Woodbine unveils updated 2021 Thoroughbred stakes schedule

Queen’s Plate remains scheduled for Sunday, August 22

TORONTO, May 28, 2021 – Woodbine Entertainment today unveiled its updated stakes schedule for the 2021 Thoroughbred racing season at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario.

The commencement of the 2021 Thoroughbred season, originally scheduled for April 17, at Woodbine Racetrack has been delayed due to COVID-19 restrictions in the province of Ontario. Based on recent Government announcements, Woodbine Entertainment is targeting June 18 as a start date for the Thoroughbred season, with the possibility of the start date occurring earlier.

The lucrative 2021 Thoroughbred stakes program offers more than $16.5 million in stakes purses, 39 graded stakes and two $1 million classics, The Queen’s Plate and Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Grade 1).

The delayed start of the 2021 Thoroughbred season has forced Woodbine Entertainment to restructure the dates for the majority of its stakes races. Despite the delay, Woodbine was able to maintain the original dates for most of its marquee races.

“We are pleased that we were able to avoid major changes to our stakes schedule, setting up for an exciting 2021 Thoroughbred season at Woodbine,” said Jim Lawson, CEO, Woodbine Entertainment. “As a result if the delayed start, we expect our season to start strong and build momentum as it heads into the summer with The Queen’s Plate and its prep races, followed by a really exciting stakes schedule in the fall, including an unprecedented Ricoh Woodbine Mile weekend that includes two other Breeders’ Cup ‘Win and You’re In’ races, and the return of the Pattison Canadian International.”

The Queen’s Plate remains on its original date of Sunday, August 22, with this year’s running marking the 162nd edition of the iconic race. The Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Grade 1), a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” race, returning $600,000 Pattison Canadian International (Grade 1) and $250,000 Canadian Stakes (Grade 2) will be contested on Saturday, September 18. The Natalma (Grade 1) and Summer (Grade 1), each with boosted purses of $400,000 and part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series, will run on Sunday, September 19. The $600,000 E.P. Taylor Stakes (Grade 1) and $250,000 Nearctic Stakes (Grade 2) remain slated for Sunday, October 17 and will be contested on the world-renowned mile and a half E.P. Taylor Turf Course.

With most marquee events remaining untouched on the schedule, the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks Presented by Budweiser and $150,000 Plate Trial, a key prep race for the Queen’s Plate, have been moved back a week from Sunday, July 25 to Sunday, August 1.

The dates for the Canadian Triple Crown legs remain intact, with the $1 million Queen’s Plate on August 22, $400,000 Prince of Wales at Fort Erie on September 14 and $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes on October 3.

Throughout the recent shutdown of racing in Ontario, Woodbine Entertainment has remained committed to offering as much of its 2021 stakes program as possible through rescheduling and strategic planning. The majority of Woodbine’s original stakes schedule has received a facelift to accommodate the new starting date and racing opportunities.

The entire updated 2021 Thoroughbred stakes schedule can be viewed here.

Earlier this year, Woodbine Entertainment announced all Grade 3 stakes would receive a purse increase of 20 per cent, while Listed races would be boosted from $100,000 to $125,000. This announcement was made in conjunction with news of the returning Pattison Canadian International and purse increases for the $400,000 Natalma Stakes (Grade 1), $400,000 Summer Stakes (Grade 1) and $350,000 Highlander Stakes (Grade 1).

TORONTO, January 12, 2021 – Woodbine Entertainment announced today that the 162nd  running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing, will be held on Sunday, August 22, 2021 at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto.

Contested annually to showcase Canada’s finest three-year-old Thoroughbreds, The Queen’s Plate is one of the country’s premier sporting events and North America’s oldest continuously run stakes race.

Held at the end of June in past years, The Queen’s Plate was moved to late summer in 2020 and run on September 12 without spectators due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the spectator restrictions, the beloved one-eyed champion Mighty Heart captured the hearts of sports fans across the nation that tuned in via an engaging Queen’s Plate at Home digital experience. The historic 2020 Queen’s Plate produced the third highest wagering handle in its history.

“While it is clear the impact of COVID-19 will continue to be felt into the new year, we are optimistic that this timing for The Queen’s Plate could give us the best opportunity to welcome guests back at Woodbine Racetrack for the most exciting event on the Canadian horse racing calendar,” said Jim Lawson, President and CEO of Woodbine Entertainment. “We look forward to the 2021 racing season and the opportunity to restore The Queen’s Plate as one of the top social events in Toronto.”

Details regarding attendance and ticket sales will be announced in the coming months, along with Woodbine’s full Thoroughbred stakes schedule for the 2021 meet, which is expected to begin on Saturday, April 17.

“Woodbine has successfully demonstrated our commitment to the health and safety of our staff, participants and guests throughout these unprecedented times,” said Lawson. “We will continue to practice our industry-leading guidelines and entertainment offerings to ensure another world-class Queen’s Plate experience in 2021.”

Nominations for the Canadian Triple Crown are due Monday, February 1, 2021.

Visit Woodbine.com and follow @WoodbineTB on social media for more information and the latest #QueensPlate updates.

TORONTO, September 28, 2020 – Queen’s Plate winner Mighty Heart will continue his pursuit of the prestigious OLG Canadian Triple Crown when he takes on eight contenders at Fort Erie Race Track in the 85th Prince of Wales Stakes, on Tuesday, September 29.

After a dominating 7 ½-length triumph in the Queen’s Plate, Mighty Heart, bred and owned by Lawrence Cordes, and trained by Canadian Hall of Fame inductee Josie Carroll, will look to continue his winning ways in the $400,000 Prince of Wales, second jewel in the OLG Canadian Triple Crown. On Friday, he was installed as the 7-5 morning line favourite.

Daisuke Fukumoto, who rode the one-eyed Ontario-bred to his stirring Plate score, is back in the irons for Tuesday’s engagement for Canadian-bred three-year-olds, set for 1 3/16 miles on the Fort Erie dirt surface. Carroll, who won the 2006 Plate with Edenwold and the 2011 edition with the filly Inglorious, won the 2016 running of the Prince of Wales with Amis Gizmo.

Mighty Heart, who will leave from post two, faces Plate rivals Clayton (third in the Plate), Dotted Line (seventh), Tecumseh’s War (fourth), and Truebelieve (ninth), as well as Bold Victory, Enchant Me, Muskoka Giant, and Red Victory.

Some of the sport’s top experts have delivered their picks (see below) that comprise the Prince of Wales Power Rankings presented by the OLG Canadian Triple Crown. The Power Rankings spotlight top contenders as voted on by expert horseplayers and racing commentators from Woodbine Racetrack and Fort Erie Race Track, including Jeff BrattRobert GellerAshley MaillouxDoug McPhersonJason Portuondo and Monique Vag. The rankings are based on votes following a 5-4-3-2-1 points system for the top five selections.

