Ricoh Woodbine Mile Notes for Wednesday, September 11, 2013

September 11, 2013

Ricoh Woodbine Mile Notes for Wednesday, September 11, 2013

EARLY LOOK AT SUNDAY’S RICOH WOODBINE MILE (6)
Horse/Owner/Trainer/Jockey
Dimension/Riverside Bloodstock LLC/Conor Murphy/David Moran
Excaper/Richard Kaster & Frederick Wieting/Ian Black/Luis Contreras
Riding the River/Dominion Bloodstock, HGHR & Linmac Farms/Dave Cotey/Todd Kabel
Trade Storm/Qatar Racing Ltd./David Simcock/TBA
Wise Dan/Morton Fink/Charles LoPresti/John Velazquez
Za Approval/Live Oak Plantation/Christophe Clement/Garrett Gomez
MORE WISE DAN! A HANDS-ON APPROACH FOR LOPRESTI
In an age of ‘super trainers’ such as Todd Pletcher, Steve Asmussen and Woodbine’s own Mark Casse, each overseeing a significant number of horses across a variety of tracks at any given time, Charles LoPresti, conditioner of Horse of the Year Wise Dan, is something of a throwback.
Despite an abundance of recent high-profile success in graded events with Wise Dan, Successful Dan and Turallure, LoPresti is content to oversee his current 30 head of horses in training with no designs on increasing the fold.
“I get people calling me all the time about sending me horses and it probably hurts me because I don’t travel in the winter time to Florida, Louisiana or Oaklawn,” said LoPresti.
The hands-on horseman got his start at Belmont Park working for trainer Joe Cantey best known as the conditioner of 1980 Belmont Stakes winner Temperence Hill, before moving on to Domino Stud in Lexington to work under renowned horseman Ted Carr.
He would work for about six years as assistant manager under Carr at Allen Paulson’s Brookside Farm in Lexington.
LoPresti left to start developing Forest Lane, a 200-acre farm in Lexington, Kentucky, during which time he also served as trainer for Calumet Farm for whom he won four stakes races over a six-year period of time, obtaining his trainer’s licence in 1993.
While prospective owners might now be clamouring for LoPresti’s attention, the affable trainer is more comfortable rolling up his sleeves and getting down to the business of developing young horses.
“Right now we’re breaking 15 babies and in the winter time I want to concentrate on my young horses and try and get them ready so I have some horses for next year and years down the road," said LoPresti. "I’m a trainer that breaks and starts them along ourselves. It’s not like we have horses that have breezed a half-mile at some training centre in Florida and will be ready to run in 60 days. I like to do that myself and it enables me to do what I want and develop young horses as well.”
TRADE STORM BLOWS INTO TORONTO FOR RICOH WOODBINE MILE
Qatar Racing’s Trade Storm, trained by David Simcock, arrived from England on Tuesday, ready to take on Wise Dan and other rivals in the $1 million Ricoh Woodbine Mile Sunday at Woodbine.
The five-year-old British-bred son of Trade Fair-Frisson has certainly battled some of the best this year in England and Dubai, horses like top three-year-olds Toronado and Dawn Approach and older horses like Declaration Of War, Sajjhaa, The Apache and Afsare without being disgraced.
“He’s been running up against some very talented animals. What I’ve been delighted with is his consistency all year. He’s carried a penalty (more weight) in the majority of his races but he’s run at a very good level,” said Simcock, who came to Woodbine two years ago with a filly named I’m A Dreamer and just missed winning the E.P. Taylor Stakes.
“He’s run against some outstanding three-year-olds. The one thing we haven’t had for him that he really wants is a flat-turning track, which he’ll have at Woodbine and which is similar to Meydan. He’s been running on undulating tracks.”
