05/18/2006 11:00PM

Questuary jumps into Selene

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Michael Burns Photo Ltd.
Gumboots, winning the six-furlong Fanfreluche last year, will train up to the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks on June 11.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Questuary, one of six entrants here in Sunday's $250,000 Selene at Woodbine, already has earned herself a footnote in the local stakes record books.

Owned by Wayward Stable and trained by Ian Howard, Questuary is the first horse to take advantage of the expanded supplementary entry option offered for the first time for the majority of Woodbine stakes this year.

Questuary, who was not on the original list of 33 3-year-old fillies nominated at a cost of $250 to the Grade 3 Selene, was supplemented at a cost of $5,000 at entry time on Thursday. The $5,000 includes the regular entry fee of $2,500.

"To be frank, I forgot to nominate her," said Howard. "So, it's going to cost us an extra couple of thousand to see if she should run. With six horses and this much money it's worth being in. I'm surprised more didn't show up."

Questuary, an Ontario-sired daughter of Archers Bay, finished her first campaign with a flourish, running second here in the 1 1/16-mile South Ocean and then winning her maiden and a first-level allowance at the same distance.

Those performances raised the hopes of Questuary's connections for the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks, a 1 1/8-mile race for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies here June 11.

"The Oaks was always her race," said Howard. "Basically, she always finishes. She's not blessed with a lot of speed. She's also a big, long horse and loses a little ground on the turns. She hasn't quite figured it all out yet."

Questuary, who wintered in Ontario, will be making her second start of the season in the 1 1/16-mile Selene. She finished third behind a pair of older fillies while competing under second-level allowance terms at 1 1/16 miles here May 4.

"I had to run there to get a race into her," said Howard. "I would have run her at seven furlongs, but her race didn't go. She didn't run badly; she had a little trouble on the first turn. If she improves off that race, she should have a chance Sunday.

"It looks like there should be enough pace. And, if she runs well, she'll be really set up for the Oaks."

Gumboots skips Selene, will train into Oaks

Gumboots, who is 2 for 2 here this spring and is coming off a win in the seven-furlong Fury on May 7, was nominated to the Selene but will not be participating.

"We decided to go straight to the Oaks with her," said Josie Carroll, who trains Gumboots for owner-breeder Thor Eaton. "It seemed to be the best move for her at this point. She's coming out of a solid race, and the Selene would mean bringing her back pretty quickly.

"This way she gets plenty of time going into the Oaks. She's a very trainable filly; it shouldn't be any problem."

Gumboots, who wintered with Carroll in California, won the five-furlong prep for the Star Shoot Stakes in her seasonal debut here April 9. She also won the six-furlong Fanfreluche last year, when she went 2 for 3 here, but has yet to race past seven furlongs.

Vibank exits Queenston with ankle problems

Vibank, a Canadian-bred 3-year-old colt trained by Carroll for James and Alice Sapara, has been sidelined after finishing last of seven in the seven-furlong Queenston here May 6.

"We did a nuclear scan on him and found some problems with an ankle," said Carroll. "He'll be on the farm for 60 to 90 days."

Vibank won the five-furlong Victoria last year and finished second in the six-furlong Woodstock here this spring.

Allowance win gives 'Breanna' shot at Oaks

Sweet Breanna, owned by Les Pereira and trained by Steve Attard, is slated to make her next start in the Woodbine Oaks after romping in a first-level allowance at 1 1/16 miles here last Saturday with apprentice jockey Justin Stein in the irons.

"She's awesome right now," said Attard. "She's getting better and better."

Sweet Breanna raced seven times at 2, winning her maiden at 1 1/16 miles in her final appearance.

After starting up in late January at the nearby farm and training center of Paul Buttigieg, Sweet Breanna joined Attard here when the backstretch opened in mid-February.

On April 30, Sweet Breanna made her seasonal debut, finishing a closing second in a first-level allowance at seven furlongs.

"We knew we were going to run first out at seven furlongs, and we knew it was too short for her," said Attard. "Les and I discussed it afterwards, and he said we were going to the Oaks. And, we wanted to go into the Oaks a winner."

Given the choice of the May 13 allowance and an identical event two weeks later, Attard opted to run Sweet Breanna in the former.

"She was training so good," said Attard. "And, that gave her a month before the Oaks. We'd always hoped she was an Oaks filly, and she's a totally different horse than she was last year. She's bigger and stronger."

Alumni Hall arrives for Eclipse

Alumni Hall, a Kentucky-bred 7-year-old, checked into Woodbine on Friday morning for his engagement in Monday's Grade 3, $150,000 Eclipse Handicap.

The Eclipse, a 1 1/16-mile race for 4-year-olds and upward, attracted a field of eight.

Alumni Hall, who is trained by Neil Howard and will be ridden by Robby Albarado, is coming off a second-place finish behind a very sharp Wanderin Boy in the Grade 3 Ben Ali at 1 1/8 miles at Keeneland on April 27.

* The local division of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will sponsor a T-shirt giveaway to the first 2,000 fans beginning at 11 a.m. on the second floor of the grandstand here Sunday.