Should Mighty Heart, whose Plate time of 2:01.98 was the second fastest Plate run since 1957, emerge victorious in the Prince of Wales, it could set up a possible date in the starting gate for the $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes, third and final jewel in the Triple Crown Series, set for 1 ½ miles on the world renowned E.P. Taylor Turf Course, October 24 at Woodbine.

The last horse to sweep all three races was Wando in 2003. Bred and owned by the late Gus Schickedanz, and trained by Mike Keogh, the son of Langfuhr garnered front-page coverage in the lead-up and aftermath of his Triple Crown quest.

First race post time on September 29 is 2:10 p.m., with the Prince of Wales scheduled for approximately 5:37 p.m. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Fort Erie Race Track will be closed to spectators. Fans can watch online or tune in to the Canadian Triple Crown broadcast, sponsored by OLG, beginning at 5:00 p.m. on TSN.


Post – Horse – Trainer – Jockey – Morning Line Odds

1 – Truebelieve – Cole Bennett – Keveh Nicholls – 30-1

2 – Mighty Heart – Josie Carroll – Daisuke Fukumoto – 7-5

3 – Dotted Line – Sid Attard – Justin Stein – 8-1

4 – Red Mercury – Paul Lepiane – Simon Husbands – 30-1

5 – Enchant Me – Santino Di Paola – Luis Contreras – 20-1

6 – Bold Victory – Mark Casse – Patrick Husbands – 12-1

7 – Tecumseh’s War – Catherine Day Phillips – Emma-Jayne Wilson – 4-1

8 – Muskoka Giant – Mark Casse – Kazushi Kimura – 12-1

9 – Clayton – Kevin Attard – Rafael Hernandez – 5-2


Horse – Trainer – Points – First-Place Votes

1 Mighty Heart – Josie Carroll – 27 – 4

2 Clayton – Kevin Attard – 23 – 1

3 Tecumseh’s War – Catherine Day Phillips – 18 – 1

4 Dotted Line – Sid Attard – 14 – 0

5 Muskoka Giant – Mark Casse – 4 – 0

TORONTO, September 12, 2020 – Mighty Heart and jockey Daisuke Fukumoto won the 161st running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, on Saturday at Woodbine Racetrack.

The one-eyed Dramedy-Emma’s Bullseye colt is trained by Josie Carroll for owner/breeder Lawrence Cordes.

Top three finishers: Mighty Heart-Belichick-Clayton

Final time: 2:01.98

Josie Carroll, trainer of Mighty Heart

Mighty Heart, what a performance. Led the whole way. What did you think?

Josie Carroll (JC): “I was concerned for a minute or two with the quick fractions but he looked like he was settling and doing it easily. We knew he’d go all day and he sure did.”

This horse has captured the imagination of racing fans because of his handicap with the one eye. Tell us what that means.

JC: “You know what, he’s just a very exciting horse who’s come a long way for Mr. Cordes, who’s had a lot of confidence in him from the start.”

What does this mean for the connections of this horse?

JC: “This is a big, big day for them. I’m very happy for them.”

Daisuke Fukumoto, jockey aboard Mighty Heart

Your first ride in a Queen’s Plate and you win it. How does that feel?

Daisuke Fukumoto (DF): “Unbelievable! I can’t explain…he’s feeling good today, he bolt good. I saw that nobody [was leaving] so I just sent him and he just kept going. After the wire, he still kept going, he didn’t stop there.”

The fractions were fast, did you realize how quick you were going?

DF: “Yeah, he was sharp today. I thought it was fast, but I took the lead so I can’t do anything, you know…I let him go. He only has one eye, but he’s got a big heart, a mighty heart.”

*Additional quotes will be added here when available.

TORONTO, September 12, 2020 – Mighty Heart lived up to his name in a dominating score in the 161st running of the Queen’s Plate, as the one-eyed colt trounced his 13 rivals on Saturday at Woodbine.

Originally slated for June 27, North America’s oldest continually run race was moved to September 12 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the connections of Mighty Heart, it was well worth the wait.

Bred and owned by Lawrence Cordes, the son of Dramedy flew under the radar leading up to the Plate, but the Ontario-bred bay, in his first stakes test, landed in the winner’s circle courtesy of a sensational coast-to-coast score in the $1 million classic.

Sent off at 13-1, Mighty Heart, trained by Josie Carroll, was directed to the front from post 13 as first-time Plate jockey Daisuke Fukumoto guided his charge over to the rail as the field passed the wire for the first time.

Mighty Heart was joined to the outside by Tecumseh’s War, while Truebelieve sat third, with Plate Trial champion Clayton settling in fourth. Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser champ and Plate mutuel favourite Curlin’s Voyage was forced into an outside journey as the field headed into the first turn of the 1 1/4-mile Tapeta test.

There was no change in the top four positions as Mighty Heart led the field through an opening quarter-mile in :23.57.

One-length on top after a half-mile in :47.61, Mighty Heart was still yet to be tested, but just after the 1:12.70 three-quarters mark, Curlin’s Voyage, under Patrick Husbands, began a bid from eighth. Rafael Hernandez, aboard Clayton, attempted to get the jump on the Oaks champ, and soon engaged the pacesetter.

As the field turned for home, Clayton was roused to engage Mighty Heart, but to no avail, as the leader easily repelled the challenge and rocketed home to a rousing 7 ½-length victory.

Mighty Heart and jockey Daisuke Fukumoto winning the 161st running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, on Saturday, Sept. 12 at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo) 

Belichick, under Slade Callaghan, rallied to grab second spot, while Clayton settled for third, a neck in front of Tecumseh’s War. Curlin’s Voyage, Canada’s champion two-year-old filly, was a head back in fifth.

It was a one-two Plate finish for Carroll, who celebrated her third “Gallop for the Guineas” crown. The Canadian Hall of Fame inductee took the 2006 edition with Edenwold and the 2011 running with filly Inglorious.

The final time was 2:01.98, the second fastest Plate run since 1957. Izvestia, who went on to win the 1990 Triple Crown, won in 2:01 4/5ths.

“I was concerned for a minute or two with the quick fractions but he looked like he was settling and doing it easily,” said Carroll. “We knew he’d go all day and he sure did. You know what, he’s just a very exciting horse who’s come a long way for Mr. Cordes who’s had a lot of confidence in him from the start.”

Fukumoto and Carroll are now a perfect three-for-three when teaming together.

“Unbelievable,” said Fukumoto, making his first Plate start. “I can’t explain…he’s feeling good today, he bolt good. I saw that nobody [was leaving] so I just sent him and he just kept going. After the wire, he still kept going, he didn’t stop there.”

