08/03/2003 11:00PM

Alpha Saphire wins Wonder Where


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Alpha Saphire circled four-wide into contention on the far turn and then drew clear in the stretch for an easy win in Monday's $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes, the third leg of the Canadian Triple Tiara at Woodbine.

Alpha Saphire raced about six lengths off a lively pace under Emile Ramsammy in the mile and a quarter turf event for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies. Swift of Flight set fractions of :25.33, :49.58 and 1:14.86 over the good going, while being stalked by My Sweet Tooch and Seeking the Ring, the even-money favorite.

Alpha Saphire commenced her bid heading into the far turn, and then took control at the head of the stretch en route to two and three-quarter score. New York shipper Commander's Lady rallied wide from last in the 11-horse field to finish a neck in front of My Sweet Tooch in second, while Seeking the Ring faded to sixth. The final time was 2:06.59.

Trainer Malcolm Pierce said the added distance was helpful in earning Alpha Saphire her first stakes victory.

"We were running her a little shorter, and I guess she just needed more distance," Pierce said. "She finally ran back to the race she ran at Gulfstream over the winter."

Alpha Saphire ($16.10) banked $150,000 for Stronach Stable.

* Inish Glora ($4) captured Monday's supporting feature, the $132,875 Victoriana Stakes.

Todd Kabel rode Inish Glora, who helped set the pace and then drew off in the stretch to prevail by two lengths over 8-5 second choice Heyahohowdy. Spanish Decree edged Dancen In the Sun for third, while finishing eight lengths back in the eight-horse field of Ontario-sired fillies and mares.

Inish Glora covered a mile and a sixteenth on the turf in 1:43.59. She banked $79,725 for owner Robert Costigan and trainer Mac Benson.