07/28/2010 2:58PM

Fifty Proof's victory stands for now


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The case of Fifty Proof has been the talk of the track this week.

Fifty Proof, a 4-year-old gelding trained by Ian Black, had won a restricted first-level allowance race in seemingly routine fashion here last Thursday, scoring by 4 3/4 lengths under Justin Stein as the 3-4 choice.

But, shortly after the stewards had made the result official, they were informed that Fifty Proof’s starting stall appeared to have opened a fraction before the others in the six-horse field.

John LeBlanc Jr., trainer of the runner-up, Peter’s Charisma, lodged a protest the next day on the grounds that Fifty Proof should have been declared a non-starter, and the stewards convened a hearing last Saturday.

The slow-motion replay revealed the malfunction, but the stewards ruled that Fifty Proof had gained no advantage and let the result stand.

LeBlanc then appealed the stewards’ ruling to the Ontario Racing Commission. No date had been set as of Wednesday.

Promising juvenile euthanized

For the second straight year, fatal misfortune has struck a promising 2-year-old in the barn of trainer Greg De Gannes.

Naval Attack, who would have been one of the favorites for Saturday’s Vandal Stakes, was euthanized after breezing five furlongs here July 17.

“He condylar-fractured in both front legs,” said De Gannes, who trained Naval Attack for owner Andrew Fredericks.

Naval Attack had finished a closing second making his first lifetime start in the 5 1/2-furlong Shady Well here July 3.

“He was a bright star, shot down early.”

Last June, Olredlgetcha had registered a very impressive win in his first lifetime start, the five-furlong Victoria.

“It looked like he had a bright future,” said De Gannes. “He died five days later.”

Olredlgetcha had developed a hock infection following the Victoria and was euthanized after being sent to the veterinary clinic at the nearby University of Guelph.

Four work for Shepperton start

Four horses eyeing next Wednesday’s $125,000 Shepperton Stakes were on the work tabs here Wednesday morning, with Not Bourbon, Don’s Folly, and Gypsy Ring going over the main track and Paso Doble on the dirt training surface.

Not Bourbon, trained by Roger Attfield, breezed four furlongs 47.60 seconds under his regular rider, Jono Jones.

“It was a moderate work,” said Attfield. “I was just sort of giving him a work.”

Not Bourbon would be getting back to sprinting on the main track after finishing fifth in two graded turf stakes sprints.

Don’s Folly, who breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 under rider Eurico Rosa da Silva, also is returning to a main-track sprint for trainer Ian Black.

“I was really happy with him,” said Black.

Gypsy Ring, trained by Paul Buttigieg, breezed five furlongs in 1:02 after going in 1:00 here nine days earlier.

Gypsy Ring had finished a strong second in the six-furlong New Providence, the last sprint stakes for the division here June 9, but then was a disappointing eighth in an open first-level allowance.

“Everything went wrong in his last race,” said Buttigieg. “I’m just throwing it out.”

Paso Doble, fourth in the Shepperton, breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 under exercise rider Andy Sykes.

“He worked very good,” said trainer Sid Attard.

The Shepperton, a 6 1/2-furlong race for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds and upward, attracted 12 nominees and the majority are expected to start.

Attfield pair prep for stakes bids

Attfield worked This Lilsoulofmine and Miss Keller over the turf training course on Wednesday morning with an eye toward upcoming stakes engagements.

Miss Keller, with Chantal Sutherland in the irons, and Thislilsoulofmine, under jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, went five furlongs in company and were clocked in 1:00.80.

Attfield plans to ship Miss Keller to Saratoga for new Wednesday’s $70,000 De La Rose, a one-mile overnight turf stakes for fillies and mares.

Miss Keller, an Irish-bred 4-year-old filly, last saw action here June 5, finishing second in the Grade 2 Nassau over one mile of turf.

“She hurt herself in the gate that day,” said Attfield.

Thislilsoulofmine is a maiden after just two starts but is heading for Sunday’s $250,000 Wonder Where, a 1 1/4-mile turf stakes for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies.

Owned and bred by Charles Fipke, Thislilsoulofmine finished sixth over one mile on turf in her debut here May 23 but then ended a closing third behind Barracks Road and Somme when traveling over the same distance and surface in the Ontario Damsel here July 10.

Barracks Road is slated to ship to Saratoga for the $70,000 Hattie Moseley, a one-mile overnight turf stakes for 3-year-old fillies on Aug. 7.

Somme, trained by Josie Carroll, is on target for the Wonder Where along with stablemate Cindy’s Joy, who is a maiden after four starts.

Owned by Donver Stable, Cindy’s Joy finished second here in a maiden race over 1 1/8 miles of turf.

“She closed well last time,” said Carroll. “It looks like she wants a good route of ground.”

Spice Route pointed for Sky Classic

Attfield also sent out Spice Route to breeze four furlongs on the turf training course in 50.40 seconds under exercise rider Melanie Giddings.

Spice Route, winner of the Grade 3 Singspiel over 1 1/2 miles on turf in his first start in more than six months here July 4, was scratched from last Saturday’s Nijinsky when the course came up yielding.

“I’ll probably just train him up to the Sky Classic,” said Attfield.

The Grade 2, $250,000 Sky Classic, a 1 1/4-mile turf race for 3-year-olds and upward, will be run on Aug. 22 and is the next local stepping-stone on the road to the Grade 1 Canadian International here Oct. 16.

Sutherland penalized for whip use

Jockey Chantal Sutherland has been fined $300 and suspended for one racing day after the stewards ruled she had violated whipping rules by striking her mount, Lucky Melissa, more than three times in succession during last Thursday’s seventh race. Lucky Melissa won the race by a head.

Sutherland was scheduled to serve the suspension on Wednesday but instead will sit out Friday’s card after the stewards granted her request to ride the favored Race for Gold in Wednesday’s Deputy Minister under the designated stakes rule.