Mighty Heart is now 2-0-1 from five starts. He broke his maiden in his third start, a 4 ¼-length score at 1 1/16 miles on July 11 at Woodbine, and arrived at the Plate off a third-place performance at the same distance.

“He was sharp today,” praised Fukumoto. “I thought it was fast but I took the lead so I can’t do anything, you know…I let him go. He only has one eye, but he’s got a big heart, a mighty heart.”

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.

Wando, in 2003, was the last horse to sweep the series and the seventh since its exception in 1959.

Mighty Heart returned $28.50, $13.80 and $8.20, combining with Belichick ($20.90, $12.10) for a $730.40 (13-3) exactor. A 13-3-12 (Clayton, $4.20 to show) triactor paid $1,878.70 for a $1 ticket, while a $1 Superfecta [13-3-12-14 (Tecumseh’s War)] was worth $19,389.75.

TORONTO, September 11, 2020 – The field is set for Saturday’s $1 million Queen’s Plate at Woodbine and the experts have weighed in with their selections for the final edition of the Queen’s Plate Power Rankings presented by the OLG Canadian Triple Crown.

The Power Rankings highlight top contenders leading up to the first leg of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown as voted on by expert horseplayers and racing commentators from Woodbine Racetrack and Fort Erie Race Track, including Jeff Bratt, Robert Geller, Ashley Mailloux, Doug McPherson, Jason Portuondo and Monique Vag. The rankings are based on votes following a 5-4-3-2-1 points system for top five selections and honourable mentions.

Curlin’s Voyage and Clayton, the morning line favourites at odds of 5-2 and 2-1 respectively, accumulated 25 points each, with the filly getting the nod for top spot in the final Power Rankings with more first-place votes (3-2). Halo Again maintained his position in third while Dotted Line and Merveilleux remain in a dead heat for fourth.

Queen’s Plate contender Curlin’s Voyage with exercise rider Billy O’Connor at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

“Curlin’s Voyage is the most accomplished horse in the field and I don’t think she will have any problem with the mile and a quarter distance,” said Bratt of the multiple stakes winner trained by Josie Carroll. “She got a great set-up in the Woodbine Oaks, which was run in a faster time than the Plate Trial Stakes on the same day.”

“At 5-1 on the morning line, Halo Again will hopefully offer some value,” said Mailloux, selecting the Coronation Futurity and Queenston Stakes champion as her top pick. “While he was beat by Clayton last time out in the Plate Trial, he still ran a very strong race and, in his prior race, he was much the best in the Queenston. His trainer, Steve Asmussen, is known to have his horses ready to roll for big races so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him turn the tables on Clayton on Plate Day.”

The Queen’s Plate, scheduled as the 10th race on Saturday with an approximate post of 5:41 p.m. ET, is the highlight of an exciting 13-race program that includes the $250,000 Canadian Stakes presented by the Japan Racing Association (Grade 2), the $250,000 Bison City Stakes presented by Rethink Breast Cancer, the $100,000 King Corrie Stakes and the $100,000 Ruling Angel Stakes.

The Queen’s Plate Day wagering menu will feature a total of $1.05 million in guaranteed Pick 4 and Pick 5 pools, plus there will be a mandatory payout on the Jackpot Hi-5, which has a carryover of $211,780.52.

The action begins at 12:30 p.m. Fans can watch and wager via HPIbet and join this year’s Queen’s Plate @ Home experience by following Woodbine’s social media channels @WoodbineTB and tuning into the national broadcast on TSN and CTV starting at 4:30 p.m.

The 161st Queen’s Plate Power Rankings presented by the OLG Canadian Triple Crown (September 11)

Rank – Horse – Career Record – Earnings – Trainer – Points (First-Place Votes) – Previous Ranking

1 – Curlin’s Voyage – 9-5-2-1 – $664,120 – Josie Carroll – 25 (3) – 2nd

2 – Clayton – 4-3-1-0 – $205,920 – Kevin Attard – 25 (2) – 1st

3 – Halo Again – 6-3-1-0 – $287,732 – Steve Asmussen – 16 (1) – 3rd

4 – Dotted Line (tie) – 8-3-0-2 – $194,140 – Sid Attard – 9 – 4th (tied)

4 – Merveilleux (tie) – 8-2-3-1 – $244,660 – Kevin Attard – 9 – 4th (tied)

Honourable Mentions: Olliemyboy, Mighty Heart

TORONTO, September 10, 2020 – Art of Almost and Elizabeth Way, both trained by Roger Attfield, will take on eight rivals, including multiple Grade 1 champion Cambier Parc, in Saturday’s $250,000 Canadian Stakes presented by the Japan Racing Association (Grade 2), one of four added-money features that complement the 161st running of The Queen’s Plate.

A dual hall of fame inductee, Attfield will look for his fourth Canadian crown, having won the 1984 edition with Dundrum Dancer, the 1994 running with Alywow, and the 2010 renewal with Miss Keller.

He’ll have a pair of chances to add to his Canadian haul in the 1 1/8-mile stakes race for fillies & mares, three-year-olds and up, contested over the E.P. Taylor Turf Course.

A four-year-old daughter of Dansili (GB), Art of Almost has crafted a 3-3-4 mark from 15 starts for the ownership group of Frederick Seitz, Jon Kelly, Danny Ward, and Dr. Ted Folkerth.

The multiple graded stakes placed miss finished third in a pair of stakes races in 2019, the Dance Smartly (G2), and Pucker Up (G3).

Art of Almost heads into the Canadian off back-to-back fourth-place stakes outings, including her most recent engagement, the Dance Smartly on August 15.

What she lacks in size, offered Attfield, is made up for in effort.

“She’s the same little tiny herself.  She always tries. She’s training into the race very well, actually.”

Godolphin-bred Elizabeth Way, a four-year-old daughter of Frankel, is enjoying a fruitful 2020 campaign, going 3-0-2 from six starts.

The chestnut, owned by John McCormack, took all the spoils in The Very One (G3) on February 29 at Gulfstream – her second start of the season – and won the Nassau Stakes (G2) on June 27 at Woodbine.

She arrives at the Canadian off a third in the Dance Smartly.

“It wasn’t her race at all,” said Attfield, of the most recent performance. “She didn’t really go into it as nicely as she had in all her other races. She didn’t really run her race. She was running off the bridle with her head up. But at least she was third, anyway. She’s coming into this one much better than she was the last one, for sure.”

Elizabeth Way (inside) and Art of Almost (outside) at Woodbine in early August. (Michael Burns Photo)

Three-time stakes winner Amalfi Coast, who closed out her three-year-old season with a victory in the Bessarabian Stakes (G2), will look to notch her first win in 2020. The daughter of Tapizar comes into the Canadian off a third-place effort in the Seaway (G3) on August 16.

