farm / Steven Bahen

Federal Law / Mark Casse / Qatar Racing Limited / Jamie Spencer

He’s a Macho Man / Josie Carroll / Di Scola Boys Stable / Patrick Husbands

Jammin Still / Kevin Attard / Derek Chin / Alan Garcia

Krachenwagen / Angus Buntain / Greenoaks Farm / Jeffrey Alderson

Lucas n’ Lori / Kevin Attard / Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman / Kazushi Kimura

Moon Swings / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Jesse Campbell

One Bad Boy / Richard Baltas / Sayjay Racing LLC / Flavien Prat

Pay for Peace / Rachel Halden / Team Penney Racing and Carem Stables / Rafael Hernandez

Rising Star / Michael De Paulo / Zilli Racing Stables / Justin Stein

Skywire / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Lou Tucci / Eurico Rosa Da Silva

Suitedconnected / Robert Earl Barnett / Joe Triumbari / Gary Boulanger

Tone Broke / Steve Asmussen / L & N Racing LLC / Luis Contreras


TORONTO, June 22, 2019 – Seventeen years ago, T J’s Lucky Moon pulled off an 82-1 Queen’s Plate shocker. Can Lucas n’ Lori deliver another longshot score in next Saturday’s $1 million Canadian classic?

It was 2002 when Molinaro Stables’ T J Lucky Moon, under Steve Bahen, lit up the toteboard in the 143rd running of the Plate. In just over a week, a one-time winner will endeavour to duplicate those very same underdog exploits.

Owned by Lori Cirillo and Kelly Waxman, Lucas n’ Lori will make his stakes debut in the 1 1/4-mile ‘Gallop for the Guineas.’

The enormity of the task isn’t lost on Kevin Attard. But the finalist for the 2018 Sovereign Award as Canada’s outstanding trainer isn’t about to concede defeat before the gates open on the 160th edition of the Plate.

“On Plate day, there are so many elements that go into the race, other than the race itself,” said Attard. “You have to be able to handle the crowd, you have to be able to handle the weather, the long post parade – those are some of the factors that can weigh in on that day for the horse. Hopefully, he’s a horse that can take that all in. You always need a little racing luck on your side, so hopefully he has it on that day.”

Queen’s Plate contender Lucas n’ Lori prepping at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

What’s in a name? Co-owner, 15-year-old Lori Cirillo, has the answer.

“Kelly (co-owner, Waxman) has a son named Lucas,” Cirillo said of the wife of prominent Standardbred breeder/owner Aaron Waxman. “And I’m obviously Lori. We wanted to name it after the two kids. If we ever get the chance to own a filly, we’re going to name it Lori n’ Lucas.”

Bred by Silver Springs Stud LLC and Garry Parr, Lucas n’ Lori launched his career on September 1, 2018. He finished second in his debut, one length back of the winner. After a fourth and another runner-up effort, the chestnut broke his maiden via a 2 1/4-length triumph at 1 1/16 miles over the Woodbine main track on November 30.

Lucas n’ Lori comes into the Plate with one win and a pair of seconds from six lifetime starts.

“He’s going to be a longshot,” noted Attard. “But I don’t think the distance will be a problem, so that’s a big positive. He’s been a handy horse to have. This is going to be asking a lot of him, but on any given day, any horse can step up under the right circumstances.”

Attard is hoping that moment comes on a stakes-filled Saturday card on June 29.

“Mentally, he’s starting to come around. It’s a big jump up, but it’s a mile-and-a-quarter, and there are a lot of horses that don’t want to go that far. Hopefully, he’s one that does. I suppose you can view it as, ‘Go big or go home.’ When you have a three-year-old Canadian-bred, a lot of people are dreaming and hoping. That’s why they get into this great sport. My job is to prepare this horse the best I can and hopefully he’s good enough.”

For Cirillo, it’s a dream come true.

“I’ve gone to the Queen’s Plate for years and I just love watching it,” said the daughter of long-time horse owner Frank Cirillo. “To know that I’m going to have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity at this young age is just incredible. I’m so happy about it.”

“I am very excited to have a horse in the Queen’s Plate, and from what I know, we should be a longshot, so we will be able to enjoy the day with very little pressure and take in the great event,” said Waxman. “Hopefully we can surprise some people, including ourselves!

“The horse is named after my first-born son (and Frank Cirillo’s daughter Lori) who is two now and he’s very fast and surprises me a lot, so hopefully Lucas n’ Lori shares those traits on Plate day! We seem to have lots of luck when we are the underdog and some disappointments when we are favourite so I’m content with our role coming into the race.”

