(Photo above of DESERT RIDE winning the Woodbine Oaks by Terence Dulay, www.horse-races.net)
Top Canadian 3-year-olds TONE BROKE and DESERT RIDE are tackling Grade 1 company on Saturday at Belmont Park on a stakes-filled day of grass racing at the New York track.
TONE BROKE won two legs of Canada’s Triple Crown and was third in the Queen’s Plate and is the leading contender for Champion 3-year-old colt in Canada.
Bred in Ontario by Sean Fitzhenry and owned by L & N Racing of Lee, Michael and Andrew Levinson and Don Nelson, Tone Broke will compete in the Grade 1 Jockey Club Derby, $1 million race at 1 1/2 miles on turf.
The son of Broken Vow just won the 12 furlong Breeders’ Stakes at Woodbine over Canadian-breds.
Tone Broke meets very good US turf sophomores A Thread of Blue and Henley’s Joy plus a variety of European invaders.
The Canadian star will start from post 6 with John Velazquez riding. Velazquez will be Tone Broke’s 8th straight different rider. Steve Asmussen trains.
The Jockey Club Derby is race 10 at Belmont Saturday with a post time of 5:47 pm.
DESERT RIDE, who won the Woodbine Oaks for Sam-Son Farms, was fifth in the Plate and then won the 10 furlong Wonder Where Stakes on the grass Aug. 10, has post 4 in the previous race, the Grade 1 Jockey Club Oaks at 1 3/8 miles on turf.
Trained by Graham Motion, Desert Ride is the big favourite to be Champion 3-year-old Filly in this country and the daughter of Candy Ride (Arg) will be ridden by John Velazquez.
One of Desert Ride’s toughest opponents on Saturday is Woodbine-based ART OF ALMOST, third in the Grade 3 Pucker Up Stakes at Arlignton in her last start for trainer Roger Attfield. The Dansili (GB) filly is a 2-time winner at Woodbine this year.
At KENTUCKY DOWNS, which has a short meeting of all turf races for huge purses, there are some Canadian based trainers and starters.
On Sunday Woodbine trainer Barbara Minshall sends out ARMISTICE DAY, owned by Bruce Lunsford and Lansdon Robbins, in the $600,000 Dueling Grounds Derby,
Also at Kentucky Downs, but on Saturday, some recent Woodbine 2-year-old winners are in stakes races having been bought privately by Gary Barber and partners.
ALCOOLS, who won a maiden allowance on Aug 3 at Woodbine for Wayne Rice, and Scocciatore, A maiden allowance winner on grass for Ralph Biamonte, start in the $500,000 Juvenile Turf Sprint.