The Terra Racing homebred, trained by Kevin Attard (who won the past two editions with Starship Jubilee), is 4-2-2 from 11 lifetime starts.

Hoolie Racing Stable’s multiple graded stakes placed Another Time has four wins, a second and three thirds from 12 starts.

Trained by Barbara Minshall, the four-year-old daughter of Munnings was second in this year’s Nassau (G2), third in the Trillium (G3) and most recently, fourth in the Seaway (G3).

Bold Script, a four-year-old daughter of Speightstown, is 3-6-4 from 16 outings for owner and breeder Chiefswood Stables.

The Ontario-bred grey, trained by Stuart Simon, has contested four graded events, including a pair of third-place efforts in the 2018 Natalma (G1) and 2019 Selene (G3). She was the runner-up in the 2019 Bison City.

Cambier Parc, who last raced nearly a year ago, has won three of her past four starts – including back-to-back Grade 1 triumphs – for OXO Equine and trainer Chad Brown.

The four-year-old daughter of Medaglia d’Oro took the Del Mar Oaks last August and followed it up with a victory in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup in October.

“I appreciate Larry Best giving me the opportunity with this horse,” Brown said after the Queen Elizabeth win. “She’s a really well-bred, great-looking horse that anyone would love to have. I’m lucky to have her.”

Bred in Kentucky by Bonne Chance Farm, she is out of 2007 Canadian Horse of the Year and Triple Tiara winner Sealy Hill, who has also produced Canadian champion sprinter and Grade 2 winner Hillaby and Grade 3 winners Belle Hill and Gale Force.

Ivan Dalos’ homebred Court Return goes for the natural hat trick after a romp on July 2 at Woodbine, followed by an Eternal Search Stakes triumph on August 22.

Trained by Josie Carroll, the four-year-old daughter of Court Vision was fourth in last year’s Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine.

Sam-Son Farm homebred Rideforthecause will be making her first stakes appearance since contesting the Tropical Park Oaks last December at Gulfstream.

The four-year-old daughter of Candy Ride is 3-0-1 from nine career starts. She arrives at the Canadian off a rallying score on August 1 at Woodbine, a 1 ½-length win at 1 1/16 miles over the Toronto oval’s Inner Turf.

Bred and owned by Craig Singer, Runway Dreamer rallied from second-last at the quarter-mile mark to win an 11-horse 1 1/16-mile Inner Turf race on August 22.

Trained by Josie Carroll, the three-year-old daughter of Candy Ride has contested six of her career races at Woodbine, with the other two coming at Gulfstream.

This will be her third stakes appearance.

Classic Stamp (2004, 2005) and reigning Canadian Horse of the Year Starship Jubilee (2018, 2019) are the only two-time winners of the Canadian. Sam-Son Farm leads all owners with four wins, and Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame inductee Robin Platts tops all riders with five victories.

The Canadian Stakes, which is the third leg of Woodbine’s Ladies of the Lawn bonus series, precedes the $1 million Queen’s Plate, as the ninth of 13 races. The $250,000 Bison City Stakes, second jewel in the Canadian Triple Tiara series, goes as race eight. The $100,000 King Corrie (race two) and $100,00 Ruling Angel (race 12) overnight stakes are also on tap Saturday. First race post time is 12:30 p.m.

$250,000 Canadian Stakes (Grade 2)

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer – Morning Line

1 – Theodora B. – Kazushi Kimura – Michael Dickinson – 5-1

2 – Court Return – Luis Contreras – Josie Carroll – 20-1

3 – Elizabeth Way – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Roger Attfield – 4-1

4 – Rideforthecause – Davy Moran – Gail Cox – 20-1

5 – Another Time – Steven Bahen – Barbara Minshall – 12-1

6 – Amalfi Coast – Justin Stein – Kevin Attard – 6-1

7 – Runway Dreamer – Slade Callaghan – Josie Carroll – 20-1

8 – Bold Script – Patrick Husbands – Stuart Simon – 20-1

9 – Art of Almost – Daisuke Fukumoto – Roger Attfield – 15-1

10 – Cambier Parc – Rafael Hernandez – Chad Brown – 6-5


Afleet Katherine fits the bill in Bison City 

Afleet Katherine is coming off a solid second-place finish in the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser, and the respective 1-3 finishers there, Curlin’s Voyage and Merveilleux, are contenders for Saturday’s Queen’s Plate.

But the connections of the lightly-raced Afleet Katherine, who could have been supplemented to the Plate at a cost of $25,000, have chosen a more conservative path and the Terra Racing Stable homebred looms an odds-on choice for Saturday’s $250,000 Bison City.

The Bison City, a 1 1/16-mile fixture which follows the Woodbine Oaks as the second leg of the Triple Tiara for Canadian-bred three-year-old fillies, attracted a field of eight and will go as the eighth of 13 races on the program.

“We discussed it (running in the Queen’s Plate) a little bit, obviously,” said trainer Kevin Attard, who conditions Afleet Katherine for Terra triumvirate of Dom Romeo; his son, Frank; and his grandson, Mike Romeo. “From the beginning, it kind of seemed the road was going to be the Bison City.

“Frank Romeo thought she had done a lot to this point, and was obviously concerned about her long-term future, and didn’t want to do too much too soon with her. You have to respect that a lot, I think.”

Afleet Katherine was highly regarded at two but did not make it to the races and, after wintering in Florida, finally debuted with a victory at almost 30-1 in a seven-furlong maiden turf race here July 5.

With an eye toward the Woodbine Oaks, Afleet Katherine swung back over the same distance and surface three weeks later and knocked out her first allowance condition while defeating older rivals.

Despite making her Tapeta debut and travelling around two turns for the first time, Afleet Katherine was a surprising 4.40-1 third choice in the Woodbine Oaks and ran a remarkable race while beaten less than two lengths with stablemate Merveilleux a half-length in arrears.

“I thought she ran brilliant,” said Attard. “She was really the only horse that kind of survived that hectic early pace. She was trying right to the end, lacking a lot of seasoning, obviously, compared to everybody else in the field.”

Justin Stein, her career pilot to date, retains the mount. He is currently tied atop the jockey standings with 74 wins this season (next to Rafael Hernandez).

The Afleet Alex-Include Katherine filly is a half-sibling to Terra Racing’s Canadian Stakes starter Amalfi Coast (by Tapizar).

Afleet Katherine winning on July 5 at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

The only stakes winners in the field are Gun Society and Infinite Patience.

Gun Society, who closed out her first campaign with back-to-back wins including the South Ocean for Ontario-sired fillies at the 1 1/16-mile distance, appears to have rounded back into form for her fourth start of this season.

