#8 Moira 5-2 stamped herself as the Queen’s Plate favourite with her eye-catching dominating win in the Woodbine Oaks, after some pre-race antics which involved her hind shoes being removed. This talented filly left no questions about her athleticism as she was able to overcome circumstances in which she had every excuse to not perform her best. She is making the third start of her current form cycle which I believe was by design as this race was the goal all along. She is bred for the distance. While it may be a question for others, Sister Seagull who was a distant second to her in the Oaks, came back to win the Bison City Stakes, further flattering her form. Importantly, Rafael Hernandez had his choice and he sided here.
#11 Causin Mayhem 6-1 ran a sneaky good race last out, first time over the surface and stretching out again which he has been doing slightly every race, found himself being the pressured pacesetter, looked defeated in the lane then fought back gamely to finish third. He should take a step forward, and in a field lacking speed or jockeys trying to rate their horses, he just may have command of the race and try to wire them. He will have a different jockey again and has never had the same pilot in his short career.
#10 Sir for Sure 8-1 cannot be missed. He is a large, strong-looking individual and showed his talent in winning the Plate Trial with a wide trip the whole way at a massive price. Distance was the key to this highly touted Casse entrant, the Queenston was too short for him which threw many supporters off his trail. Both of his wins have come at routing. He is also making third start of his current form cycle, could be sitting on a peak effort as I don’t think he was all out in his last.
#6 Rondure 3-1 has also had some eye-catching races including his last in the Grade 3 Marine Stakes. However, that was 7 weeks ago. He will be coming into the Queen’s Plate fresh after his career-best effort in which he showed a completely different running style by sitting much closer to the pace. Adaptability is important given pace conditions and how it unfolds. My concern with him is that this is only his second time going long and farther than the Marine Stakes, I don’t think he will get the same trip as last out. Concerned that he may have run his peak effort in the Marine.
#9 Hunt Master 30-1 is making his stakes debut which seems to be a real stretch on paper. However, last out against older company he was flying down the lane after a troubled start and almost caught the winner Canadian Pharoah, who will be competing in the Turf Endurance Series in Race 7, so keep an eye on that race as could provide insight into this fella’s form. Distance should be no issues with this steadily improving gelding who looks to fly under the radar at a whopping price.
My wagers for the Queen’s Plate will be simple. I plan on keying Moira hoping to get a few prices underneath in both the exacta and trifecta as I am anticipating she will be the favourite, however many will try to beat her so keep an eye on the odds.
I will single her in my p5 as follows starting Race 6: 5,11,12/4,6/2,3,7/2,3,7,8/8. Now I may use more in Race 6 to start will depend on scratches and weather as they are calling for rain Sunday which as you know will favour some horses on the turf more than others, so I will amend on my Twitter handle sheri@gofilly on race day as well as post what tickets I play.
Good luck everyone and as always safe trips for all!
Sheri Riddoch for Woodbine Communications