A super field of 11 will go to the post for the 91st CANADIAN DERBY (G3) Sunday evening at Century Mile in Nisku, Alberta. There will be 300 people allowed on the grounds to watch the race as COVID-19 has restricted all sports and events.
Century Mile has a fabulous stakes-laden card on Sunday and the Derby has an intriguing field.
The 1 1/4 mile event has a post time of 9:55 Mountain time. A couple of British Columbia-breds are among the favourites.
SYNERGY, by Sungold, is 3 for 3 this year for Russ and Lois Bennett and comes in with a 77 Beyer Figure from his latest victory at Hastings Racecourse. Rico Walcott gets the mount.
MASKWECIS is a 2-time stakes winner in his home province of Alberta in 2020 and will be ridden by Rey Williams as regular rider Walcott rides Syunergy.
BC-bred AT ATTENTION has an 80 Beyer Figure from a win in the CTHS Sales Stakes and the son of Shanghai Bobby is arrives in Alberta for owner Peter Redekop.
MONGOLIAN WIND has won 3 of 4 races including 2 stakes at Assiniboia Downs for owners Mongolian Stable and Andrew Stronach.
Oh, and trainer Robertino Diadoro, who has won a pile of Canadian Derbys, has a starter who has been recently gelded (read more below).
A feature on the contenders –
This column is the Robertino Diodoro factor. Diodoro has won four of the last seven Canadian Derbies. He goes for his fifth on Sunday with a horse that will probably be an overlooked overlay: Something Natural, a horse that appeared to be a disinterested third in the Manitoba Derby behind Mongolian Wind and Mr. Unusual, who have both come to Edmonton, a horse that was claimed for just $20,000 out of a race where he was defeated by 15 lengths and a horse that hasn’t won since Feb. 15.
But to ignore Diodoro is like ignoring the elephant in the room and Diodoro is a big elephant having firmly establishing himself as one of the top trainers in North America with 209 wins this year – third best on the continent behind only Steve Asmussen and Karl Broberg. Never mind that Diodoro’s win percentage (22%) is higher than both Asmussen (19%) and Broberg (also 19%).