TORONTO, April 27 – Queen’s Plate hopefuls Financial Recovery, Ellan Vannin and Enstone will all make their seasonal debut in Sunday’s $125,000 Fury Stakes, at Woodbine.
A talented field of nine sophomore fillies will take centre stage in the Fury Stakes (Race 8, 4:25 PM ET) which is likely to see Ghostly Presence go to post as the favourite. However, the Chiefswood Stable homebred is currently nominated only to the Woodbine Oaks. Ghostly Presence can be supplemented to the Queen’s Plate at a later date if she continues to improve for Hall of Fame trainer Roger Attfield. To read the full preview for the Fury Stakes, click here.
A busy Sunday of racing will see the trio of Courtly Manner, Grin n’ Bear and Last Wan square off (Race 10, 5:27PM) in a 6 1/2-furlong sprint on the Woodbine main.
Earlier on the same card, My Way Tapper, Totally Unexpected and Confidentiality (Race 7, 3:55PM ET) will fight it out over 6 1/2-furlongs in an optional claiming sprint on the Woodbine Tapeta.
On Saturday, Jurojin, winner of the Kingarvie Stakes here in November, make his seasonal debut in a seven furlong main track sprint (R7, 3:55PM), an optional claiming event against older foes. Simon Husbands has the call for Harold Ladouceur.
Fresh Princess, a troubled third last time out, will look to graduate in Saturday’s ninth race (4:57PM ET) when sprinting 6 1/2-furlongs on the Woodbine Tapeta. Eurico Rosa da Silva will pilot for the first time for trainer Tony M. Gattellaro.
There are Queen’s Plate nominated horses in action at both Keeneland and Woodbine on Friday.
Fleetway, trained by Mike Maker for owner Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey, is listed at 3-1 in Friday’s eighth race (4:57PM) at Keeneland, a 1 1/16-mile dirt route for three-year-olds and upward. Julien Leparoux will ride.
Five Plate nominees decorate Friday’s card at Woodbine including Diamonds and Roses, Arcen, Malibu Secret, Expedition and English Classic who will battle it out in a seven furlong main track sprint (Race 7, 3:54 PM ET) for sophomore maidens.
There were six Queen’s Plate contenders in action last weekend
Channel Maker finished a neck in front of fellow Plate nominee Avie’s Mesa when part of a blanket finish in a 1 1/8-mile turf allowance at Keeneland on April 26 which was won by the graded stakes placed Makarios.
There were four Plate hopefuls in last weekend’s Woodstock Stakes which was won by Canadian-bred Lokinforpursemonee who was not nominated to the Gallop for the Guineas. Of the nominated runners, Yorkton landed third well in front of Sailing Home who finished fourth. He was followed by fellow nominees Marten River and Woodbridge in fifth and sixth respectively.
Earlier on the Saturday card, Hemmin and Hawin finished sixth.
On Sunday at Woodbine, Signature Spring finished fifth although defeated just a length.
On Friday, April 21 a grand total of nine Queen’s Plate nominees were in action spread over three races of which two were at Woodbine and another at Keeneland.
Intent to Strike (7th) and Major Eclipse (9th) failed to fire in a maiden turf allowance at Keeneland.
In last Friday’s third race at Woodbine, Two Tribes (3rd) and Maritimeconnection (5th) both picked up cheques. However, Friday’s eighth race featured the only win from a Plate nominee last week as Circle of Friends dueled to a head score over City Boy. Other Plate nominees in the five furlong Tapeta sprint included Silent Jimmie (5th), Discreet Dan (7th), courtly Manner (8th) and Rock You (9th).
A number of key contenders popped up on the work tab last week including:
Conquest Vivi breezed four furlongs in :47.80 on April 27 over the Woodbine Tapeta. Rank 6/24
King and His Court breezed five furlongs in 1:01.20 on April 27 on the Woodbine Tapeta. Rank 9/16
Clutch Catch breezed four furlongs in :47.60 on April 25 on the Woodbine Tapeta. Rank 2/7
Escondera breezed five furlongs in 1:00.60 on April 23 on the Keeneland All Weather. Rank 6/10
Tiz a Slam breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 on April 23 on the Keeneland All Weather. Rank 2/10
Guy Caballero breezed five furlongs in 1:00 flat on April 22 on the Woodbine Tapeta. Rank 2/86
State of Honor, prepping for the Kentucky Derby, breezed five furlongs in 1:01.60 on April 21 over the Churchill Downs dirt. Rank 21/40
State of Honor is headed to the Kentucky Derby…
Updated Top 5 Queen’s Plate Contenders as selected by @TripleDeadHeat
Horse / Trainer / Owner
1. Tiz a Slam / Roger Attfield / Chiefswood Stable
2. State of Honor / Mark Casse / Conrad Farms
3. Channel Maker / Dan Vella / Joey Gee Thoroughbreds and Wachtel Stable
4. Inflexibility / Chad Brown / Klaravich Stables, Inc. William H. Lawrence
5. King and His Court / Mark Casse / Gary Barber and Wachtel Stable
The 158th running of The Queen’s Plate, the 1 1/4-mile classic which carries a $1 million purse, is set for Sunday, July 2. For more information on North America’s oldest continuously-run stakes event and first jewel in Canada’s Triple Crown of Racing, visit QueensPlate.com.