TORONTO, July 12, 2020 – Track announcer Robert Geller comments on some of the performances that caught his eye in this regular segment, highlighting horses to key in on for upcoming races at Woodbine.
SPEEDY MOONLITE (June 28, Race 6, No. 6, 2nd)
First-time starter Speedy Moonlite went down fighting in his debut as runner-up to the experienced Speedy Hans after having duelled with race favourite Bend in the River, who finished a fading fourth. Trip handicappers will also note that the well-supported Last American Exit appeared to lose his position mid-race before rallying to third. Nothing, however, should be taken away from Speedy Moonlite, who got loose behind the Standardbred paddock on his way to the gate. A son of Souper Speedy in the barn of Paul Buttigieg, Speedy Moonlite went off at odds of 10-1 and held on well for second at the end of the 5-1/2 furlongs on a day when nearly all winners came from off the pace.
ENGLISH CONQUEROR (July 5, Race 6, No. 10, 3rd)
In one of the more thrilling races on the program, three-year-old English Conqueror debuted from the outside post on turf at seven furlongs against what looked to be a decent field, finishing third. The eventual winner, four-year-old Unilateral, an expensive son of Curlin, came from way out of it to nose out Strike the Top, who also emerged from the back of the field in deep stretch. Given the pace meltdown, English Conqueror fought on really well to finish just 2-1/2 lengths behind them and to beat home Muskoka Giant. English Conqueror, by English Channel, showed his liking for the turf and should be suited over more ground. Trainer Darwin Banach appears to have options with the Ontario-bred, who would not have to improve much from that first start to break his maiden allowance.
Follow Geller on Twitter @WoodbineGeller for more insights on racing at Woodbine.