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Lynch hopes lightning strikes twice with Awesome Vow in Woodbine's Wonder Where
ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Trainer Brian Lynch took a shot last Sunday with Golden Moka, and bagged the $300,000 winner’s share in the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie.
On Sunday, Lynch will be looking to spring another stakes upset when he sends out Awesome Vow here at Woodbine in the $250,000 Wonder Where, a 1 1/4-mile turf race which is the final leg of the triple tiara for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies.
The Wonder Where attracted a field of eight, with all entrants unproven at the distance and some of the more talented making their turf debuts.
“Everybody’s taking a shot,” said Lynch, who was on his way home from Saratoga on Thursday morning after watching Bay to Bay finish far back in the Lake George Stakes on Wednesday. “For $250,000, I’m going to take a shot with her”
Golden Moka was undefeated in three starts in Panama last year. He went off at 10-1 in the Prince of Wales despite the facts that he was making his North American debut, his first start in more than eight months, and his first beyond six furlongs.
Awesome Vow figures to be that price and more even though she raced just three weeks ago and has some good turf efforts to her credit.
Owned by Tommy Roberts Racing Stable, Awesome Vow came to Lynch here this spring with a maiden win at Tampa Bay Downs at 1 1/16 miles on the main track and a score over $50,000 claiming nonwinners of two at 1 1/16 on the turf on her ledger.
Although she was entered in a first-level turf allowance at 1 1/8 miles here June 5, that race was switched to Polytrack and Awesome View was prominent early before ending fifth.
In two subsequent attempts, both in first-level allowances at 1 1/16 miles on the main track, Awesome View has finished fourth and fifth.
“To me, she might be a bit of a one-paced horse,” aid Lynch. “She just keeps galloping, and a mile and a quarter falls into play for her.”
Emile Ramsammy, who has ridden Awesome Vow in her last two starts, retains the mount for the Wonder Where.
Bay to Bay fails to fire
Bay to Bay, sent off as the 7-2 second choice in the Grade 2, $150,000 Lake George, was back in her stall here Thursday morning after finishing a non-threatening ninth in the 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-old fillies.
“For some reason, for such a consistent filly, she just didn’t fire,” said Lynch. “I don’t think she was in love with the tight turns on the inner course there.”
The other Canadian shippers stole the show in the Lake George as Perfect Shirl (9-1), Exclusive Love (57-1), and No Explaining (16-1) produced a $6,103 trifecta.
Roger Attfield trains both Perfect Shirl and No Explaining. Mark Casse conditions Exclusive Love.
Tiller’s runners one-two in Deputy Minister stretch duel
A prolonged stretch battle between two very determined racehorses, like the one which took place here in Wednesday evening’s $126,200 Deputy Minister Stakes, could be hard on the nerves of a trainer with a vested interest.
But Bob Tiller got to enjoy the show as Race the Gold and Arepeatee, who wound up a head apart as the one-two finishers, both hail from his barn here at Woodbine.
“It’s nice to watch a stretch duel, when it looks like you’re going to win with one of them,” said Tiller.
Reach the Gold, owned by The Very Dry Stable, was the 4-5 favorite for the Deputy Minister under jockey Chantal Sutherland. Arepeatee, owned by Tiller in partnership with Howard Fishman, was an 8-1 chance with Eurico Rosa Da Silva in the irons.
Purchased for $77,000 at the local select yearling sale, Race the Gold was coming into the Achievement off back-to-back second-place stakes finishes at six furlongs.
After ending second, 1 1/2 lengths behind It’s Time Bear on the turf in the Bold Ruckus, Race the Gold had finished within 1 3/4 lengths of the top local sprinter Essence Hit Man when back on the main track for the Achievement.
The $75,000 share of the Deputy Minister boosted Reach for Gold’s bankroll to $223,365.
“He’s a nice one-turn colt,” said Tiller. “He’ll continue to make money this year, and he should continue make money next year and the year after.
“He had some muscle issues this spring, but he’s got good legs.”
Tiller also is glad that he avoided the temptation that goes with having a talented Canadian-bred 3-year-old when he mapped out Reach for Gold’s campaign.
“He’s been very well-managed, in my opinion,” said Tiller. “I could have gone down the dream route, to the Queen’s Plate, and ruined him.”
The $125,000 Vice Regent, a one-mile turf race for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds here Sept. 5, and the $125,000 Kenora, a six-furlong yearling stakes for 3-year-olds and upward here Sept. 6, are Reach for Gold’s upcoming stakes options.
Arepeatee, who was coming off a fifth-place finish as the 6-5 choice as the restricted second-level allowance at seven furlongs, ran the race of his 14-start career in the Deputy Minister.
“I was thoroughly disgusted with his last race,” said Tiller. “I was expecting a big effort from him last night – but not that big.”
Californians arrive for Royal North
Unzip Me and Minute Limit checked in from California early Thursday morning for Monday’s holiday feature, the Grade 3, $150,000 Royal North, a six-furlong turf race for fillies and mares.
Trained by Martin Jones, Unzip Me comes with solid turf sprint form, including a five-place win streak which ended with a third-place finish in her latest appearance.
Minute Limit, conditioned by John Sadler, has finished second to Unzip Me in two previous six-furlong turf encounters.
Hearing set for Schickedanz
The Ontario Racing Commission has issued a notice of hearing to owner Bruno Schickedanz, with the proceedings to take place at their nearby offices on Aug. 17.
Schickedanz was barred from entering or stabling horses at Woodbine early this month following an incident in which his 13-year-old Wake at Noon shipped in to work over the training track and sustained a fatal breakdown.
The ORC has been conducting its own investigation into the circumstances.