Raiders from California and New York won the two big supporting events Sunday on the Woodbine turf course near Toronto but Rahy's Attorney rallied at long odds to carry the day for the home team in the day's biggest event.
Starting at odds of better than 12-1 in the $1 million (Canadian) Woodbine Mile, Rahy's Attorney stayed close behind the early pace, advanced to the leaders on the turn and then took command in the stretch, winning by 1 1/4 lengths over Ventura, a California-based filly. Just Rushing made the early lead and held on for third.
The odds-on favorite and reigning Breeders' Cup Mile champion Kip Deville was tightly held in second place behind a quick pace. But when he was asked by jockey Cornelio Velasquez, he had nothing left in the stretch run.
Rahy's Attorney, under jockey Slade Callaghan, ran the 1 mile on yielding turf in 1:36.14. He is a 4-year-old, Ontario-bred gelding by Crown Attorney out of the Rahy mare Rahy's Hope. Ian Black is the trainer.
"This is a tremendous effort against Kip Deville," said Callaghan. "I thought he (Kip Deville) was heads and tails above the rest of the field in here. But my horse had home advantage."
Rahy's Attorney came into the Mile off three losing efforts, all at longer distances. Asked if this result proved the gelding is a miler, Black said, "I think he must be. I was trying to make him something else."
Since the Woodbine Mile was one of the Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" races, Rahy's Attorney earned a berth into the Breeders' Cup Mile. Because he is not nominated to the series, however, his owners would have to put up a supplemental fee of $180,000 to enter.
Other races with potential implications for the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita on Oct. 24-25:
$3 million Emirates Airline Turf
California-based Champs Elysees snapped a four-race losing streak and picked up his second North American win, surviving a five-horse charge to the wire in Sunday's $750,000 (Canadian) Northern Dancer Turf Stakes at Woodine. The photo showed the 5-year-old, British-bred son of Danehill a nose better than Quijano with Seaside Retreat third, another 1/2 length back. Marsh Side in fourth and Spice Route in fifth were only a neck and another neck farther back. Champs Elysees, with Garrett Gomez riding for trainer Bobby Frankel, covered the 1 1/2 miles on yielding turf in 2:32.02. In his last previous start, over yielding ground at Monmouth Park, Champs Elysees finished sixth, beaten only 3 1/2 lengths. The race may have been a prep for the $2 million (Canadian) Pattison Canadian International on Oct. 4. "I don't see why not," said Lord Grimthorpe, racing manager for Juddmonte Farms, owner of Champs Elysees. "Obviously, Bobby will want to see how he comes out of the race. But he goes well on this turf course."
Karnsis, rallying from well back in the field, won Sunday's Mercedes-Benz Grosser Preis von Baden at Baden-Baden by 2 1/2 lenghts over Adlerflug. It's Gino was well back in third. Trainer Peter Schiergen said if Karnsis, a 3-year-old son of Samum, runs again this year, it would be at Cologne in three weeks' time or "a race abroad" -- apparently the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe Oct. 5 at Longchamp.
$2 million Ladies' Classic
The rains came to Belmont Park before Saturday's $300,000 Ruffian Handicap and morning-line favorite Indian Blessing departed, leaving trainer Bob Baffert to saddle only Tough Tiz's Sis. No problem, as the 4-year-old Tiznow filly proceeded to romp to a 12 1/4-lengths victory through the slop. Copper State rallied to finish second and Stage Luck was third. Tough Tiz's Sis, with Edgar Prado up, ran the 1 1/16 miles in 1:40.46. Baffert said by phone from California he scratched Indian Blessing, who has had distance problems this year, "because she doesn't need to run that long. We talked it over and we decided to keep her in the short game. That's what she does best. Of course, I would have felt bad if this one didn't win because I scratched Indian Blessing." He said he told Prado, "Be sure to keep this filly's face clean. She doesn't like dirt in her face. Last year at the Breeders' Cup, she got caught in behind horses and had dirt in her face and it was a complete disaster."
$1 million Emirates Airline Filly & Mare Turf
J'ray posted a mild upset in Sunday's $300,000 (Canadian) Canadian Stakes at Woodbine, rallying from last of 11 to win by 1 length over Callwood Dancer. The favorite, Sealy Hill, also rallied from far back but her rail bid fell short and she settled for third. J'ray, a 5-year-old, New York-bred mare by Distant View, ran the 9 furlongs on yielding turf in 1:51.86 with Joe Bravo in the irons for trainer Todd Pletcher. It was the second straight win for the New York-based mare, following an off-the-pace victory in the Matchmaker at Monmouth Park a month ago. She now has nine wins for 23 lifetime starts and Bravo said the filly has really "come into herself. I'd say this filly has really got good," said Bravo. "This little filly relaxed back there. She saved all her energy until the turn for home. She exploded and really showed her true colors."