Kazushi Kimura, the 2018 Sovereign Award recipient as Canada’s top apprentice, gets the call for the Plate.

The native of Japan finished last season – his first Woodbine campaign – sixth in the jockey standings with 89 wins and more than $2.3 million in purse earnings.


By: Hayley Morrison for Woodbine Communications

Woodbine-based trainer Mike De Paulo has two chances to clinch this year’s $1-million Queen’s Plate, but there is one catch.

Both of his contenders, Rising Star and Moon Swings, have yet to win a race.

Despite that fact, De Paulo has faith in both his runners. Especially given their respective performances on June 8 in the Plate Trial, the final prep race for the Queen’s Plate.

“They both ran together last time and they were fairly close at the end. They finished third and fourth. I don’t know if you are a Ragozin believer or not, but Moon Swings ran an 11 Ragozin and the lower the number the better, running fourth. And Rising Star ran a 12 Ragozin. Ragozin (number) takes into account where you are on the track, how much weight you carry and all that. So number-wise, Moon Swings actually ran faster. Rising Star got bumped a little down the backstretch, bounced off the rail a little and it probably cost us a position for sure and he seemed to be gaining on the winner.”

Can a horse that’s never won a race finally do it in a historic race like the Queen’s Plate?

If the history books could speak, they would say yes. Not a yes solely based on merit, but more so on the restrictions and format of the early editions of the race.

As a matter of fact, Louis Cauz points out in his book, The Plate: A Royal Tradition, that when the Queen’s Plate was created, “among the more practical encouragements given to horsemen with the royal gift of fifty guineas from Queen Victoria was the fact that the Plate would be contested by horses bred in Ontario which had never won a race, a condition that gave the sporting farmer an equal chance with wealthy stud owners.”

In 1868, eight years after the Plate’s inception, Cauz also notes that “horses were ineligible which had won a stakes on the flat at a public race meeting where money was awarded.”

Some racing forms even make mention of it being a maiden-based race at one point.

For example, in 1889 the racing form specifically stipulated within the Queen’s Plate racing conditions: For all aged maidens, owned, bred and raised and trained in the Province of Ontario (Cauz, p. 75).

In 1887, Bonnie Duke became the first maiden to win the Queen’s Plate going the current distance of a mile-and-a-quarter. Originally, when the Plate was first conceived it was run as a set of one-mile heats (between 1860 to 1867) with the best finisher of those several heats pocketing 50 guineas. After 1867, the distance changed to a dash of two miles (1868-1870), then a mile and three-quarters (1871), before changing to a mile and a half for the next 15 years.

A few other fun facts to be duly noted are that two unraced fillies, named Kitestring and Butter Scotch, managed to fly home with the guineas in 1890 and in 1899, respectively.

Obviously, when it comes to a race like the Queen’s Plate, one that spans neatly over a century, there’s a lot of ground to cover. Some of the basic facts go as follows:

The purse money has significantly increased over the years.

From 1939 onwards, only Canadian-bred three-year-olds have been eligible to compete for the Plate.

In 1957, a 1-1/4 mile became the official distance for the race.

In several editions throughout the years, the Plate was also known as the King’s Plate (between 1902-1909 and then from 1911-1951) – but that’s another story to save for a rainy day read.

Whether the Plate was run at different locations or at various distances, history shows that the prestigious race was once only open to horses that had never won public prize money or won a race prior to competing in the Plate. Therefore, it would appear that back in the day maidens were given more than equal opportunity to secure the big race.

The only maiden to be snubbed of that chance was Fred Henry, who according to Cauz, ran in the Plate a whopping five times between 1884 and 1889. He was a runner-up in the 1885, 1886 and 1887 instalment of the race.

On Woodbine’s backstretch, asking people to recall maidens that have won the Plate, two names popped up: Willie the Kid, the 1940 Plate winner, and Golden Choice, the 1986 Plate winner.

However, the most prominent name that came to mind was Scatter the Gold. The Sam-Son owned and bred horse was the last (or most recent) maiden to win the race back in the 2000 edition of the Plate.

Although it’s been nearly two decades since a maiden has reigned triumphant in the race, De Paulo has noted something special about his trainee Rising Star. The son of Ghostzapper (out of Purple Trillium) was purchased earlier this year for owner Robert Marzilli.

