News came out Thursday that one owner per starter at Woodbine, plus one guest, will be allowed to come to the track apron and watch their horse race beginning Saturday August 1. These will be the first people allowed on the frontside of Woodbine’s massive track since last year as everything has been shut down since March.
Jockey agents will be allowed on the backstretch to conduct business as of Tuesday August 4.
The protocols for an owner visit are strict. An owner can only watch their horse run and then must leave. Should they have more than one horse racing on a day, they must go to their car and wait for that race.
The GTA and Peel reached Stage 3 Friday as granted by the governments and health advisors and thus Woodbine can join Woodbine Mohawk in allowing owners.
Woodbine Entertainment’s teletheatre network spots are also opening up as restaurants are allowed to open with less-than-capacity numbers.
The bad news is, because of the monitored and slow approach to opening businesses in Ontario, there will not be fans at Woodbine for the Queen’s Plate Sept. 12 and it is uncertain if any fans will be allowed on site before the end of the racing season and (possibly into 2021).
There have been a lot of super racing performances thus far in the 2020 meeting and the first big day of the season comes up August 15 with the Woodbine Oaks and Plate Trial.
*Several Plate Trial nominees and/or Plate nominees are racing today at Woodbine including MIGHTY HEART, TECUMSEH’S WAR, GOLDEN WAVE, BELICHICK, OLLIEMYBOY, RED STORM RISEN, MALIBU EDGE and HOLYFIELD.
Friday/Thursday racing recaps:
MAKE NO MISTAKE lowered the course record for 1 mile on the inner turf with her front running score in race 7, a starter handicap where she was 8 to 1 and ridden well by Daisuke Fukuomoto.
The Kentucky-bred by Raison D’Etat, owned by Timothy Murray and Mary Self, trained by Zelko Krcmar, won by 2 1/4 lenght sin 1:34.45, bettering the mark of 1:35.19 set last fall by Surgical Strike. Make No Mistake has been first or second in all five of her recent races and she was bred by Calumet Farms.
Thursday, SPANISH BALLERINA powered to another win in a 5 furlong turf dash for Ruvee Stables and Frank Huarte, setting a course record of 55.46. The Victor’s Cry filly was ridden by Emma-Jayne Wilson in the optional claiming race. Spanish Ballerina is the lone 3-time winner at the meeting currently.
Race 1- The drop and pop for EL CHAIRMAN, owned by Dr. Rolph Davis, as this guy landed at the $7,500 claiming level in this 6 furlong dash for non-winners of 2. Trained by Robert Tiller, El Chairman (Society’s Chairman) broke slowly but zoomed past a pace duel to win by 2 lengths at almost 6 to 1. Two horses were claimed from the race by trainer Julie Mathese; Blessed Two and Deputy of Egbert, who bled.
Race 2- Off a good speed try in his debut, JERSEY DIAMOND won his second career race for Mike Stone and trainer Jamie Attard. This speed Kentucky-bred was in for the $25,000 claiming price and is by Jersey Town. He won by 7 1/2 lengths in 58.48 for 5 furlongs and Justin Stein rode.
Race 3- Another one for the favourite players as the 2-year-old filly PURRSUADE ME, by Kitten’s Joy, won this 5 furlong maiden race for $25,000 by 6 lengths under Emma-Jayne Wilson. This is a filly owned by Ramon Dominguez Jr and trained by Sandra Dominguez.
Race 4 – IN A TWIST parlayed a smart season debut into a half-length win in this $25,000 claiming race at 7 furlongs. The winner was owned by Cory Hoffman and Stephen Chesney and trained by Kevin Attard but he was one of 2 claims in the race by 1569389 Ontario Inc. and trainer Martin Drexler. The other one claimed was Torpedo Max. Rafael Hernandez rode In a Twist.
The Old Forester 2-year-old FOREST SURVIVOR was 3 to 5 in this maiden race for $25,000 claiming off a strong debut race and he won this race by 4 1/2 lengths for Racing Canada and Steven Duffield and trainer Ricky Griffith. The winner ran 5 furlongs in 58.15 and he was claimed by Bruno Schickedanz. The winner was bred by John Carey, is from the mare Bear’s Kitty Kitty and was bought at the 2019 CTHS yearling sale for $13,000 by Griffith.
The roll continues for owner Howard Walton as his PINK LEMONADE won this $14,000 claiming dash at 6 furlongs, 1:11.35. The Signature Red 4-year-old dueled briefly with The Kippy Train, widened and then lasted to win under Justin Stein. John Mattine trains.
The last race had the most drama as newcomer DOOBIEDOOBIEDOOBIE won this 6 1/2 furlong Tapeta dash for $14,000 claiming but he didn’t keep a straight course in the stretch and was dropped from 1st to 4th. The Terry Jordan trainee was claimed from the race by Bruno Schickedanz.
Placed first was MACHO T, the second winner of the day for trainer J0hn Mattine, owned by RCC Stable. This speedy grey ran well in his return July 12 in a fast race and almost led all the way in this race under David Moran.
BOSSALINA bossed around a field of $25,000 claiming fillies in race 1 at 18 to 1, the longest shot in the 6-horse field. Dave Cotey co-owns and trains with Barry Butzer and Skye Chernetz rode the Street Boss gal to this whopping 6-length win.
DAD’S MISSY won in her third start of the year for Sheldon Pettle and Frank Russo, trained Steve Attard. This is a handy Ontario-bred by Frac Daddy who has 2 wins in 10 races and has earned well over $50,000. Rafael Hernandez rode.
FIESTA IN VEGAS doubled up in this $7,500 claiming race under Hernandez for Bruno Schickedanz and trainer Norm McKnight. She paid just $3.20 as a heavy favourite.
Another favourite came in in race 4; NO QUESTION paid a nice $8.00 as she wore down the leaders to take this $7,500 claiming race under Patrick Husbands for Steven Chircop and Pinnacle Racing. The winner is an Ontario-bred by Second in Command. That is the fifth win at Woodbine this season for Chircop.
BOARDROOM came off her exciting debut win to beat the boys in this allowance/optional claiming race with even more pizzazz. The LNJ Foxwoods filly by Commissioner, trained by Josie Carroll, won by 6 1/2 lengths in 1:16.46.
ESKIMINZIN has been amazing this year as the 5-year-old has won both starts in tough company on grass including this 6 furlong dash in 1:08.24 over Real Money and Malibu Secret. The Cold Harbor fellow, owned and bred by Jecara Farms was ridden by Darryl Holland.
The day wrapped up with another win for the rolling TERRA RACING as their speedy filly CLASSY N SILENT won her maiden by 5 lengths for $7,500 claiming for trainer Nick Gonzalez. The filly was the first Woodbine winner for jockey LARRY MUNOZ.