Backseat Rhythm rallied five-wide into the stretch in Saturday's $250,000 Garden City Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Belmont Park and got up to win by 1/2 length over Pure Clan. Ariege was third. The stewards disallowed a claim of foul before making the result official. Backseat Rhythm, a Kentucky-bred daughter of El Corredor, finished the 9 furlongs on yielding turf in 1:51.82. Javier Castellano rode for trainer Patrick Reynolds. Castellano said Backseat Rhythm "loved the yielding course. I think this is the best going for her." Reynolds said he is thinking of the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at Keeneland Oct. 11. "I hear that when you're invited to the Queen Elizabeth II, they give you a free meal," Reynolds said. "I'm a sucker for that, so we'll see what happens."
Closeout raced near the back of a 13-filly field through much of Saturday's $200,000 Pucker Up Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Arlington Park, then swept around her rivals into the stretch and was just up in time to win by 1/2 length. Pace-setter Lucky Copy was second and Clear Pond was third. Closeout, a Florida-bred daughter of Repriced, ran the 1 1/8 miles on soft turf in 1:53.22, picking up her fourth win in seven starts. Jamie Theriot had the mount for trainer Tom Proctor. "The distance was a big plus," Theriot said. "The further she goes the better she's going to be. The other horse (Lucky Copy) had a lot of speed and she was stopping the last eighth of a mile and my filly was just getting moving."
In France, Goldikova defeated Darjina by 1/2 length in Sunday's Prix du Moulin de Longchamp. Well behind the two fillies in fifth was Henrythenavigator, defeated for the first time this year. Trainer Freddie Head said he plans to send Goldikova to the Breeders' Cup for either the Filly & Mare Sprint or the Filly & Mare Turf. He said he feels she will run a distance of ground, based on her third-place finish in the French Oaks. Both Darjina and Henrythenavigator may be headed to the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot.
$1 million Sentient Flight Group Filly & Mare Sprint
Akronism got to the longshot pace-setting Marina Ballerina in the final sixteenth of Saturday's $150,000 (Canadian) Seaway Stakes and went on to win by 1 length. Executive Flight finished third. Akronism, a 4-year-old, Kentucky-bred Not For Love filly, ran the 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:21.51 with Eurico Da Silva in the irons for trainer Tim Ritchey. Patrick Lawley-Wakelin, racing manager for owner-breeder Robert Evans, said Akronism may be pointed towards the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint. "I thought we were taking a big shot today," Lawley-Wakelin said. "The filly obviously has tremendous quality and the (Breeders' Cup) is where Mr. Ritchey wants to go. I think she deserves a shot, without any doubt."
Sweet Hope dueled for the lead in the early furlongs of Saturday's $200,000 Endine Handicap at Delaware Park, then took charge. After opening a comfortable lead, the 3-year-old Lemon Drop Kid filly held on to win by 1/2 length over Cash's Girl. Hungarian Boatbaby floated in third as the 6 furlongs went in 1:10.07 over a sloppy track. Gabriel Saez rode the winner for trainer J. Larry Jones. It was the Sweet Hope's first race against older rivals and her fourth win from 12 starts.
$2 million Bessemer Trust Juvenile
Midshipman caught Coronet of a Baron in the closing yards to win Wednesday's $250,000 Del Mar Futurity. Street Hero was third and the favorite, Canadian invader Southern Exchange, finished fourth. Midshipman, a Stonerside Stable homebred son of Unbridled's Song, ran the 7 furlongs in 1:23.35 under Tyler Baze. He came into the race after winning his first career outing Aug. 17. "We didn't even know if he could run until his first gate work down here," said winning trainer Bob Baffert. "You know, they really start developing and getting fit this time of year. What he showed today was terrific talent, and Tyler rode him great." Baze added, "He's something. And he'll run all day -- as far as they want."
Big Drama ran by the leader in the stretch drive of Saturday's $150,000 Affirmed Division of the Florida Stallion Stakes and won by 3 1/2 lengths over Three Park Harmony. The favorite, You Luckie Mann, the early pace-setter, faded to finish third. Big Drama, a Montbrook colt, ran the 7 furlongs in 1:24.71 for jockey Pascacio Lopez. Big Drama now has won the first two legs of the Florida Stallion Series and trainer David Fawkes said the final leg of that event, the In Reality Divison Oct. 18, is his goal. "With his pedigree and the way he handles himself, I'm very confident he'll go a distance," Fawkes said.
