Three-year-old Mr Havercamp schooled his older rivals in the $125,000 Bunty Lawless Stakes, kicking away to a seven and a half length victory on Saturday afternoon at Woodbine Racetrack.
Under the guidance of Woodbine’s meet-leading jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, Mr Havercamp escaped from behind a wall of horses and rallied down the stretch on the far outside to score the head-turning victory in the one-mile Ontario Sires Stakes event for three-year-olds and up. His winning time over the E.P. Taylor Turf Course was 1:34.52.
San Nicola Thunder, the 2014 Bunty Lawless champion who raced widest of all among the front pack for most of the mile, finished back in second-place with Luis Contreras aboard. Call Me Wally and Jesse Campbell finished third after racing just outside of the inside leader Where’s the Widget through fractions of :24.33, :47.09 and 1:10.52. Nipigon finished fourth ahead of defending champion Where’s the Widget.
“This horse is a very, very nice horse,” said Da Silva after the race. “I went there full of confidence. He did train very, very well. Catherine [Day Phillips] brought him very sharp today. He was behind horses and it was a little bit hard to relax him because he wanted to go a little bit earlier, but there was a wall of horses and we just sat behind and when I turned him loose he just broke from there. He’s going to be special and he’s in the right hands.”
Mr Havercamp completed a training double on the program for Catherine Day Phillips, pushing her win count for the year past her previous best mark of 22 from the 2016 season.
“Since he’s started running, his personality has gotten bigger and better and he’s just so much fun to be around,” said Day Phillips of Mr Havercamp.
Owned by Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry, the homebred Court Vision-Tennessee Lamb gelding has earned all four of his wins at Woodbine and now boasts back-to-back stakes victories. Unraced as a two-year-old, Mr Havercamp has now banked over $210,000 in just five career starts.
“It’s just exciting to watch him run,” said Sean Fitzhenry. “It’s awesome to see when he kicks down the lane. It’s a thing of beauty.”
“I was a little worried today,” admitted Dorothy, “but he came up nicely and took over and I was so happy. He’s such an awesome horse.”
Sent postward as the even-money favourite following his Vice Regent Stakes win last month, Mr Havercamp paid $4.30, $2.80 and $2.20. He combined with San Nicola Thunder ($3.90, $2.90) for a 6-7 exacta worth $12.70. A $1 trifecta of 6-7-2 (Call Me Wally, $3.10) paid $18.30 and a $1 superfecta of 6-7-2-4 (Nipigon) returned $46.35. Where’s the Widget, Born in a Breeze, supplemental entry Internal Bourbon and Wittle Wed Wabbit completed the order of finish.