09/16/2010 1:22PM

The Usual Q.T. among 13 entered for Woodbine Mile

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Michael Burns
The Usual Q.T. trains in the early morning rain Wednesday at Woodbine.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The Usual Q.T., one of three California shippers, drew post 11 at a ceremonial draw for Sunday’s Woodbine Mile in the trackside tent here Thursday afternoon.

The Grade 1, $1 million Woodbine Mile, a turf race for 3-year-olds and upward, attracted a field of 13, and The Usual Q.T. has been made the 3-1 morning-line favorite by Woodbine oddsmaker Ernie Perri.

The Woodbine Mile is a Breeders’ Cup Win and You’re In race, with the winner earning a free berth in the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Churchill Downs.

Victor Espinoza, who has been The Usual Q.T.’s regular rider since last fall, has the call for the Woodbine Mile.

Trainer Jim Cassidy, who was on hand for the draw, had mixed feelings about The Usual Q.T.’s post.

“I would have liked to have been a little further inside at a mile,” said Cassidy. “There are a few speed horses around him – he may lay third.”

The Usual Q.T. is one of four Grade 1 winners in the Woodbine Mile field, along with traveling companions Victor’s Cry and Crowded House and New York invader Court Vision.

Based recently at Saratoga for trainer Richard Dutrow Jr., Court Vision has been pegged as the 7-2 second choice and will begin from post 4.

Victor’s Cry, conditioned by Eoin Harty, is the third choice at 4-1 and will break from post 2 under Corey Nakatani.

Famous Name, a winner of 9 of 18 starts while campaigning in Ireland and France for trainer Dermot Weld, and is listed at 6-1. Pat Smullen has the mount on Famous Name, who will start from post 12.

Crowded House, trained by Ben Cecil and with rider Joel Rosario slated to make his Canadian debut, is 12-1 in the morning line and drew post 1.

Grand Adventure, conditioned by Mark Frostad and considered to be the best of four local hopefuls, is an 8-1 chance and will start from post 13 under regular rider Patrick Husbands.

“I’d rather be outside than inside,” said Frostad, who was at the Keeneland sales on Thursday. “It’s fine. He’s got enough tactical speed to be where he wants to be.”

◗ Sunday’s card also will feature the Grade 1, $750,000 Northern Dancer, a 1 1/2-mile turf race for 3-year-olds and upward, and the Grade 2, $300,000 Canadian, a 1 1/8-mile turf race for fillies and mares.

Marsh Side, the defending champion in the Northern Dancer, is 5-2 on the morning line for the nine-horse field, which includes shippers Expansion from New York, Memorial Maniac from Illinois, and Redwood from England.

The Canadian attracted just six entrants, with Miss Keller the 3-2 favorite and Points of Grace next in line at 9-5.