Trained, owned and bred by the venerable Roger Attfield, the daughter of Society’s Chairman trailed while making her sophomore bow here in the seven-furlong Fury and has faced older rivals on the turf in  two subsequent 1 1/16-mile starts, including a last-out second in the restricted Eternal Search.

“She had a setback, and she wasn’t really ready for the Fury, but I ran her anyway for the fitness edge, sort of thing,” said Attfield. “She wasn’t doing well at all there, or for the next race actually. She’s just started to come around. Her last race was quite creditable, I thought. So, we’ll give her a shot.”

Gun Society raced with blinkers for the first time in the Eternal Search and was beaten 1 ¼ lengths by the four-year-old Court Return.

“I think the blinkers made her more focused,” said Attfield. “I think she surprised the jock as much as myself. She took off early; she probably went too soon, really. We were experimenting a little, but it was good.”

Kazushi Kimura retains the mount on Gun Society.

Infinite Patience, the British Columbia-bred who was the pride of Hastings Racecourse last year while winning four stakes and five provincial year-end awards including Horse of the Year, will be looking to rebound from a faltering seventh-place finish in the Woodbine Oaks.

That was her second start locally, following a solid third-place finish behind Curlin’s Voyage and Justleavitalone in the Fury, and her first for locally-based trainer Lorne Richards.

“We were disappointed,” said Richards, who is conditioning Infinite Patience for Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and co-owner/breeder Bill DeCoursey.

“She was real good going into the Oaks, but she just wouldn’t settle. We’ve tried a few different things and hopefully we can get her to relax a little bit more this time.

“She’s a nice little filly, for sure.”

Patrick Husbands, aboard when the Sungold filly breezed five furlongs in 1:02.60 here September 1, has the mount for the Bison City.

Also returning from the Woodbine Oaks will be Mizzen Beau and Justleaveitalone, the respective fourth and fifth-place finishers.

Justleaveitalone had followed up her surprising performance in the Fury with her maiden win at 1 1/8 miles.

Mizzen Beau, fifth when making her local bow in the Fury, will be looking to give trainer Norm Casse his first local win.

The Bison City also lured two invaders in Truth Hurts, who has been training at Belmont with Chad Summers, and Pseudonym, recently shipped to Saratoga after beginning her career at Gulfstream this spring for Saffie Joseph Jr. Both fillies will be racing on a synthetic surface for the first time.

Ballrooms of Mars, second behind Justleaveitalone in the August 2 maiden race, rounds out the field in which all starters carry 121 pounds.

The $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes, the final leg of the Triple Tiara, is scheduled for 1 ¼ miles on the E.P Taylor turf course here October 25.

$250,000 Bison City Stakes 

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer – Morning Line

1 – Ballrooms of Mars – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Catherine Day Phillips – 20-1

2 – Afleet Katherine – Justin Stein – Kevin Attard – 4-5

3 – Truth Hurts – Rafael Hernandez – Chad Summers – 6-1

4 – Mizzen Beau – Steven Bahen – Norm Casse – 4-1

5 – Pseudonym – Luis Contreras – Saffie Joseph Jr. – 8-1

6 – Justleaveitalone – Sahin Civaci – Bob Hess Jr. – 20-1

7 – Infinite Patience – Patrick Husbands – Lorne Richards – 12-1

8 – Gun Society – Kazushi Kimura – Roger Attfield – 10-1

– Bill Tallon for Woodbine Communications 


Ruling Angel and King Corrie Stakes set for Queen’s Plate day

Undefeated filly Boardroom and graded stakes placed Avie’s Samurai headline the field of seven three-year-old fillies set to contest the $100,000 Ruling Angel Stakes over 6-1/2 furlongs on the Tapeta this Saturday at Woodbine. The pair is trained by Hall of Famer Josie Carroll, who sends out a trio of contenders in the afternoon’s featured Queen’s Plate, including star sophomore filly Curlin’s Voyage.

Boardroom, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Commissioner, is perfect in two career starts at Woodbine, winning her races by a combined margin of 9-1/4 lengths in rein to Luis Contreras for L N K Foxwoods.

Patrick Husbands picks up the mount on the Ivan Dalos’ homebred Avie’s Samurai, a three-time winner who missed by just a head in the Grade 3 Ontario Colleen Stakes last time out (August 29) when making her debut on the E.P. Taylor turf course at a mile. Prior to that outing, the First Samurai filly won over the Ruling Angel course and distance and was fourth in the seven-furlong Fury, finishing 2-1/2 lengths behind the aforementioned Queen’s Plate-bound Curlin’s Voyage.

Woodbine newcomer Francatelli is the 8-5 favourite in the King Corrie, a five-furlong sprint on the Inner Turf course. The Kentucky-bred City Zip gelding has won his last two of four starts including a powerful 9-1/2 length tally in a 5-1/2-furlong allowance race mid-August at Laurel Park. Justin Stein gets the call aboard the Cathal Lynch trainee, who is co-owned by Maribeth Sandford.

Among the contenders he’ll face is local Greenwood Stakes champion Forester’s Turn, who is five-for-seven lifetime for trainer Robert Tiller and owner/breeder Rolph Davis.

$100,000 Ruling Angels Stakes 

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer – Morning Line 

1 – Boardroom – Luis Contreras – Josie Carroll – 2-1

2 – Jumping Jill Flash – Kazushi Kimura – Mark Casse – 12-1

3 – Cambria – Justin Stein – Wesley Ward – 8-1

4 – Our Secret Agent – Emma-Jayne Wilson – 6-1

5 – Positive Danger – Rafael Hernandez – Anthony Granitz – 20-1

6 – Artie’s Princess – Justin Stein – Wesley Ward – 5-2

7 – Avie’s Samurai – Patrick Husbands – Josie Carroll – 3-1 

$100,000 King Corrie Stakes 

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer – Morning Line 

1 – Lontano – Rafael Hernandez – Mark Casse – 10-1

2 – Forester’s Turn – Kazushi Kimura – Robert Tiller – 2-1

3 – Duke of Carthania – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Mark Casse – 6-1

4 – See Forever – David Moran – Michael Keogh – 20-1

5 – Francatelli – Justin Stein – Cathal Lynch – 8-5

6 – Aye Aye Sir – Luis Contreras – Wesley Ward – 8-1

7 – Cajun Casanova – Patrick Husbands – Michael Pino – 5-1

TORONTO, September 9, 2020 – Plate Trial champ Clayton and multiple stakes-winning filly Curlin’s Voyage will take on 12 other Queen’s Plate hopefuls in the $1 million classic set for 1 ¼ miles on the Woodbine Tapeta this Saturday.

The 161st edition of the Queen’s Plate, North America’s oldest continually run race, is the first leg of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, a tri-surface series for Canadian-bred three-year-olds.

