FIELD FOR THE GRADE 1 RICOH WOODBINE MILE (12)
POST / HORSE / JOCKEY / TRAINER
1 / World Approval / Mark Casse / John Velazquez
2 / Tower of Texas /Roger Attfield / Eurico Rosa da Silva
3 / Long On Value / Bill Mott / Joel Rosario
4 / Best Bard / Norm McKnight / Rafael Hernandez
5 / Dragon Bay Stuart Simon / Gary Boulanger
6 / Deauville / Aidan O’Brien / Jamie Spencer
7 / Conquest Panthera / Mark Casse / Patrick Husbands
8 / Mondialiste / David O’Meara / Jose Ortiz
9 / Arod / David Simcock / Harry Bentley
10/ Lancaster Bomber / Aidan O’Brien / Wayne Lordan
11/ Dutch Connection / Charlie Hills / Mickael Barzalona
12/ Glenville Gardens / Sid Attard / Luis Contreras
MONDIALISTE IN FINE FORM FOR O’MEARA
Geoff and Sandra Turnbull’s Mondialiste has settled in nicely on his second trip to Canada. Rather than train on the turf earlier this morning, trainer David O’Meara decided a move over the Tapeta would better suit the seven-year-old son of Galileo.
“I thought the turf was quite quick this morning, and although he’ll run on it on Saturday he doesn’t need to train on it. He trains on Tapeta a lot at home anyway,” said O’Meara. “He just did a nice, swinging canter from the half-mile pole. He looks good.”
Mondialiste, the 2015 Ricoh Woodbine Mile champ, is listed at 8-1 on the morning line coming off a flat sixth in the Group 3 Strensall at York. However, O’Meara points to the bay’s strong second, defeated just a nose, in the Group 2 Sky Bet York S. as a better measure of form.
“His run before last at York would have been as good as anything he’s produced in Europe,” said O’Meara. “Last time out, it was a very muddling gallop. They went quite steady.
“Back here at Woodbine, with the turns, I think he’ll show his true self.”
Jose Ortiz will pilot Mondialiste for the first time in Saturday’s ‘Breeders’ Cup Win and You’re In’ Ricoh Woodbine Mile.
AROD SETTLING IN WELL AHEAD OF SECOND MILE TRY
Qatar Racing Ltd.’s Arod will look to improve on last year’s fifth in the Ricoh Woodbine Mile when he bursts from the gate for the first time under the tutelage of trainer David Simcock.
The six-year-old Teofilo bay was in the care of Peter Chapple-Hyam when a prominent fifth behind a victorious Tepin in the 2016 Mile. Arod then spent time in Australia under the care of Chris Waller, managing a pair of seconds in six starts.
Travelling head lad Ian Russell is overseeing Arod’s second visit to Canada.
“I think day two is really good for him. Yesterday he was a little bit keen, but with new surroundings it’s something you’d expect,” said Russell. “Today, he was much more relaxed and got into a really nice stride during his canter work. We’re very happy with him.”
Russell believes the fast ground at Woodbine should suit Arod.
“I walked the straight yesterday afternoon. There’s a great covering of grass, you can tell it’s always well looked after here. With the good weather we’re having, it’s nice there’s a little bit of cushion to it,” said Russell.
Harry Bentley, making his first trip to Canada, will be charged with engineering a stalking trip.
“I think if we can get him to settle and just take the race in his stride, we’ll probably just be patient with him and let everyone else do the work at the front,” said Russell. “Hopefully, with a bit of luck, he’ll pick them off one by one.”
HAWKBILL SET TO FLY IN NORTHERN DANCER STAKES
Hawkbill, a Group 1 winner who is based in England, looms as the horse to beat in a field of eight for Sunday’s Northern Dancer, a second Grade 1 feature on the Ricoh Woodbine Mile card.
The $300,000 Northern Dancer, a 1 ½-mile turf race for three-year-olds and upward, is the major local prep for the Grade 1, $800,000 Pattison Canadian International over the same course and distance here October 15.
Assuming all goes well on Saturday, Hawkbill will be staying for that race.
“That’s been the plan,” said Sophie Chretien, head traveling lass for Hawkbill’s trainer Charlie Appleby.
Hawkbill, a Kentucky-bred four-year-old colt, races for Godolphin. His last five starts have come at 1 ½ miles and include victories in the Group 2 Princess of Wales’s at Newmarket over good going and the Group 3 Aston Park over soft ground at Newbury.
In his last start, Hawkbill was beaten a length as the runner-up in the Group 1 Grosser Preis Von Berlin at Hoppegarten. Dschingis Secret, the winner there, came back to capture the Group 2 Prix Foy at Longchamp.
“He goes every ground, but his best ground is very soft to soft,” said Chretien. “Fast ground is not going to help him but he’s a classy horse.
“He likes to go on front,” said Chretien. “But mainly, he likes to be in his rhythm. He’ll settle in behind.”
Read the full preview at this link.
A FITTING CANADIAN DEBUT FOR QUIDURA
The consistent European-bred filly Quidura will make her Canadian debut in the $250,000 Canadian Stakes (Grade 2) featured on the Ricoh Woodbine Mile undercard this Saturday afternoon. The turf event for fillies and mares three years old and up will be contested over about 1-1/8 miles.
Owned by Gestuet Faehrhof, Quidura has never missed the board in five North American starts for trainer Graham Motion. She ended the 2016 season with back-to-back wins including the Pin Oak Valley View Stakes (Gr. 3) at Keeneland. This year, she finished third in the Coolmore Jenny Wiley Stakes (Gr. 1) at Keeneland followed by runner-up finishes in the New York S. Presented by NYRA Bets (Gr. 2) at Belmont and Diana Stakes (Gr. 1), in which she was collared by star filly Lady Eli after leading most of the 1-1/8 mile on the Saratoga turf.
“She’s run up against some pretty solid competition,” said Motion. “It was kind of an odd race in the Diana, when she ended up on the lead. That wasn’t necessarily the plan, but she almost pulled it off. She got a break in the weights that day against Lady Eli.”
Read the full preview at this link.
FIRST EVER NYRA/WOODBINE PICK-5 OFFERED ON WOODBINE MILE CARD
An innovative joint Pick-5 wager in partnership with the New York Racing Association to be offered on Saturday’s lucrative Ricoh Woodbine Mile card.
Featuring a horseplayer friendly 15% takeout and offering a $0.20 minimum entry point, the cross-border Pick-5 will feature three turf stakes from Woodbine and two turf events from Belmont Park.
Race Order for the Pick 5 sequence is as follows: Woodbine Race 8 – G2 Canadian Stakes (4:30pm ET), Belmont Race 7 – Allowance (4:41pm ET), Woodbine Race 10 – G1 Northern Dancer (5:34pm ET), Belmont Race 9 – G2 Sands Point (5:45pm ET), Woodbine Race 12 – G1 Woodbine Mile (6:34pm ET)
The Woodbine/NYRA Pick-5 will be available in Canada on HPIbet and on ADW platforms and select locations across the U.S.