TORONTO, July 14 – Pink Lloyd rocks a three-race win streak into Sunday’s $125,000 Grade 3 Vigil Stakes, at Woodbine.
Trained by Robert Tiller for Entourage Stable, Pink Lloyd has won six of eight career starts including consecutive added-money scores to start 2017 with wins in the Jacques Cartier, New Providence and Achievement Stakes.
"He’s always been a horse with a lot of talent,” said Tiller. “He has a lot of heart and I believe he’s going to go out there and run his eyeballs out. He makes us proud this horse and we’re very blessed to have him.”
A late bloomer, Pink Lloyd made a winning debut last August as a four-year-old.
“He’s had a lot of issues along the way and we took our time with him but he’s now showing the type of horse he is,” noted Tiller.
A little bit of patience has certainly paid off on the high hopes the trainer and connections had for Pink Lloyd.
“He has a trainer with grey hair and owners with a little bit of grey hair. If you’re in this business long enough, you know sometimes you have to be patient and it will pay off for you in the long run. He’s a perfect example of that,” said Tiller.
The five-year-old chestnut son of Old Forester, bred in Ontario by John Carey, will be seeking his first graded stakes win in Sunday’s seven furlong Tapeta sprint. In his only other graded stakes start, Pink Lloyd strutted home second when defeated a length by Stacked Deck in the Grade 2 Kennedy Road to close out his 2016 meet.
On Sunday, Pink Lloyd will carry 124lbs, seven more than his five foes.
“The weight we’re carrying is certainly a factor. Every time you win you have to carry more weight and you have to keep doing it,” said Tiller. “All you can do is get them over there the best you can, but we’re very happy with him and I expect him to run real big.”
Pink Lloyd posted a bullet breeze, covering four furlongs in :46:80 on July 6, in his final Vigil prep. Leading rider Eurico Rosa da Silva retains the mount.
“He worked very easy, by himself, just doing it on his own. We’re very pleased with him,” said Tiller.
A compact but talented Vigil field includes graded stakes winner Riker and the ultra-consistent Western Elegance.
Trained by Nick Gonzalez, the now four-year-old Riker enjoyed a remarkable juvenile campaign winning the Colin, Swynford and Grade 3 Grey Stakes en route to a pacesetting sixth in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
While a run at the Kentucky Derby failed to come to fruition in a winless 2016, the dark bay son of Include found success in a return to sprinting by taking a seven furlong optional claiming sprint at Woodbine on April 29. Last time out, in the Grade 2 Eclipse Stakes over 1 1/16-miles on the Woodbine main, Riker set the pace before fading to fifth. Jesse Campbell will once again partner Riker as the colt turns back to seven furlongs.
Western Elegance, trained by Liane Davis for Double D Stables Inc, owns a record of 5-10-3 from 31 starts. With purse earnings of $185,572, the English Channel gelding rarely misses a cheque and boasts four wins and three seconds from eight starts over synthetic footing. In his lone trip to Woodbine, for last year’s Grade 3 Bold Venture Stakes, Western Elegance rallied last to finish a good fourth. Santo Sanjur will ride the Arlington Park based shipper.
We Deer You, Great Wide Open and Tale of the Nile complete the field.
The Grade 3 Vigil is slated as Race 8 on Sunday’s 10-race card. First post time is 1PM. Fans can watch and wager on all the action via HPIbet.com.
FIELD FOR THE GRADE 3 $125,000 VIGIL STAKES
POST / HORSE / JOCKEY / TRAINER
1 / Riker / Jesse Campbell / Nick Gonzalez
2 / We Deer You / Gary Boulanger / Mike Trombetta
3 / Pink Lloyd / Eurico Rosa da Silva / Robert Tiller
4 / Great Wide Open / David Moran / Conor Murphy
5 / Western Elegance / Santo Sanjur / Liane Davis
6 / Tale of the Nile / Willie Martinez / Mike Trombetta