Rising Star prepping for the Queen’s Plate at Woodbine. (Michael Burns Photo)

“We had this horse’s half-brother, Seeking Albert, who was a real stayer. And we are thinking this horse is maybe a little like that. I’m actually really looking forward to getting him on the grass at some point too.”

Seeking Albert did not run in the Queen’s Plate, but ended up running fourth in the 2017 Breeders’ Stakes, the third leg of the Canadian Triple Crown. Unlike the Queen’s Plate, which covers about 10 furlongs (1-1/4 mile) over the main Tapeta track, the Breeders’ Stakes asks horse and rider to go 12 furlongs (or 1-1/2 miles) over the turf course.

De Paulo’s confidence in Rising Star may also stem from the fact that his sire, Ghostzapper, has produced both the 2015 Queen’s Plate winner Shaman Ghost as well as the 2017 winner Holy Helena.

Aside from his substantial family lineage, Rising Star’s strong closing third in the 1-1/8-mile Plate Trial has also provided some encouragement for De Paulo.

“It appears that Rising Star is sort of a galloper, like he just kind of keeps coming. I suppose I’m more confident of him getting the 1-1/4-mile than the other horse.”

Jockey Justin Stein, who returned to race riding earlier this season and rode Rising Star in the Trial, will again have the leg up on the colt for the 160th edition of the Queen’s Plate.

De Paulo has assigned jockey Jesse Campbell to pilot the other horse known as Moon Swings.

The cheeky chestnut gelding owned by Marzilli has mounted a pretty successful racing campaign thus far; posting several third-place finishes to Queen’s Plate winterbook favourite and Ivan Dalos’ homebred Avie’s Flatter.

“Anytime you see a picture of Ivan Dalos’ horse, you see Moon Swings in the background. He was third to him in the Coronation Futurity and the Cup and Saucer Stakes. He’s always showed a bit of ability. We recently gelded him for his last start. Jesse (Campbell) always thought there was a little more and he just hadn’t given it to us. We are hoping that with a little more time passing that that’s going to set him on sort of a more positive attitude.”

Queen’s Plate hopeful Moon Swings on track at Woodbine. (Michael Burns Photo)

De Paulo does admit that Moon Swings has been kind of tricky to train and then watch run in the afternoon.

“I’m also hoping (Moon Swings) just wakes up one day and puts it all together and gives the effort that the jock seem to say he has. People breeze him in the morning and say, ‘wow.’ For whatever reason, he is not showing as much in the afternoons and he does in the mornings.”

Campbell echoes similar sentiments, remaining puzzled about the gelding’s somewhat lacklustre performance come race day.

“In the morning he shows me gears. He’ll get down and really fire home and I have yet to see that in a race. There’s been a handful of times in a race, I feel like he is going to give it to me, but he just doesn’t for whatever reason, I don’t know. It’s kind of one of those things, you wish they could talk.”

However, the seasoned jock does believe that gelding the chestnut son of Malibu Moon might make a difference.

“I don’t know if we’ve necessarily seen the full effects of gelding him quite yet. So I’m hopeful that with a little bit more time that will help in the race. I’m not concerned about the distance. Honestly to date, you could say maybe the talent is not quite there. But I’ve really expected this horse to be further along in his career than what he is. I truly believe he is better than what he’s shown.”

Greatly anticipating whether the chestnut gelding will swing into action or the bay colt will rise to the top, their owner, Marzilli, is still more than pleased with both trainees so far.

“I think they are both talented horses. Moon Swings has never won a race yet, but he’s been in some of the top races last year for the two-year-olds and always sort of made it in the money. Rising Star in the Plate Trial run…he came strong at the end, so I think going a 1-1/4-mile he might have a good chance of hitting the board,” said Marzilli, whose been in the racing game for the last five years or so.

Partnering with De Paulo over that period of time, Marzilli has visited the winner’s circle on various occasions with champs such as Caren and most recently multiple Grade 3 stakes winner Code Warrior.

To date, the Queen’s Plate is still one race that has eluded his grasp.

What would it mean to Marzilli to capture the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America?

“I mean it would be outstanding, obviously. I actually promised one of my friends, he’s an older gentleman, and I said before he croaks hopefully we will win the Plate. I’ve got to basically own up to what I say, so I’m hoping one day we’ll win it.”

It’s ambitious and maybe even a ‘swashbuckling’ endeavour for a maiden to win the Plate these days, but according to the history books, it has happened.

More importantly, as any good racing fan knows, once the gates fly open, anything can happen. History is simply just waiting in the wings, eager and ready to crown their next four-legged hero.