10/21/2009 11:00PM

No controversy this time

Michael Burns
Indian Apple Is scores a front-running win under Chantal Sutherland in Wednesday night's Ruling Angel Stakes

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Indian Apple Is was involved in one of the more controversial incidents at this year's meeting when she led throughout a first-level allowance on Aug. 15 but was declared a non-starter after the stewards ruled that she had broken through the gate prior to the start.

On Wednesday evening, Indian Apple Is was off to another bullet-like beginning, but this time she got to keep the money following her front-running score in the $111,500 Ruling Angel Stakes.

"It was nice to see this filly bounce back like this," said trainer Bob Tiller, who sent out Indian Apple Is for a half-length score under new rider Chantal Sutherland in the 6 1/2-furlong race for 3-year-old fillies.

Tiller and owner-breeder Frank DiGiulio dropped an appeal of Indian Apple Is's disqualification after she cleared her first-level conditions here Oct. 9.

"I think she's been underestimated," said Tiller. "She's not the most perfectly conformed filly; she toes in pretty badly. But, she's a hell of a nice filly and she's tough.

"She was running back on 12 days' rest, and she ran the best race of her life. I thought it was coming; I loved her there."

Tiller was particularly encouraged when Indian Apple Is drew the outside post in a field which wound up at six following a late scratch.

"She broke right on the money," said Tiller. "But I was concerned. I didn't really want to be on the lead.

"You don't win many races on the lead on Polytrack. It's not speed-favoring, the way I see it, and it's extremely biased toward outside posts."

Terry Husbands wins first local race

Jockey Terry Husbands made his first Woodbine winner memorable in more ways than one as he guided Winn Creek to a head upset for a meet-high $188.90 win mutuel here Wednesday night.

"The feeling was unbelievable," said the 21-year-old Husbands, who rode Winn Creek in the maiden $20,000 claiming race for trainer Mike Wright.

Husbands, a nephew of riding brothers Patrick and Simon Husbands, was born in the Barbados but moved to Toronto with his grandmother at age 14.

"I'd always followed the horses," said Husbands, who started out galloping here for trainer Stanley Baresich at age 16.

The following year, Husbands went west and worked as an exercise rider at Assiniboia Downs. In 2006, he took out his jockey's license there.

"I wanted to race on a smaller track and get some experience before I tried the big time," said Husbands, who rode four winners in his only Assiniboia campaign before hanging up his tack to preserve his apprentice allowance.

His riding career, however, did not resume until this September.

"I had a bad injury," said Husbands, who did not provide details. "I was still galloping horses, for Alec Fehr, but I couldn't race-ride."

Husbands took out his license in September 2008, spent the winter at Palm Meadows working for Fehr, and then hooked up with agent Tom Patton Jr. this summer before restarting his career at Fort Erie on Aug. 31.

"It was a lot different than out west," said Husbands, who had ridden three winners at Fort Erie prior to his breakthrough here.

This winter, Husbands plans to head south but will not ride so that he can keep his apprentice status for most of next year.

Apprentice Moreno in from Alberta

Omar Moreno, another apprentice rider who has come to Woodbine by way of western Canada, is slated to make his local debut on Saturday and has been named on four mounts.

Moreno, 24, rode at Northlands Park this year and recorded 19 victories, 41 seconds, and 42 thirds from 273 mounts to finish 12th in the standings.

"I'd been thinking about coming here since I started, and trainers there were telling me I should try it," said Moreno. "I learned a lot this year, and I'm hoping to learn more here."

Moreno was born in El Salvador and came to Edmonton as a refugee along with his father and four brothers in 1991.

"We moved around a lot," said Moreno, who was placed in foster care at age 11.

Moreno's first chosen sport was boxing and he captured three national junior championships in the under 106-pound category before hanging up his gloves in 2005.

Dennis Ejak, a boxing official, also was a bloodstock agent and encouraged Moreno to try Alberta's exercise rider and jockey training program at Olds College.

"I took riding lessons, just to get in," said Moreno, who completed the three-month program in 2006 and then began galloping horses for Bar None Ranches and trainer Ron Grieves.

Last year, Moreno started out at Lethbridge, a "B" track in Alberta where he rode seven winners. He added another win at Grande Prairie.

"I didn't want to ride in Edmonton until I got more experience," said Moreno, who checked into Woodbine following the conclusion of the Northlands meeting and hooked up with agent Jack Lauzon. "If everything goes well, I'll stay here."

Perfect Shower to winter in Florida

Perfect Shower, making his first start since upsetting the Breeders' Stakes over 1 1/2 miles of turf here Aug. 21, finished eighth in a second-level allowance at the same distance over the Keeneland course on Wednesday.

Ridden by the first time by Calvin Borel, Perfect Shower raced three wide throughout and was one-paced through the closing stages while beaten 5 3/4 lengths.

"He got sick, and was off for a while," said Roger Attfield, who trains Perfect Shower for owner-breeder Charles Fipke. "He probably needed the race."

Perfect Shower will remain at Keeneland and then head down to Florida with Attfield's Payson Park troops.

Leslie reelected HBPA president

Sue Leslie has been reelected as president of the local Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, the organization announced Thursday.

The new board of directors also reelected Bill Diamant as vice president, owners, and Nick Gonzalez, vice president, trainers. Trainer Danny Vella was elected secretary-treasurer.