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2021 Yearling Sales Stakes At Woodbine

horse racing
Ademar Santos celebrates aboard Ironstone after winning the Simcoe Stakes
Date: 08/29/2021

On Sunday, Woodbine hosted its annual Yearling Sales Stakes day, stakes racess restricted to Canadian-breds who went through Woodbine's sales ring as yearlings. However unlike in past years the number of stakes offered was reduced to just 4, two for the juveniles and two for the 3-year-old divisions, all contested as Tapeta main track sprints. Conditions were tropical in Southern Ontario, with partly cloudy skies and a race time temperature of 31 C (88 F), feeling like 41 C (106 F) with the humidity, and with almost no wind. The 2021 Woodbine Yearling Sales take place this Wednesday, September 1 in the Woodbine sales pavilion.
horse racing
Ironstone wins the Simcoe Stakes

Closing out the weekend stakes action was the $200,000 Simcoe Stakes featuring a field of eleven 2-year-old males sprinting 6 1/2 furlongs on the Tapeta main track. Debut winner Chairman Bob was sent off as the 2-1 favorite over 9-4 second choice Ironstone, still a maiden after 2 starts, and 6-1 third choice Summer Sunset, also a maiden but 4th in the Victoria Stakes last out. Jockey Ademar Santos sent Ironstone to the front exiting the chute and he set fractions of 22.98 and 46.21 while pressed by 109-1 Section Ten and 17-2 Where's Neal. Turning for home, Ironstone left the field in his wake, drawing off to win by 8 1/2 lengths over Where's Neal in 1:16.61. It was another 3 1/4 lengths back to favorite Chairman Bob third.

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horse racinghorse racingLeft: Ironstone in the winner's circle. Winning trainer Willie Armata said, "It feels unbelievable. It's been a long time (since visiting the infield winner's circle). I remember telling Jason (Portuondo, Woodbine TV host), 'So far in my career this is one of the best horses I've ever trained' and he showed that today."  Jockey Ademar Santos said, "We put a lot of work into the horse. I knew the track wasn't playing to speed, but when I looked on the lead nobody wanted to go and so turning for home I had a ton of horse. He's just amazing." 

Right: Third place finisher and beaten favorite Chairman Bob returns to be unsaddled. The Kevin Attard trainee improved his record to 1 win and 1 third in 2 starts, earning $46,592 for owners Al and Bill Ulwelling.

Lorena wins the Algoma Stakes

Kicking off the stakes quartet, the $100,000 Algoma Stakes featured a field of 9 three-year-old fillies sprinting 7 furlongs. Fury Stakes winner and Woodbine Oaks 8th place finisher Lorena was sent off as the 3-4 favorite over 7-2 second choice Jilli Marie, 9th in the Woodbine Oaks, and 7-1 third choice Owen's Tour Guide, 3rd in an allowance last out. Jockey Ademar Santos sent Owen's Tour Guide to lead through fractions of 23.24 and 45.84 while pressed by 19-1 Fourteen Days and stalked by Lorena. Turning for home Owen's Tour Guide opened up a 5 length lead through 3/4 in 1:10.62 but tired in the final furlong. Lorena and jockey Gary Boulanger took over late and drew off to win by 1 1/4 lengths over late-running Jilli Marie in 1:23.79. It was a neck back to 24-1 Pemberley third.

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Winning jockey Gary Boulanger said, "She got a little rubbery, she didn't switch leads today, but she was running and I wasn't too concerned about it and felt like she was still underneath me and even the gallop out was still there. She's a pretty gutsy filly, she gives you everything she has." Co-owner and trainer Stuart Simon added, "She's just a plain, nice filly and we had a lot of reservations about running in the Oaks and it's the same old thing hindsight always easy. It was a very condensed schedule, she wasn't a real seasoned horse and hindsight is always easy, but we made the right decision to cut back today. She will win going two turns, but it'll be later on." 

horse racing
Secret Reserve wins the Elgin Stakes

The $100,000 Elgin Stakes featured a field of 7 three-year-old males sprinting 7 furlongs. Allowance winner Secret Reserve was sent off as the 3-5 favorite over 9-2 second choice Mason's Gamble, winner of his last 2 starts in allowance company. and 8-1 third choice Jelgo off his debut win. Jockey Sahin Sivaci sent Jelgo to the lead out of the chute through fractions of 23.12 and 45.85 while pressed by Mason's Gamble and stalked by Secret Reserve. Into the stretch jockey Rafael Hernandez sent Secret Reserve out wide to sweep to the front through 3/4 in 1:10.30. Kept to task by Hernandez, Secret Reserve drew off to win by 3 3/4 lengths in 1:22.30. It was another length back to Jelgo third.

Full results chart

Winning trainer Mike Mattine said, "Last year he was really on the muscle and showed a lot of speed. So, this year, I decided to take the blinkers off and bring him along slowly and in his morning works he would always start off slow and finish up really good and gallop out strong. His last two races have been almost a replica." Jockey Rafael Hernandez added, "He was perfect. Mike told me, 'Rafi, just try to follow a horse get him relaxed' and we got two good horses to make the pace for us and then he just come running. He was working good. That last work (bullet 5f in 59.00 on August 22), he was unbelievable, he felt super great and that's why we were thinking to go to the seven-eighths."

horse racing
Baksheesh wins the Muskoka Stakes
horse racing
The $200,000 Muskoka Stakes featured a field of 12 two-year-old fillies sprinting 6 1/2 furlongs. Baksheesh, still winless in 2 starts, was sent off as the 5-4 favorite over 7-2 Forest B, a maiden winner last out at second asking, and 8-1 Proud Speaker, a first time starter. Forest B and 3-1 Allpaidup dueled for the lead out of the chute and down the backstretch through opening fractions of 22.86 and 46.23 while stalked by 12-1 Swinging Mandy and 18-1 Thatsitthatsall. Turning for home Thatsitthatsall inherited the lead from the tiring pacesetters through 3/4 in 1:11.48, but Baksheesh, 11th early under Kazushi Kimura, came out 5 wide into the stretch and ran by the rest of the field to win going away by 4 lengths in 1:17.91. It was another 2 1/2 lengths back from Thatsitthatsall to late-running Proud Speaker third.

Full results chart

Winning trainer Ralph Biamonte said, "I got quite excited after the last race when you get somebody like Mark Casse or (new owner) Aron Wellman from Eclipse (Thoroughbred Partners) calling me that we're interested in your horse. It's kind of nerve-wracking when you train a horse for them, but it was good and now tomorrow she can go and live with them. She's really nice. She's good, we never expected her to be that good and she'll get better. She does everything right and I'm going to have a good time watching her now." Jockey Kazushi Kimura said, "She didn't have speed at the beginning that's why I was very focused that if I have a chance to get out that's it and I did. That was a pretty smooth trip. When I was at the three-eighths I was like 'She's going to win for sure', and she did." 

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