Wild spring weather challenges aside, Woodbine horsepeople are well into preparing horses for the beginning of the 2023 season on April 22. On Thursday, 60 horses had workouts on the training track in advance of the heavy rain that began that evening and will continue through Friday.
Trainers who have had horses on the work tab include Dave Cotey, John Mattine, John Ross, Kevin Attard, Mike DePaulo, Denyse McClachrie and Darwin Banach.
Among the workers was King’s Plate hopeful DREAM JEREEM (Astern (AUS)) owned by Derek Chin and trained by Attard. Dream Jereem, who went three furlongs in an easy 40.80, won his debut last season and then was a troubled seventh, beaten just 2 1/2 lengths in the Coronation Futurity.
🍀King’s Plate hopeful GOLD MAGIC (Good Magic) a sensational winner of his career debut at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 11 with an 87 Beyer Speed Figure, had a more difficult outing in his second career race on March 16. Sent off as the 8-to-5 favourite in a six-horse allowance race at 7 furlongs, Gold Magic, owned by Al and Bill Ulwelling and trained by Kevin Attard, broke from the rail and chased a speed duel briefly before he barged his way between horses, appearing to be a bit rank under jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson. On the rail on the turn, Gold Magic lost ground but put in a solid rally to just miss third after swinging off the rail into the stretch run. The colt galloped out well in what was surely a solid learning experience. He earned a 67 Beyer Figure in the race that went in 1:24.37.
🍀Trainer MIKE DUNSLOW, who got a bit of a late start to racing some horses in Florida this winter, has won two races this week including a victory by MURDER HORNET in a maiden race on March 16 at Gulfstream Park. The 4-year-old filly by Frac Daddy, bred in Ontario by owner Bruno Schickedanz, was making her second start of the year, her first start on dirt and she rallied wide to win by a neck at 16-to-1. Emma-Jayne Wilson, who has been on a real roll of late in Florida, was on board.
Dunslow, who was the paddock blacksmith at Woodbine for many years, had his first full season as a trainer in 2022. He won his first race of 2023 on March 15 when Fedalia was placed first through disqualification at 8-to-1. Wilson also rode that winner.
Dunslow recently talked about his career in racing and his decision to try training in an entertaining edition of the racing show Journeys: