06/27/2010 11:00PM

Injury keeps Artic Fern from Plate


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Artic Fern, who had been one of the leading candidates for Sunday's $1 million Queen's Plate, will not make the race after his trainer reported that the horse emerged from his recent workout with a possible shoulder injury.

Artic Fern would have been starting in a stakes for first time in the Queen's Plate, but the colt was highly regarded because of recent back-to-back allowance victories at 1 1/16 miles.

Artic Fern breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 on the training track here last Saturday.

"He didn't come out of his last work right," said trainer Mike Keogh. "We don't know for sure what the problem is. He X-rayed clean; we think it's something up in his shoulder."

Artic Fern's defection leaves 12 probable starters and three other possibilities when the Queen's Plate is drawn here Thursday morning.

The majority of candidates worked here over the past few days, including Ghost Fleet and Who We Gunna Call on Monday.

Ghost Fleet, sixth in the 1 1/8-mile Plate Trial for trainer Sid Attard, breezed five furlongs in 59.60 seconds and galloped out six furlongs in 1:13. The work was the colt's second under his new rider, Richard Dos Ramos, and without the blinkers he had worn in his two starts this year.

"He's been kind of lazy," Attard said, "but he doesn't look as lazy with Dos Ramos."

Who We Gunna Call, trained by Tino Attard, breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 under rider Gerry Olguin while going in company with older stablemate Lady's First Cat.

"They went head and head," Tino Attard said. "He galloped out six furlongs in 1:13 and pulled up seven furlongs in 1:26."

Who We Gunna Call will be making his stakes debut in the Queen's Plate.

Roan Inish, Mobthewarrior, and the Sam-Son Farm team of Hotep, Giant's Tomb, and Dark Cloud Dancer all had their final Plate preps Sunday.

Hotep, who could be favorite off his second-place finish in the open Marine Stakes at 1 1/16 miles here May 29, breezed six furlongs in 1:13.60 and galloped out seven furlongs in 1:27.60 under rider Patrick Husbands.

Giant's Tomb, under exercise rider Bill O'Connor, and Dark Cloud Dancer, with assistant trainer Hugh Chatman aboard, broke off about five lengths in front of Hotep and finished in 1:14.40.

While trainer Mark Frostad expressed satisfaction with the work of Giant's Tomb and Dark Cloud Dancer, the exercise was designed for Hotep.

"We wanted to get him to relax," Frostad said. "He came and split them; he did it very well."

Giant's Tomb is coming off a fourth-place finish in the Plate Trial, while Dark Cloud Dancer would get getting his first test in stakes company.

Roan Inish, winner of the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks, breezed four furlongs in 48.60 and galloped out five furlongs in 1:01.60 with her trainer, Carolyn Costigan, in the irons.

"Her brother Bru Boru was there just to start us into a gallop," Costigan said. "That helped keep her interest, keep her on the bridle. She went very well."

Mobthewarrior, third in the Plate Trial for trainer Greg De Gannes, breezed six furlongs in 1:16 and galloped out seven furlongs in 1:31.40 under regular rider Emile Ramsammy.

"He just ran a mile and an eighth; he really didn't need to do much," De Gannes said.

Smart Sky and Vicar Street had their Plate tune-ups last Saturday.

Smart Sky, a maiden winner at 1 1/8 miles last time out, breezed seven furlongs in 1:28.80 on the main track under Chantal Sutherland.

"It was really, really good," trainer Mike Doyle said. "He went very slow early and finished up very strong."

Vicar Street, a maiden after eight starts, breezed five furlongs on the main track in 1:00.80 under jockey Tyler Pizarro.

"He relaxed nicely behind another horse, moved past him when he was asked to, and galloped out decently by himself," trainer Catherine Day Philliips said.

The undecided horses as of Monday morning were Moment of Majesty, Embur's Song, and Captain Canuck.

Moment of Majesty, coming off a second-place finish in the Woodbine Oaks, breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80 on Saturday under regular rider Robert Landry. Sue Leslie, trainer and part-owner of Moment of Majesty, would have to supplement her at a cost of $25,000.

Trainer Todd Pletcher is playing it close to the vest with third-place Oaks finisher Embur's Song, who breezed four furlongs in 50 seconds at her Saratoga base Sunday.

Captain Canuck, fifth in the Trial, breezed five furlongs in 1:01 on Monday under David Clark, who had been Artic Fern's regular rider.