Wando, bred and owned by the late Gustav Schickedanz, was the last horse to accomplish the feat while becoming the seventh to record the unique triple in 2003. The $400,000 Prince of Wales, run at 1 3/16 miles on the dirt at Fort Erie on September 29, is the second leg. The $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes, at 1 ½ miles over the world-renowned E.P. Taylor Turf Course at Woodbine on October 24, concludes the series.

The double-draw format was in place for Wednesday’s virtual post position draw, with the order of selection first established and the connections then choosing their post positions. The connections of Glorious Tribute selected first and chose post seven.

This year’s edition of the Queen’s Plate showcases an intriguing mix of heavyweight contenders, live longshots and emerging stars. Fillies will carry 123 pounds, while all other starters carry 126 pounds.

A son of Bodemeister, Clayton has three wins and one second from four starts for owners Donato Lanni and Daniel Plouffe.

Trained by Kevin Attard, who also sends out the filly Merveilleux, the bay colt arrives at the Plate in sharp form, having won two straight, including the Plate Trial on August 15.

Bred by Bernard and Karen McCormack, Clayton will be piloted by Rafael Hernandez, who won the 2015 Plate with Shaman Ghost.

Attard, who finished second with the late Steve Stavro homebred Alezzandro in the 2007 running, likes what he sees ahead of the big race.

“He’s been special from the get-go,” praised Attard. “He was an impressive maiden winner, so once that happened, the bell starts ringing in your head, and you’re saying, ‘Hey, maybe I’ve got a good three-year-old here.’ He followed it up with a good race first time out this year – didn’t win but had traffic trouble – and I think he learned a lot. That was encouraging. Obviously, he’s won his last two since then and stretched out. He’s doing everything you want him to. Hopefully, he just needs to get a little bit better one more time and maybe he can put everything together.”

Queen’s Plate morning line favourite Clayton breezes under jockey Rafael Hernandez for trainer Kevin Attard at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)

Curlin’s Voyage, who took this year’s running of the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks presented by Budweiser, could deliver Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame inductee Josie Carroll her third Plate victory.

Carroll, who won the Queen’s Plate with filly Inglorious in 2011 and with Edenwold in 2006, will also have Belichick and Mighty Heart go postward in her quest to net the hat trick.

Named champion two-year-old filly in Canada, Curlin’s Voyage is bred by Hill ‘n’ Dale Equine Holdings, Inc., who co-owns with Windsor Boys Racing.

What’s impressed Carroll the most when it comes to the filly that sports a 5-2-1 mark from nine career outings?

“Her consistency. She finds a way to get it done. She always shows up and she’s a very, very special filly.”

The multiple stakes winning daughter of Curlin will seek to become fourth filly to win the Queen’s Plate in the last seven years.

Over the last 10 years, three Oaks winners have gone on to win the Plate: Inglorious, Lexie Lou (2014) and Holy Helena (2017).

“We’ve always thought very highly of her after her two-year-old debut,” praised Carroll, of Curlin’s Voyage. “She’s a very uncomplicated filly and does everything you ask of her.”

Patrick Husbands, who won the Canadian Triple Crown with Wando in 2003, and the 2014 Plate with Lexie Lou, will be in the irons.

Queen’s Plate contender Curlin’s Voyage breezes under exercise rider Billy O’Connor at Woodbine Racetrack for trainer Josie Carroll. (Michael Burns Photo)

Halo Again, trained by Steve Asmussen for Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing, knows the Woodbine main track well.

Last year, the son of Speightstown took the Coronation Futurity Stakes. This year, the bay colt won the Queenston Stakes, and most recently, finished a game second, a half-length back of Clayton, in the Plate Trial.

“We feel very good about his chances,” said Asmussen. “I thought he stayed on nicely [in the Plate Trial]. He came out of the race in great shape.”

Jockey Luis Contreras, who teamed with Inglorious to win the 2011 Plate, and partnered Holy Helena to victory in 2017, could give Asmussen his first win in the “Gallop for the Guineas.”

Having never finished lower than fifth in eight career outings, Dotted Line will look to connect the dots for his biggest win to date this Saturday.

Bred and owned by Howard Walton (Norseman Racing Stable), the son of Signature Red has three career wins, including a 49-1 upset in last year’s Frost King Stakes.

Dotted Line was third in the Plate Trial, just a shade over a half-length behind Clayton, with Justin Stein in the irons. The British Columbia-born rider won the 2012 Plate with Strait of Dover.

“He’s a horse that always tries every time,” said Attard, who won the Atto Mile (G1) with Numerous Times in 2001 and the Northern Dancer Turf Stakes (G1) with Interpol in 2015. “He has run a lot of good races, and hopefully, he comes up with his biggest one on Saturday. He’s coming around really nicely.”

Attard, who has started seven horses in the Queen’s Plate – his best finish coming in 1992 when Grand Hooley finished second to Alydeed – also sends out Olliemyboy.

Owned by NK Racing and LNJ Foxwoods, Belichick arrives at the Queen’s Plate off a second-place effort on August 1 in a 1 1/8-mile main track race at Woodbine.

Bred by Sean Fitzhenry, the bay colt is a son of 1999 Belmont Stakes winner and multiple graded stakes champ Lemon Drop Kid.

Belichick finished third in his career bow on July 4 at Woodbine.

“He came to me in Florida this winter,” noted Carroll. “He’s a tremendous-moving horse that impressed from the start. We put the Plate on our radar right at that time. His first two starts, he was very green and unfocused, and he just now seems to be pulling it together. He’s a horse that had enough talent to be given a chance in there [Plate].”

Bred by Josham Farms Limited, F F Rocket launches his Woodbine debut in the Plate.

Owned by Frank Fletcher Racing Operations Inc., the son of Curlin broke his maiden in his most recent start, a two-length triumph at 1 mile and 70 yards over Presque Isle Downs’ main track.

The chestnut, trained by Albert Stall Jr. (he won the 2010 Breeders’ Cup when Blame bested Zenyatta), debuted at Fair Grounds last December, before a pair of races at Oaklawn Park to start his three-year-old campaign.

Glorious Tribute, trained by Barbara Minshall for Bruce Lunsford, finished fourth in the Plate Trial at 62-1.

The son of Congrats, who was third to Halo Again in this year’s Queenston Stakes, broke his maiden in the final start of his two-year-old campaign.

Minshall was Canada’s champion trainer in 1996. Her top horses include Mt. Sassafras, Strut the Course, Kiridashi, Stephanotis and Stacked Deck. She became the first female conditioner to win a Triple Crown race – in both the U.S. and Canada – when Kiridashi won the Prince of Wales Stakes in 1995.

