09/13/2015 4:55PM

Strut the Course finishes strongly in Canadian

Michael Burns
Strut the Course, with Luis Contreras aboard, earns her second Grade 2 stakes win of the Woodbine meet in the Canadian.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario — Strut the Course, last year’s Canadian champion female runner, came charging from the back of the pack under Luis Contreras to win Sunday’s Grade 2, $338,000 Canadian Stakes, a Breeders’ Cup Win and You’re In event on the Woodbine Mile undercard.

Strut the Course bided her time in eighth on the backstretch, as Bear’s Pride set a lively pace in the about nine-furlong turf route for fillies and mares. 

Strut the Course was blocked behind a wall of horses at the head of the stretch. After finding a seam at the eighth pole, she kicked in strongly to outrun Button Down by a half-length for the win, in a time of 1:49.56 over yielding ground.

The favored Maryland shipper Hoop of Colour finished another half-length back in third. Uchenna wound up fourth in a field reduced to 10 with the scratch of Habibi.

Strut the Course ($9.60) earned $216,000 in her second Grade 2 stakes score of the meet for owner-breeder John Unger.

“[Contreras] knows her well, and she made a great run,” said trainer Barb Minshall. “We were aiming for this race for quite a while.”

Strut the Course is not Breeders’ Cup nominated. Minshall said Strut the Course, a 5-year-old daughter of Strut the Stage, could make her next start in the Grade 1 E.P. Taylor Stakes here Oct. 18.