This One's for Phil rallied easily in the stretch Saturday to win the $60,000 Seacliff Stakes at Calder Race Course by 4 1/2 lengths over the favorite, March Twelfth. Stately Character was third. This One's for Phil, a Florida-bred gelding by Untuttable, ran 1 mile in 1:41.26 with Wilmer Galviz up.
$1 million Grey Goose Juvenile Turf
Code Runner came from near the rear to win Saturday's $60,000 Fasig Tipton Turf Dash at Calder Race Course by 1 length over the favorite, Silver Bayer. Little Richie was third. Code Runner, a Florida-bred colt by Omega Code, ran the 5 furlongs on firm turf in 58.05 seconds with Eduardo Nunez up.
$2 million Bessemer Trust Juvenile Fillies
C.S. Silk got the early lead in Saturday's $150,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie at Arlington Park and drew off in the stretch to win by 6 lengths. Quite the Lady provided quite the payoff in second, as did Phola for show money. C.S. Silk, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Medaglia d'Oro, finished the 1 mile on the all-weather track in 1:36.38 with Robby Albarado riding for trainer Dale Romans. "She was going fast," Romans said. "But if Robby had her doing that, he must have felt she was doing it comfortably. It was a big race for her. If everything keeps going the way it has for her, the Breeders' Cup is where we are pointing."
Aroma de Mujer led most of the way in Saturday's $150,000 Susan's Girl Division of the Florida Stallion Stakes at Calder Race Course, rebuffed a challenge from favorite La Chica Sensual in the stretch and held on to win by a head. Trippi's Greatstar was third, another neck back. Aroma de Mujer, a Trippi filly, ran the 7 furlongs in 1:26.38 with Manuel Aguilar up for trainer Walter Rosas-Canessa. "This is a classy filly," the trainer said. "She has natural speed, but I'm also training her to close. Believe me, I wasn't worried in the stretch." He said Aroma de Mujer will move on to the My Dear Girl Divison of the Stallion Stakes on Oct. 18.
Got Clearance got clearance early in Saturday's $60,000 Lindsay Frolic Stakes at Calder Race Course and no one came to challenge. At the wire, the New York-bred Cryptoclearance filly was 4 1/2 lengths in front, with Jungle Jill second and Bridge to Gold third. Got Clearance, with Maylan Studart up, ran the 1 mile on a fast track in 1:41.57.
Dash Dot Dash led from gate to wire in Saturday's $65,000 Bustles and Bows Stakes for 2-year-old fillies at Fairplex Park in California, winning by 3 lengths over Chilliwack. Amina was third. Dash Dot Dash, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Put It Back, ran the 6 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:18.54. Martin Pedroza rode for trainer Vladimir Cerin.
$1 million Grey Goose Juvenile Fillies Turf
My Sweetest Natalie was quickly on the lead in Saturday's $60,000 Catcharisingstar Stakes at Calder Race Course and went on to win by 4 lengths despite drifting out late. Master Tricky was second and Forest Grinder was third. My Sweetest Natalie, a California-bred miss by Bring the Heat, ran the 5 furlongs on firm turf in 57.48 seconds with Pascacio Lopez in the irons.
Delightful Kiss rallied through the stretch in Saturday's $100,000 Turfway Park Fall Championship and went on to the upset win by 1 1/4 lengths over Star Plus. Dominican was third. Delightful Kiss, earning an automatic berth in the Breeders' Cup, finished the 1 1/2 miles on the all-weather track in 2:32.25. Calvin Borel rode for trainer Pete Anderson. Delightful Kiss is a 4-year-old, Florida-bred gelding by Kissin Kris. Delightful Kiss comprises Anderson's entire stable. He trains Delightful Kiss for Jack Dreyfus' Hobeau Farm. "He's my big horse," said Anderson. "I got the best one-horse stable in America. I am confident in this horse. I just think he's a real top horse. If he couldn't run this distance, I'm not bowlegged. I'm ready for California." Anderson, a former jockey whose accomplishments included riding Forego in his first 11 races, including the 1973 Kentucky Derby, said he plans to give Delightful Kiss one more start before the Breeders' Cup and would like to make it the Hawthorne Gold Cup, which he won in 1966 aboard Bold Bidder. "I'd like to go give that race a shot with this horse," he said.
In other weekend racing:
Shopton Lane led all the way to a smart, 3-lengths victory over Indy Wind in Saturday's $70,000 Formal Gold Stakes. Rikman was third and Sinners N Saints completed the order of finish. Shopton Lane, a 4-year-old, Florida-bred colt by Quiet American, ran the 1 1/16 miles on a sloppy track in 1:43.86 with Jose Lezcano aboard.