Holyfield will look to provide a knockout Plate punch for the combination of trainer Catherine Day Phillips and Kingfield Racing Stable Ltd., along with co-owners and breeders David Anderson and Rod Ferguson.

The son of Uncle Mo dug down gamely in a 1 1/16 mile turf race on August 22 at Woodbine, notching a head score at 9-1 to break his maiden.

Al and Bill Ulwelling’s Merveilleux endured traffic troubles in the Woodbine Oaks, finishing a game third, 2 ¼ lengths behind Curlin’s Voyage.

Fashioning a record of 2-3-1 from eight starts, the daughter of Paynter finished second, a neck and a head back, respectively, in last year’s Princess Elizabeth Stakes and Ontario Lassie Stakes.

“I honestly think what has made her special is from day one of purchasing her she has been professional,” said Al Ulwelling. “What I mean is that she has just been all business. She loves her career, loves to train and compete. She has had a few tough beats and it’s almost like it has bothered her. She’s very smart and tries hard. She will be great addition to our broodmare band when all is said and done.”

Bred by Mike Carroll, the bay filly is trained by Kevin Attard. Kazushi Kimura, the 2018 and 2019 champion apprentice in Canada, and 2019 Eclipse Award winner as North America’s top rider, gets the mount.

“Honestly, I just think she’s just been a very unfortunate horse this year, racing luck wise,” said Attard. “Things haven’t quite gone her way. I had high expectations for her in the Oaks. She showed a lot of talent at two and we were really excited to have her. With her, we considered the Plate right from the get-go. The mile and a quarter distance is not going to be an issue for her.

“She’s just one horse that you’re hoping on that day everything goes right for her and she finally gets a clear run, no obstacles, no hurdles – that way she can prove whether she’s good enough or not and there’s no excuses. She’s doing very well and I’m quite please with her. Both horses [Merveilleux and Clayton] are coming into the race as good as I want them to be.”

The Ulwellings are thrilled at the opportunity to have a Plate starter.

“It means everything to us to have a horse in the Plate,” said Ulwelling. “When we started mapping a goal out four years ago, we set out on a mission to try to stay at Woodbine and run in as many big races as we can. When my father and I were getting a plan together, the race that always popped up was the Plate. We honestly just feel lucky to be competing in a race with so much history. We love Kevin, his family, Woodbine, and the people who work there. This will be our goal every year. We are ecstatic to be in the Plate.”

One-eyed Mighty Heart will be making his stakes debut in the Plate.

Bred and owned by Lawrence Cordes, the son of Dramedy has a win and a third from four career starts, those efforts coming in his past two starts.

On July 11, the Josie Carroll trainee broke outward, but recovered and went on to a 4 ¼-length victory at 1 1/16 miles over the Woodbine Tapeta.

“Mighty Heart is a horse that will definitely get the distance,” said Carroll. “He has improved leaps and bounds as he’s learned. From his first two starts where he had no clue what he was doing, he’s really become professional.”

A dark bay son of Union Rags, Olliemyboy recorded his first career win in his latest start, a two-length triumph at 1 1/8 miles over the Woodbine main track on August 1.

Owned by JMJ Racing Stables LLC, the Ontario-bred colt finished fourth in his debut at Tampa Bay Downs this March before heading north to Woodbine.

Steve Bahen, who won the 2002 Plate with 82-1 T J’s Lucky Moon, will get the mount for the Plate for Hall of Fame trainer Sid Attard.

“It was a very good race,” said the trainer of the August 1 score. “He closed very strong and he was full of run. He is learning and getting better with each race. I think the distance is no problem for this horse.”

Trained by Dan Vella, who won the 1994 Plate with Basqueian and the 2012 edition with Strait of Dover, Sweepin Hard, a son of Conquest Curlinate, enters the biggest race of his career on a winning note.

Owned by Borders Racing Stable, Sweepin Hard notched a 1 ½-length score over 1 1/8 miles on the Toronto oval Tapeta on August 16.

Bred by Charles Hayden, the dark bay gelding was unraced at two.

Tecumseh’s War, a dark bay son of Summer Front, won his debut last October at Indiana Downs.

Making his eighth career start in the Plate, the Catherine Day Phillips trainee finished second in his latest engagement, a 1 1/8 mile race over the Woodbine main track.

Emma-Jayne Wilson, who draws the riding assignment, is looking for her second “Gallop for the Guineas” victory with the Ilium Stable silk bearer. The champion rider won the 2007 Plate With Mike Fox.

Truebelieve, who sports a 2-1-0 mark from five starts, is owned by Centennial Farms (Niagara).

The bay son of Nephrite (GB), bred by Laurel Byrne, orchestrated a 64-1 score (for different connections) in his debut last November at Woodbine, crossing the wire a 1 ½-length winner at five furlongs on the Tapeta.

Trained by 23-year-old Manitoba native Cole Bennett, Truebelieve earned his second career win two starts ago when the colt rallied for a half-length victory at six furlongs over the Woodbine main track.

“I think… it’s not proof to other people, but proof to myself that I can do this,” said Bennett. “I started training when I was really young. There was doubt from a lot of other people, but also from myself, in that you can make a living being a trainer and get to bigger places and run in bigger races. It was almost a pipe dream at one point. To be in this race, it really is a dream come true. To win it, that would be the ultimate.”

First race post time for Saturday is 12:30 p.m. (ET), with the featured Queen’s Plate scheduled as race 10 (5:41 p.m.). The national Plate broadcast will be televised on TSN and CTV starting at 4:30 p.m.

For the latest information, fans can follow @WoodbineTB on both Twitter and Instagram, and visit QueensPlate.com.


Post – Horse – Trainer – Owner – Jockey – Morning Line

1 – Sweepin Hard (S) – Daniel Vella – Borders Racing Stable – Leo Salles – 50-1

2 – Merveilleux – Kevin Attard – Al and Bill Ulwelling – Kazushi Kimura – 10-1

3 – Belichick – Josie Carroll – NK Racing & LNJ Foxwoods – Slade Callaghan – 30-1

4 – Truebelieve – Cole Bennett – Centennial Farms (Niagara) – Keveh Nicholls – 30-1

5 – Holyfield – Catherine Day Phillips – Kingfield Racing Stable, Roderick Ferguson & Anderson Farms Ontario – Darryll Holland – 30-1

6 – Halo Again – Steve Asmussen – Winchell Thoroughbreds & Willis Horton Racing – Luis Contreras – 5-1

7 – Glorious Tribute – Barbara Minshall – Bruce Lunsford – David Moran – 30-1

8 – Olliemyboy – Sid Attard – JMJ Racing Stables – Steven Bahen – 30-1

9 – Dotted Line – Sid Attard – Norseman Racing Stable – Justin Stein – 8-1

10 – Curlin’s Voyage – Josie Carroll – Hill ‘n’ Dale Equine Holdings & Windsor Boys Racing – Patrick Husbands – 5-2

11 – F F Rocket – Albert Stall Jr. – Frank Fletcher Racing Operations – Sahin Civaci – 50-1

12 – Clayton – Kevin Attard – Donato Lanni & Daniel Plouffe – Rafael Hernandez – 2-1

13 – Mighty Heart – Josie Carroll – Lawrence Cordes – Daisuke Fukumoto – 20-1

14 – Tecumseh’s War – Catherine Day Phillips – Ilium Stables – Emma-Jayne Wilson – 12-1

TORONTO, September 8, 2020 – The post position draw for the 161st running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, will be held tomorrow morning (Wednesday, Sept. 9).