Trade Storm, a winner five times in 26 outings and almost $700,000 in earnings, has been on the go since January in Dubai, winning two of four races there, getting a two month break, then campaigning in England during the summer. He comes into the Ricoh Woodbine Mile off a third-place finish in the Betfair Celebration Mile on August 24 at Goodwood to Afsare, who was runner-up last year to Little Mike in the Arlington Million.
RIDING THE RIVER FLOWS INTO RICOH WOODBINE MILE
Riding the River, a modest $3,500 purchase by trainer Dave Cotey at the 2008 Fasig-Tipton October yearling sale, will seek his fourth graded score in Sunday’s $1-million Ricoh Woodbine Mile.
Riding the River, a now six-year-old gelded son of Wiseman’s Ferry-Glow Ruby Go, started his career in the claiming ranks and fought his way up the ladder to become a bona fide contender.
"He’s saved our lives many times over," said Cotey of the diminutive bay who has banked $870,167 in a formidable career. "It picks up the whole barn when you have a nice horse like that and they’re very hard to come by. There are not too many horses around like him, paying just $3,500 for him and doing what he’s done the past three years. He’s a very important part of our stable and he’s not done yet. He’s got a lot of racing left in him."
Cotey, renowned for uncovering 2009 Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird, has a knack for finding value at the sales.
Mine That Bird won three stakes races at Woodbine in 2008 en route to winning a Sovereign Award as Canada’s top two-year-old. Cotey then sold the gelding privately following his score in the Grade 3 Grey Stakes.
"We paid $9,500 for Mine That Bird and just $3,500 for this fellow (Riding the River) and barring bad luck ‘River’ should also be a millionaire at some point," noted Cotey. "We’ve had a lot of horses, we didn’t pay much for that turned out to be decent horses. We paid $10,000 for Lady Shari (a multiple graded stakes winner) who made $500,000. Stage Classic (a multiple graded stakes winner) we paid $5500 for and he made $600,000. Dance to my Tune almost beat Zenyatta (in the 2010 Grade 1 Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap, at Santa Anita) and we bought her for $17,000 and she made $350,000 before we sold her."
On Sunday, Riding the River will set out to try and win Cotey his first Grade 1 event. The conditioner feels his charge is in perfect order.
"He came out of his last work superbly. If he goes into it on Sunday like he is right now, we’ll be happy campers," said Cotey.
SPORTSNET 360 TO AIR RICOH WOODBINE MILE
The 17th edition of the Ricoh Woodbine Mile is slated to go postward at 5:38 pm ET. Sportsnet 360 will provide special 90 minute live coverage of the racing extravaganza from Woodbine from 4:30 pm – 6:00 pm ET.
Jason Portuondo will host the telecast with Gemini Award recipient Jim Bannon providing the analysis. Sandy Hawley and Chad Rozema are the on-track reporters. Rob Platts is the producer and Kris Platts is the director. Dan Loiselle will call the action.
TVG, the prominent U.S. horse racing channel, will also offer coverage.
Features scheduled for the telecast include a piece on the owner’s of Riding The River and their success playing the horse game much like many play the stock market and a profile on trainer Ian Black who 5 years ago captured this race with longshot Rahy’s Attorney and now looks to return to the Ricoh Woodbine Mile winner’s circle with Excaper.
WOODBINE MILE DRAW AVAILABLE ON WEBSITE
A reminder that Thursday’s Woodbine Mile draw from the east-end VIP tent will be streamed live at www.woodbinemile.com. Further information and event details for Mile day are available there. The Twitter hashtag is #WOMile.
EARLY LOOK AT THE NORTHERN DANCER, PRESENTED BY VTECH (7)
Horse
FORTE DEI MARMI
HAMPSTEAD HEATH
HOTEP
IRISH MISSION
PERFECT TIMBER
STORMY LEN
TURKISH
EARLY LOOK AT THE CANADIAN STAKES (10), A BREEDERS’ CUP WAYI RACE
Horse
COLONIAL FLAG
LA TIA
LADYS FIRST
MERI SHIKA
MINAKSHI
MOMENT OF MAJESTY
NO EXPLAINING
PURE BLUE SKY
SOLID APPEAL
TANNERY
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