Updated on 09/16/2011 8:10AM

Atto invaders test turf


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Good Journey and Royal Spy, who checked into Woodbine last week to prepare for Sunday's $1 million Atto Mile, had their first feel of the E.P. Taylor turf course Tuesday morning.

Patrick Husbands, Woodbine's leading rider, worked both horses and will ride Royal Spy in the Atto Mile, a Grade 1 turf race for 3-year-olds and up.

Good Journey, trained by Wally Dollase in California, breezed five furlongs in 1:04.20. Royal Spy, based in Kentucky with Tom Amoss, breezed four furlongs in 49.60 seconds.

The course was rated "good" after heavy overnight rain. Two grass races were run here Monday, but there will be no more turf racing until Saturday.

"It was pretty soggy," said assistant trainer Aimee Dollase after Good Journey's breeze. "But we'd rather have him work a little slow on a softer turf than work really fast on a hard course. He was real smooth over the course. He just cruised around there. We just let him do what he wanted to do, but he got what he needed to out of it. That's the important thing."

Good Journey is 2 for 2 this year, both races at a mile on turf, the latest being the Grade 2 Firecracker at Churchill Downs July 4. Both wins came under Pat Day, who retains the mount.

Royal Spy also will be seeking his third straight score over one mile on turf. His most recent win was the West Virginia House of Delegates Speaker's Cup at Mountaineer Aug. 10.

American invaders expected to arrive later this week are Del Mar Show, from New York; Moon Solitaire, from Kentucky; and Nuclear Debate and Touch of the Blues, from California.

Del Mar Show will be ridden by Jerry Bailey, Moon Solitaire by Richard Migliore, Nuclear Debate by Gary Stevens, and Touch of the Blues by Corey Nakatani.

Noverre, who will be ridden by Frankie Dettori, was due in from England Tuesday evening.

Heading the Woodbine contingent for the Atto Mile will be Quiet Resolve, who won the race via a disqualification in 1999, and Strut the Stage. Both horses are owned by Sam-Son Farm, but will run as separate betting interests.

Todd Kabel, who won six stakes here over the Labor Day weekend, will ride Quiet Resolve; Robby Albarado has the call on Strut the Stage.

Chopinina, Dumaani Star, and Regal Mister are the other local candidates.

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