Racing analyst Jason Portuondo will host the post draw show, which will be streamed live online from Woodbine Racetrack’s broadcast studio and paddock.

The traditional Queen’s Plate post position draw format will be used to determine how the field will line up in the starting gate, beginning with a draw to decide the order in which connections will select their posts.

The live stream will begin at 10:15 a.m., with Jim Lawson, President and CEO of Woodbine Entertainment, joining the show to discuss the exciting weekend ahead at Woodbine. Representatives for each horse will be present to select their post positions in order of the draw and take part in an interview with Portuondo.

Live streaming will be available on Woodbine’s website at Woodbine.com and Facebook page.

The Queen’s Plate, the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America featuring Canada’s finest three-year-old Thoroughbreds, will be contested on Saturday, Sept. 12.


Horse – Trainer – Owner(s)

Belichick – Josie Carroll – NK Racing & LNJ Foxwoods

Clayton – Kevin Attard – Donato Lanni & Daniel Plouffe

Curlin’s Voyage (filly) – Josie Carroll – Hill ‘n’ Dale Equine Holdings & Windsor Boys Racing

Dotted Line – Sid Attard – Norseman Racing Stable

F F Rocket – Al Stall Jr. – Frank Fletcher Racing Operations

Glorious Tribute – Barbara Minshall – Bruce Lunsford

Halo Again – Steven Asmussen – Winchell Thoroughbreds & Willis Horton Racing

Holyfield – Catherine Day Phillips – Kingfield Racing Stable, Roderick Ferguson & Anderson Farms Ontario

Merveilleux (filly) – Kevin Attard – Al and Bill Ulwelling

Mighty Heart – Josie Carroll – Lawrence Cordes

Olliemyboy – Sid Attard – JMJ Racing Stables

Sweepin Hard (supplement) – Daniel Vella – Borders Racing Stable

Tecumseh’s War – Catherine Day Phillips – Ilium Stables

Truebelieve – Cole Bennett – Centennial Farms (Niagara)

*Final entries are due through the entry box by 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 9.

Toronto, On – September 8, 2020 – As part of this year’s Queen’s Plate @ Home, Woodbine Entertainment is creating a new tradition for one of Canada’s most prestigious events.

To keep music as a big part of The Queen’s Plate experience, Woodbine Entertainment invited Universal Music Canada artists Jade Eagleson and platinum-selling singer/songwriter Ryland James to perform exclusive versions of their hit-singles right on Woodbine Racetrack where North America’s longest continuously run Thoroughbred race will take place this Saturday, September 12.

“Over the past several years, music has become such a big part of The Queen’s Plate experience and we wanted to ensure that continued for our fans for this year’s event,” said Christina Litz, Vice President, Business Development and Revenue for Woodbine Entertainment. “Woodbine Sessions will hopefully become a new tradition for The Queen’s Plate, connecting the rich history of the race with special musical performances by Canadian artists.”

Jade Eagleson performed a special version of his song, “Boom Town”, written by multi-Grammy award-winner, Chris Stapleton and featured on his debut self-titled album. The album is on track to be the most streamed debut album globally by a Canadian country artist in the past 10 years.

Directed by Juno award-winning video director Ben Knetchel, the video for ‘Boom Town’, shot in front of the starting gates on the very track The Queen’s Plate will be run on this Saturday, is an ode to those who are missing the joys of coming to Woodbine Racetrack to watch horse racing and especially The Queen’s Plate.

‘Boom Town’ will be featured during the preview show for The 161st Queen’s Plate on Friday, September 11 on TSN (exact time TBD).

Breakout artist Ryland James performed a version of his fan favourite, hit-single ‘Water’ which was recently released on his debut self-titled EP. The highly anticipated new EP features a collection of songs including James’ certified platinum hit, “In My Head.” The music video, also directed by Knetchel, was shot at night on the renowned E.P. Taylor turf course with the empty stands in the background. It’s an upbeat celebration of The Queen’s Plate and horse racing during these unprecedented times. The music video will be featured in the national broadcast of The 161st Queen’s Plate on Saturday on CTV and TSN starting at 4:30 p.m. ET.

The special musical performances are a part of The Queen’s Plate @ Home and can be watched on YouTube.com by clicking below:

Jade Eagleson – ‘Boom Town’

Ryland James – ‘Water’

Both artists will be featured as part of Queen’s Plate at Home hosted by Melissa Grelo on September 12 on Instagram and fans who tune in will have a chance to win signed guitars from each artist.

The Queen’s Plate @ Home is a digital-first experience that will largely live on Woodbine Entertainment’s Instagram channel @WoodbineTB and will feature content anchored in the event’s longstanding traditions of fashion, gourmet food, music, wagering and world-class Thoroughbred racing.

Kicking off at Noon ET on Saturday, September 12, The Queen’s Plate @ Home will engage with fans from coast-to-coast and culminate with the live broadcast of The $1 million Queen’s Plate at 4:30 p.m. ET on TSN and CTV.

To help bring the experience to fans at home, Woodbine Entertainment has partnered with a stable of multi-platform content creators, celebrities and musicians, who will contribute unique #QueensPlate inspired content throughout the day.

North America’s longest continually run stakes race is for three-year-old Thoroughbreds foaled in Canada and is the first jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown. The event was originally scheduled for June 27 prior to being postponed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to ongoing health and safety precautions regarding COVID-19, Woodbine Entertainment has made the decision not to open The Queen’s Plate to the general public.


About Woodbine Entertainment

Woodbine Entertainment is the largest horse racing operator in Canada offering world-class horse racing at both Woodbine (Toronto) and Woodbine Mohawk Park (Milton) racetracks. Woodbine Entertainment also operates off-track wagering through its Champions teletheatre network, which includes WEGZ Stadium Bar in Vaughan and Greenwood in the Beach area of Toronto. Remote wagering is also available to customers through HPIbet (formerly HorsePlayer Interactive), the company’s telephone, internet and mobile account wagering service.