Midnight Aria all the way in the Queens Plate
Midnight Aria and Jesse Campbell looked like lone speed on paper for the $1,000,000 Queens Plate on Sunday at Woodbine. They worked out that trip and went all the way on the engine, holding off a late charge from race favorite Up With the Birds to hold on and win Canada’s most prestigious race by half a length. Sent off at odds of 16/1, Midnight Aria (BetPTC.com Longshot) took the lead from the rail and set pretty sensible fractions as the rain poured in Toronto. Midnight Aria maintained a nice lead at the top of the stretch and opened up three and a half lengths at the eighth pole. Up with the Birds (BetPTC.com Top Selection) came roaring from last early on and became the only horse with a chance late. Joel Rosario implored Up with the Birds with everything he had, but he came up just a half length short at the end, having to settle for second money. Dynamic Sky (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) finished up in third and completed a BetPTC.com Tri that came back $427 for each dollar wager.
Go Blue or Go Home had one of the bigger wins on the card, as he went all the way to win the Highlander Stakes by five lengths. The race was washed off the turf, so it certainly changed the dynamic, and Go Blue Or Go Home took full advantage and won with panache. Forte De Marmi and Rosario took a wet running of the Singspiel as for much of the race the field couldn’t be seen through the downpour. However when they came into view in the stretch, Forte de Marmi was well clear and opened up to win by six and a quarter lengths. Solid Appeal (BetPTC.com Longshot) was another winner for Jesse Campbell as they sat a garden trip to win the Dance Smartly Stakes. Julie’s Love (BetPTC.com Top Selection) ran second with No Explaining (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) running third, capping off a Tri worth $524.40.
Starship Truffles dominates the Princess Rooney at Calder
Starship Truffles took the lead on the far turn and never looked back as she drew off to win the Grade 1 Princess Rooney at Calder by three and three quarter lengths. Sent off at odds of 8/1, Starship Truffles and Edgard Zayas were fourth early on and were stuck out wide. But that ground loss didn’t effect her at all, as she rallied by the early leader Costly on the far turn. Judy the Beauty (BetPTC.com Top Selection) got loose late but couldn’t make up the ground to catch Starship Truffles who was long gone. Bahamian Squall was able to close in to take the Smile Sprint in a slight upset at odds of 7/1. Bahamian Squall was able to avoid a speed duel this time and had to outduel a tough rival in Trinniberg as well as a late closing bid from Jackson Bend, as those two ran second and third respectively.
Wildcat Lily (BetPTC.com Top Selection) won a hard fought battle with Dreaming of Susie (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) to win the Azalea Stakes. Those two hooked up right from the start and there was never more than a length between them the entire way. Wildcat Lily put the nose in front at the quarter pole and held on to win by a neck. Mico Margarita (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) took home the Carry Back Stakes, after getting a perfect garden trip early on and then blasting past his rivals to win going away by four and a half lengths. Red Rocket Express got up to finish second at 24/1, just a nose ahead of Sr. Quisqueyano (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who finished up in third. Silver Cloud was able to close in and win the five furlong Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint.
Game on Dude continues his hot streak, takes the Gold Cup
Game on Dude (BetPTC.com Top Selection) went right to the front and never looked back as he won his fifth straight race and his second straight Hollywood Gold Cup on Saturday. Sent off as the prohibitive 1/5 favorite, Game on Dude and Mike Smith were able to set a very leisurely pace, going just 25 seconds to the opening quarter and 49.31 for the opening half mile. Kettle Corn (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) put in a big rally down on the rail as the field came to the quarter pole, and he loomed up to Game on Dude, but Mike Smith let his runner out a notch and Game on Dude prevailed to win by a length under just a hand ride.
Schiaparelli (BetPTC.com Top Selection) also went all the way, as she went all the way to win the Grade 2 Royal Heroine Mile. Schiaparelli gave Joe Talamo another turf stake win, as he has been dominating at the Hollywood Park meet all spring/summer long. Egg Drop was second all the way around while Mi Gi Gi (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) finished up in third.
Big Blue Kitten rides the rail to win the Grade 1 United Nations
Big Blue Kitten and Joel Rosario saved all the ground and burst through late to get the win in the Grade 1 $500,000 United Nations Stakes at Monmouth Park on Saturday. Sent off at odds of 5/2, Joe Bravo kept Big Blue Kitten towards the back of the pack as Little Mike went out to set the opening fractions. Little Mike set pretty strong fractions, but led to the top of the stretch. He was unable however to go with both Teaks North (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) and Big Blue Kitten who passed him just inside the eighth pole. Those two went on with it, but Big Blue Kitten just had more in the tank and edged away to win by a length and a quarter. Teaks North finished up in second while Hangover Kid (BetPTC.com Longshot) got up for third at 47/1. Raging Daoust scored a shocking win in the Salvator Mile as he won at odds of 33/1. Big Sur went to the lead and held onto second at odds of 15/1, as the exacta came back worth $420.