07/05/2016 3:37PM

The week that was in racing, June 27-July 4, 2016

Michael Burns
Sir Dudley Digges wins Queen's Plate

Here's a collection of some of the biggest stories in horse racing, all in one place. Unless noted, all of the links here are to free stories on DRF.com.

Sir Dudley Digges goes north to capture Queen’s Plate

The richest race in North America over the July 4th weekend was not a graded stakes and it did not occur on American soil. The 157th running of the prestigious Queen’s Plate occurred Sunday at Woodbine, and although the race was restricted to 3-year-olds bred in Canada, it carried a $1 million purse, making it by far the richest race of the week. Sir Dudley Digges, a Kentucky shipper owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey, collared favored Amis Gizmo in deep stretch to win. It was the first stakes winner for sire Gio Ponti, and it’s not too surprising it came on a synthetic surface.

Off the Tracks earns first Grade 1 win

Off the Tracks earned her first Grade 1 win and her first stakes win since moving to the barn of Todd Pletcher in Saturday’s Mother Goose Stakes at Belmont Park. The front-running victory over a small, but tough field stated the case that she’s one of the top 3-year-old fillies in the East.

World Approval takes United Nations, keys big weekend for Casse

With Florent Geroux aboard, World Approval parlayed a perfect stalking trip behind 75-1 longshot Cement Clement into a 1 1/4-length victory in the Grade 1 United Nations on Sunday at Monmouth Park. The win capped a strong weekend for trainer Mark Casse, who won the Grade 2 Dance Smartly and the Charlie Barley at Woodbine on Sunday, after winning the Grade 3 Bashford Manor and Debutante at Churchill Downs on Saturday.

Dalmore adds to strong year for Desormeaux brothers

Kentucky Derby runner-up and Preakness winner Exaggerator may be the stable star, but trainer Keith and jockey Kent Desormoreaux have another promising 3-year-old colt on their hands. Dalmore benefitted from an ideal trip in the Grade 3 Affirmed Stakes on Saturday at Santa Anita, outdueling odds-on favorite Danzing Candy in the stretch and registering a Beyer Speed Figure of 102 for the win.

American Freedom dominates Iowa Derby

Bob Baffert has another promising 3-year-old colt. American Freedom ran his record to three wins in four starts with a convincing win in the Grade 3 Iowa Derby Friday night at Prairie Meadows.

Horses to watch

Santa Anita:
Trainer: Neil Drysdale
Last race: July 4, 5th
Finish: 6th by 2 3/4
Beyer: 74
This maiden filly is racing into shape. Pressed a strong pace inside, took back and raced inside, stayed in contention into lane, and tired late. She is a Malibu Moon filly produced by Grade 1 sprint winner Intangaroo, but might want two turns.

DRF Plus subscribers can see the rest of Brad Free’s horses to watch from last week by clicking here.

reporting by Alex Campbell, Jim Dunleavy, Ron Gierkink, Marcus Hersh, Mike Hogan, Byron King, Nicole Russo, John Sparkman, and Mike Watchmaker