Updated on 09/18/2011 4:12AM

Sky Conqueror scores Northern Dancer repeat


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Sky Conqueror made a case that he is perhaps the leading turf runner on the continent with a decisive victory in the Grade 2, $698,200 Northern Dancer Breeders' Cup Turf at Woodbine Sunday.

Earlier this year, Sky Conqueror won the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on Kentucky Derby Day at Churchill Downs. Sunday's victory was his second straight in the mile and a half Northern Dancer.

Sky Conqueror, who was ridden by Edgar Prado for the first time in the Northern Dancer, returned $4.50 as the favorite and banked $420,000 for owner Bill Sorokolit and trainer Darwin Banach.

French Beret set slow fractions over firm ground while being tracked by Last Answer. Sky Conqueror raced nearly 10 lengths off the lead on the backstretch, and was angled wide for the drive. He kicked in strongly through the stretch, and overhauled Jambalaya at the eighth pole en route to a length and a half score, in a time of 2:27.45.

"He broke running," said Prado. "He was very happy at the back of the back, but every time I asked him for something, he responded right away. I never had to hit him. I just showed him the whip in the stretch, and he took off."

Marsh Side closed inside to finish second, in his first start since taking the Valedictory Stakes here Dec. 10. Jambalaya wound up third, and was followed by Last Answer, Obrigado, The Carbon Unit, Pellegrino, and French Beret.

Masseuse takes Dance Smartly

New York invader Masseuse ($6.40) prevailed in a three-way win photo in the Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes, over about nine furlongs on the grass.

Masseuse came from third under Prado, and made the lead with a furlong left before holding on to win by a nose over May Night, with Elle Runaway another neck back in third.

Last year’s Canadian Horse of the Year, Arravale, the 4-5 favorite, set the pace before fading in the stretch, and trailed the six-horse field of fillies and mares.

Trained by Jim Toner, Masseuse covered the one-turn distance in 1:45.55, and earned $180,000 of the $304,900 purse.

"She's a very competitive mare," said Toner. "She just lays it on the line for you."

* She's Indy Money ($5.60) held off Arden Belle in the stretch to notch her first stakes in the $138,400 Ontario Matron.

Garrett Gomez rode She's Indy Money, who stalked inside until the far turn and then came outside for the drive to prevail by a neck, in a time of 1:44.22 for a mile and a sixteenth. Be Envied finished third, and favored Executive Flight was fourth.

* Gangster ($7) rallied wide from sixth and last under Todd Kabel to land his first stakes in the $125,400 Bold Venture.

Favored Just Rushing edged Museeb for second, while ending up a neck behind Gangster, who ran six and a half furlongs in 1:16.02.