It took her a little while to win her maiden but COURT RETURN went from breaking through for that first score into a stakes winner in two races for Ivan Dalos’ Tall Oaks Farm. The Court Vision gal, a half-sister to Grade 1 winners Channel Maker and Johnny Bear, won a maiden optional claiming race by 8 lengths July 2 and then rolled to victory in the $100,800 Eternal Search Stakes Aug. 22 at Woodbine.
Trained by Josie Carroll, Court Return, from the Sovereign Award winning mare In Return who passed away in 2018, was also the first stakes winner for jockey DAISUKE FUKUMOTO who picked up the mount from regular rider Luis Contreras. Contreras rode the favoured BRAMBLE QUEEN, a Silent Name (Jpn) mare coming in from New York where she was recently 4th in a Grade 2 to Horse of the Year Starship Jubilee.
However, Bramble Queen lost her hind action around the last turn of the inner turf and fell. It is reported that Contreras and the 5-year-old Bramble Queen were okay.
Court Return ran the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.66 and won over Roger Attfield’s Gun Society with Anthony Pottinger and Wayne Browne’s Desdemona third.
Dalos greeted his winning filly after the race. This was the first visit to Woodbine for Dalos in 2020, since owners have only been allowed at Woodbine in the last three weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bramble Queen was the second horse this week who fell on the inner turf course as Miss Evangeline fell earlier in the week and reported to be okay by the Mike DePaulo team.
The AGCO stewards received a call from at least one rider following the Eternal Search Stakes with concerns about the inner turf and thus the 10th race of the day, scheduled for 1 mile on that course, was taken off the turf.
Races 4, 8 and 11 on Sunday are scheduled for the inner turf.
More Charles Fipke, more Roger Attfield and more Speight – LADY SPEIGHTSPEARE had a sensational 2-year-old debut winning race 6 at 7 furlongs on the E P Taylor turf by 3 3/4 lengths in 1:20.93 under Emma-Jayne Wilson. The chestnut, bred in Kentucky by Charles Fipke and trained by Attfield, had fast workout times coming in, won a pace battle with Kentucky invader Lady Preach before drawing clear.
Lady Speightspeare is by Speightstown, sire of Fipke’s undefeated 3-year-old Shirl’s Speight, who is headed to the Kentucky Derby. And Lady Speightspeare is out of stakes winner Lady Shakespear, a daughter of Grade 1 winner Lady Shirl, dam of Breeders’ Cup winner Perfect Shirl, dam of Shirl’s Speight.
Race 1 – MORE SAVVY won her maiden for $25,000 claiming in this 2-year-old race and was yet another winner for owner Steve Suffield and trainer Ricky Griffith this summer. Also co-owned by Racing Canada, More Savvy is a Greydar gal bred by James and Janeane Everatt and Arike Everatt-Meeuse.
Race 3 – A LITTLE VOODOO, an Orb filly, won her maiden on the inner turf off the claim by Bruno Schickedanz and Norm McKnight. This was a $40,000 claiming race at 7 1/2 furlongs.
Race 4 – HOLYFIELD, a 3-year-old Uncle Mo gelding out of Nadeshiko by Honour and Glory, moved to the grass and won his maiden in his 6th career start for Rod Ferguson, Anderson Farms and Kingfield Farms. Trained by Catherine Day Phillips, Holyfield fought his way to victory in 1:40 for 1 1/16 miles over a pair of Chiefswood Stable guys, Malibu Edge and Flame Zapper. Emma-Jayne Wilson rode.
Race 7 – Robert Stewart and trainer Rodney Barrow are having a ball with PIERIAN, who is 3 for 3 this year in claiming races. The Nephrite 4-year-old won her maiden for $7,500 to begin the year, won for $7,000 in her latest and $14,000 on Saturday. Owner Stewart bought the filly for $2,500 at the 2018 CTHS Mixed Sale. She has earned over $40,000 US.
Race 9 – HANIEL won for the second time in 3 starts since coming to Canada from Florida for an ownership group that includes trainer Mark Fournier, Craig McEachern, Quarter Horse owner and trainer Craig Spada and 6 others. The grey mare by Mizzen Mast won race 9 for $25,000 claiming on the turf under Justin Stein. The mare was vanned off after the win.