TORONTO, July 23, 2022 – Mark Casse trainee Filo Di Arianna (BRZ) kept his Woodbine unbeaten streak intact, taking the Grade 2 $179,300 Connaught Cup on Saturday at the Toronto oval.
With Luis Contreras aboard, Filo Di Arianna, the slight 2-1 choice, broke running and quickly assumed command of the seven-furlong grass feature, as multiple graded stakes winner Silent Poet, to the outside, and longshot Vanbrugh, to the inside, kept close tabs on the pacesetter through an opening quarter timed in :23.19.
The six-year-old son of Drosselmeyer-Principessa Capri (BRZ) was still running comfortably on the lead as Silent Poet, still second, and Vanbrugh, in third, continued to track the frontrunner through a half reached in :46.25.
As the field headed into the turn for home, Contreras and Filo Di Arianna were still in charge, as a host of horses began to launch their bids down the lane.
Ahead by a length at the stretch call, Filo Di Arianna easily fended off his rivals, crossing the line a 2 ½ length winner. March to the Arch completed a one-two Casse finish, nosing out Silent Poet for second spot. Chewing Gum was fourth.
The final time over firm going was 1:20.36.
Contreras, aboard the chestnut for the first time, took over from leading rider Kazushi Kimura, who was injured in the seventh race on Friday’s card.
“My agent mentioned it [getting the call] this morning,” said Contreras, who won last year’s running with Avie’s Flatter. “I was so happy, but sorry for Kazushi. I hope he’s okay and hopefully he can come back soon.”
The veteran rider was thrilled with the effort of the horse owned by Gary Barber, Wachtel Stable and Peter Deutsch, who is now a perfect three-for-three at Woodbine, including a win last time out, on July 3, over seven panels on the Tapeta.
“He’s just a great horse and I’m so thankful Mark gave me the confidence to be on him today,” offered Contreras.
Filo Di Arianna, bred by Stud Principessa di Capri, is now 6-0-0 from eight career starts.
He paid $6.80, $4.20 and $3.40. March to the Arch ($6.70, $5) rounded out a $43.30 exactor. Silent Poet ($4.50) completed a $194.40 triactor, while a $1 superfecta with Chewing Gum returned $619.10. Avie’s Flatter, Turn of Events, Tap It to Win, and Wedgewood were scratched.
Live Thoroughbred racing resumes at Woodbine on Sunday, Woodbine Oaks Presented by Budweiser day, with post time set for 1:00 p.m.