12/02/2006 12:00AM

Palace Pier pulls Ontario Lassie surprise


Palace Pier ($26.20) held off 4-5 favorite Catch the Thrill for her first stakes victory in the $150,800 Ontario Lassie at Woodbine.

Palace Pier led throughout the 1o1/16-mile race for Ontario-bred 2-year-old fillies, setting quick fractions of 24.01 and 47.62 seconds. Catch the Thrill commenced a four-wide rally on the far turn and took dead aim at Palace Pier in the stretch, but Palace Pier dug in and prevailed by three-quarters of a length. Love You Crazy was a distant third in the seven-horse field.

"I tried to steal it, and that's exactly what we did," said Todd Kabel, who rode Palace Pier for trainer Darwin Banach.

Palace Pier ran the distance in 1:46.69, earning $90,000 for owner Bill Sorokolit.

Earlier, Dancer's Bajan overcame a wide trip to capture the $125,800 Kingarvie for Ontario-sired 2-year-olds.

Dancer's Bajan went five wide on the first turn before closing four wide from midpack to win by a nose over 10-1 shot D Bold Ruler, who mounted a wide rally after missing the break. After establishing a tepid pace, favored Legal Move wound up a half-length back in third in the seven-horse field.

Dancer's Bajan ($5.50) covered 1o1/16 miles in 1:48.35 under Corey Fraser. He banked $75,000 in his second consecutive stakes score, for Three Sons Racing Stable Ltd.

"This horse has a lot of heart," said trainer Bob Tiller, who nailed down his 10th stakes win of the year in the Kingarvie. "I'm very happy with him."