Sunday's $65,000 Restoration Stakes for 3-year-olds came off the turf and five of the original eight contenders came out of the race. Power Game was best of the remaining starters, rallying from last to win by 4 1/4 lengths over early leader Meal Penalty. Pascal tracked the pace, then had to settle for third. Power Game, a Kentucky-bred Dixie Union colt, ran the 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:43.59 with Elvis Trujillo riding.
Pyramyst got past the early leader, All Night Labor, in the late going in Saturday's $100,000 George Rosenberger Memorial for fillies and mares at Delaware Park, then edged clear to win by 1 1/4 lengths. All Night Labor held second, well clear of Sagamoon. Pyramyst, a 6-year-old, Kentucky-bred mare by Pyramid Peak, ran the 1 1/16 miles on a sloppy track in 1:45.97. Eight of the original entrants were scratched when the race came off the turf.
P V Lightening drew clear in the stretch run of Saturday's $100,000 DTHA Owners' Day Handicap and went on to win by 7 3/4 lengths over Better Than Bonds. Solar Flare was another 6 1/2 lengths back as the photo finish camera took a break. P V Lightening, a 4-year-old, Maryland-bred gelding by Sultry Song, ran the 1 1/8 miles on a sloppy track in 1:49.98. Five were scratched because of the wet conditions.
Test Boy rallied from last of four to win Saturday's $100,000 (Canadian) Speed to Spare Stakes by 1/2 length over the heavy favorite and two-time Sovereign Award winner True Metropolitan. Beau Brass was third and Bear Character completed the order of finish. Test Boy, with Rickey Walcott aboard, closed into a slow pace to finish the 1 3/8 miles on a fast track in 2:18.8.
Merchant Marine sailed home a 1 1/4-lengths winner in Sunday's $75,000 Devil Diver Stakes. Gold Trippi was second and Silver Stetson Man third. Merchant Marine, a 4-year-old, Kentucky-bred gelding by Tiznow, ran the 7 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:27.62. John Velazquez was up.
Freesgood rallied by pace-setting Tice in the late going in Saturday's $65,000 Shepherd Stakes, winning by 1/2 length. Gregorian Bay finished third. Freesgood, a 4-year-old, Cal-bred son of Free House, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:44.22.
Cattleman Prospect came from off the pace to win Saturday's $60,000 E.T. Springer Stakes for New Mexico-breds by 1 3/4 lengths over Romeos Wilson. Bob's Banjo strummed in third. Cattleman Prospect, a 7-year-old Prospector Jones gelding, ran the 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:23.3 under Ricardo Jaime.
Calder Race Course
Yesbyjimminy, the odds-on favorite, was just up in time to win Sunday's $55,000 Whippleton Stakes by a neck over pace-setting Machismo. Dukes Flying Tiger finished third. Yesbyjimminy, a 4-year-old, Florida-bred son of Yes It's True, ran the 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:10.75 with Pascacio Lopez up.
Atlantic Paws was bumped at the start of Sunday's $55,000 Puck Stakes for 3-year-olds, then bore out during the final furlong while extending his margin to win by 4 1/2 lengths over Unbridled Heat. Wise Answer was third after making the early lead. Atlantic Paws, a Florida-bred son of Cat Thief, ran the 1 mile and 70 yards on a fast track in 1:44.34, also with Lopez in the irons.
Snoose Goose ran down the leaders six-wide in the stretch run of Saturday's $50,000 Honor Glide Stakes for 3-year-olds and drew off to win by 3 lengths. Sr. Henry finished second but was disqualified to fourth for bumping in the stretch. That advanced Attempted Humor to second and Robscarvic to third. Snoose Goose, a Virginia-bred colt by Aptitude, ran the 1 1/8 miles on soft turf in 1:54.06.
Miss Charm City took command in the stretch run of Saturday's $50,000 Gin Talking Stakes for Maryland-bred, 2-year-old fillies, drawing off to win by 6 3/4 lengths over Charles Town shipper Lemeaskuaquestion. Graceful Ginger was third. Miss Charm City, a daughter of Bowman's Band, finished the 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:06.87 over a sloppy track. Trainer Carlos Garcia said she will go next in the $150,000 Maryland Million Lassie at Laurel Park Oct. 4.
Stop a Train got rolling down the stretch in Saturday's $50,000 Central Iowa Stakes for fillies and mares and got home first, 1 length ahead of Amazing Speed. Celeritas was third. Stop a Train, a 5-year-old, Illinois-bred mare by Devil His Due, ran the 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:43.84 under Perry Compton.
News and notes: William S. Farish Jr. was unanimously re-elected Breeders' Cup Chairman Friday. R.D. Hubbard was unanimously elected vice chairman. The Breeders' Cup Board also agreed to a three-year renewal of its commitment to help fund the Equine Drug Research Institute of the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation.