Toronto Ont.Woodbine Racetrack.Queen’s Plate contender Rose’s Vision,trainer Stuart C.Simon.Woodbine/ michael burns photo


Vision for the Plate – ROSE’S VISION, 2nd in the Plate Trial, is a major player in the Plate for Chiefswood Stable – 











A fabulous day of racing has been carded at Woodbine for Saturday (and Sunday’s is good too) with 5 big stakes races including the 159th Queen’s Plate. how many have you seen in your lifetime?

The Plate race is always an easy one to remember. The distance, the build up, the crowd, the best sophomores in Canada.

In 1982, SON OF BRIARTIC won for Dave Kapchinsky’s Paddockhurst Stable. It was the first one I saw in person and he defeated RUNAWAY GROOM, considered one of the best Canadian-breds in modern times.

Here are a couple of snapshots from  my first 2 Plates:


SON OF BRIARTIC in the paddock before his Plate win – 1982










The next year, John Cardella orchestrated an amazing Plate upset with his gelding BOMPAGO:













No matter what happens with a Plate winner after the victory, the horse’s name will be added to the rich, long history of the greatest Canadian race. Who goes on the winner’s ledger tomorrow at 5:45 p.m.?


*TWO FAVOURITES have won in the 2000s – Holy Helena last year and Eye of the Leopard in 2009.

*AHEADBYACENTURY battles the jinx – the last horse to win the Coronatin Futurity at 2 and then won the Plate at 3 was NORCLIFFE in 1976.

*The Beyer Figure par for the Plate winner is 96

*The last grey horse to win Plate was WOODCARVER in 1999 (just one grey this year, Strike Me Down)

*36 Fillies have won the Plate

*13 Plate Trial winners have won Plate



Post Horse Trainer Jockey M/L Odds  Breeding  Owners Recent Beyer Figures


1 Boyhood Dream Michael Maker Alan Garcia 30-1  *one of 3 in the race for Ramseys who won Plate with Sir Dudley Digges

– Dialed In – Mayfield Road, Yonaguska. Owners: Ken and Sarah Ramsey. Trainer: Mike Maker. Breeder: Bill Graham. 4th Plate Trial. Beyers: 75, 72 63

2 Cooler Mike Nick Nosowenko Jesse Campbell 30-1  *Plate starter for longtime Woodbine family the Nosowenkos

– – Giant Gizmo – Executive Affair, Bold Executive. Owner/Breeder: Nick and Mike Nosowenko. Trainer: Nick Nosowenko. Jockey: Jesse Campbell.Stakes placed winner. Beyers: 80, 86

3 Inge Norm McKnight Chantal Sutherland 30-1  *Will try to go on the lead all the way

– Victor’s Cry – Alexabella, Congaree. Owner: Bruno Schickedanz. Trainer: Norm McKnight. Breeder: True North Stable. Stakes placed – 5th Marine. Beyers: 74, 74, 67

4 Strike Me Down Graham Motion Jose Ortiz 10-1 *Ear Muffs on, lightly raced but a champion’s pedigree

– Tapit – Strike Softly, Smart Strike. Owner/Breeder: Sam-Son Farms. Trainer: Graham Motion. Jockey: Jose Ortiz. Stakes placed last start, winner. Beyers:  83, 81, 74

5 Silent Poet Nick Gonzalez Gary Boulanger 30-1  *Stronach Stables won the Plate last year, first time at route distance

– Silent Name-Cara Bella, Ghostzapper. Owner/Breeder: Stronach Stables. Trainer: Nick Gonzalez. Gary Boulanger. Winner. Beyers: 82, 82, 68

6 Real Dude Sid Attard David Moran 50-1  *Stronach Stables well bred colt is a maiden

– Ghostzapper – Ginger Brew, Milwaukee Brew. Owner/Breeder: Stronach Stables. Trainer: Sid Attard. Jockey: David Moran Maiden. Beyers: 64, 52

7 Dixie Moon Catherine Day Phillips Eurico Rosa da Silva 4-1 *Popular filly for popular owners

-filly by Curlin – Dixie Chicken. Owner/Breeder: Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry. Trainer: Catherine Day Phillips. Jockey: Eurico da Silva. Won Woodbine Oaks. Beyers: 88, 85

8 Alternative Route Al Stall, Jr. Mitchell Murrill 20-1  *One of 3 in the race bred by Bill Graham

– Tiznow – La Suena, Storm Cat. Owner: Spendthrift Farm. Trainer: Al Stall. Jockey: Mitchell Murrill. Breeder: Bill Graham. Rushaway Stakes. Beyers: 72, 71, 70

9 Say the Word Graham Motion Rafael Hernandez 20-1 *Sam-Son Farms and Woodbine’s leading rider

– More Than Ready – Danceforthecause, Giant’s Causeway. Owner/Breeder: Sam-Son Farms. Trainer: Graham Motion. Jockey: Rafael Hernandez. Winner. Beyers: 83, 79, 77

10 Telekinesis Mark Casse Patrick Husbands 5-2 *early Plate fave has all the tools

Ghostzapper – Intentional Cry, Street Cry (Ire). Owner: Barbara Banke’s Stonestreet Stable. Trainer: Mark Casse. Jockey: Patrick Husbands. Breeder: Bill Graham. $470,000 weanling. Won Plate Trial. Beyers: 88 in Plate Trial, 90 in Lexington

11 Wonder Gadot Mark Casse John Velazquez 3-1 *Blinkers on, hard working gal has not missed many races

– Medaglia D’Oro – Loving Vindication, Vindication. Owner: Gary Barber. Trainer: Mark Casse. Jockey: John Velazquez. Breeder: Anderson Farms. 2nd Woodbine Oaks. Beyers: 88, 96, 82

12 Pawnbroker Michael Maker Joel Rosario 50-1  Just one start

– Gio Ponti – Sweetdetermination, Alphabet Soup. Owner: Ken and Sarah Ramsey. Trainer: Mike Maker. Breeders: Tom Mountain and Lionel Perriera. $40K Keeneland Yearling. Maiden after one race. Beyer: 53

13 Marriage Counselor Michael Maker Jalon Samuel 50-1 *Won at Plate distance on grass

– Overanalyze – Exe, Exchange Rate. Owner/Breeder: Ken and Sarah Ramsey. Trainer: Mike Maker. Winner. Beyers: 62, 53, 59

14 Neepawa Mark Casse Florent Geroux 15-1 *Same sire as Justify

– Scat Daddy – Niigon’s Touch, Niigon, Owner/Breeder: Chiefswood Stable. Trainer: Mark Casse. Jockey: Florent Geroux. Stakes place winner. Beyers: 77, 85, 84

15 Aheadbyacentury John Ross Luis Contreras 15-1 *Wants a fast pace up front

–  Midnight Lute – Sinful, Touch Gold. Owner: Jack of Hearts Racing and John Ross. Trainer: John Ross. Jockey: Luis Contreras. Breeder: Hill ‘N’ Dale Farms. 3rd Plate Trial. Beyers: 77, 74, 66

16 Rose’s Vision Stu Simon Javier Castellano 12-1  *Getting better with each race

Artie Schiller – Essential Rose, Bernardini. Owner/Breeder: Chiefswood Stable. Trainer: Stuart Simon. Jockey: Javier Castellano. 2nd Plate Trial. Beyers: 85 Plate Trial , 71 Marine


MARK CASSE was in town for the post position draw for the 159th Queen’s Plate – Terence Dulay photo/












EXTRA READING – There has been plenty of items in mainstream media this week about the great race, Toronto Star, Sun and National Post plus some interesting pieces in the more restricted trade pubs:


First Plate for the Don Mills boys..


Jim Lawson on growing the Plate:

Woodbine CEO Lawson putting on CFL hat in trying to grow Queen’s Plate


The Americanization of the Plate…

The Americanization of the Plate

MYRACEHORSE – A NEW APP for you to discover racehorse Ownership

Currently California based, check out this new idea called MyRacehorse..

New app offers racehorse ownership opportunity to the masses


INDUSTRY NEWS – FORD NATION and what will happen with AJAX DOWNS

Two Ontario municipalities fighting over the future of a casino east of Toronto are anxiously awaiting to see if premier-designate Doug Ford follows through with a campaign promise to make both of them happy.

Only weeks before the election won by Mr. Ford’s Progressive Conservatives, Great Canadian Gaming Corp. announced that it would be moving its casino at Ajax Downs to neighbouring Pickering. Mr. Ford and his star candidate in Ajax, Rod Phillips, said at the time that they would review the decision and strike a deal to satisfy both communities if elected.


Monitoring and deterring the use of prohibited substances that could illegally boost the performance of horses during races is a critical component of maintaining the integrity and fairness of horse racing in Canada. The Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA), housed within Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, has an important role to play in this area. But how well is the CPMA doing? This is a key question that has led the Agency to undertake a review of all of its activities. Understanding what is currently working well and where improvements can be made is fundamental in ensuring that the work of the CPMA remains relevant and effective.

Plenty of documented information will be consulted during the review process, but it is critical to gather the actual views of those on the front line of horse racing. To engage these individuals, the CPMA is working with a research firm, PRA Inc., to administer a short on-line survey. The hope is that horse owners, trainers, grooms, and other individuals involved in horse racing will take just a few minutes to add their perspective to the review. Understanding the realities of horse racing requires more than data, statistics and reports. It takes the knowledge that comes from the experiences of those for whom horse racing is a commitment and a passion. If you are one of these individuals, please take less than five minutes to provide your insights through the following Web link.

Web link address: