06/24/2011 11:49AM

Woodbine: Attfield has major-league duo in Singspiel

Bob Coglianese
Rahy's Attorney, with Emma-Jayne Wilson riding, wins the Pan American.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Trainer Roger Attfield will be in the spotlight Sunday as the trainer of Queen’s Plate favorite Check Your Soul.

But Attfield also will have a keen interest in the Grade 3, $150,000 Singspiel Stakes, a 1 1/2-mile turf race in which he will send out the formidable pair of Musketier and Simmard.

Attfield has won three of the six runnings of the Singspiel – with Pellegrino in 2007, Musketier in 2009, and Spice Route last year.

Even Daddy Cool, the stable pony whom Atttfield rides out with his string each morning, won the Singspiel in 2005, for trainer Sean Smullen.

But, the Attfield forces will face a formidable adversary on Sunday in Rahy’s Attorney, a 7-year-old gelding who has carved out a new niche as a long-distance turf runner this season and is coming off a front-running win in the 1 3/8-mile allowance prep for this race here on June 3.

“He seems sharp, and he’s good,” said trainer Ian Black.

“He can handle the mile and half, but it’s a pace thing with him. He can throw 12-second eighths at you as long as you want him to, but if he goes three-quarters in 1:15, it just keeps the closers in the race.”

Rahy’s Attorney looks to be the controlling speed of the Singspiel, and his rider for his last three mounts, Emma-Jayne Wilson, will be looking to exploit that advantage.

Simmard, who stalked the pace and closed to fall just a neck shy of Rahy’s Attorney in the Singspiel prep, will be looking to turn the tables under Patrick Husbands.


“He’s been knocking on the door, many, many times, but it’s been a while since he got it done in a stakes race,” said Attfield, who sent out Simmard to win the Chief Bearhart over 1 1/4 miles on yielding turf in 2009.

Musketier, now 9 years old, already is a Grade 2 stakes winner this year, as he rallied from well off the pace to capture the Elkhorn over 1 1/2 miles on April 29 at Churchill Downs.

Simmard finished 2 1/2 lengths back in fourth there, after experiencing traffic problems.

Running back four weeks later in the Grade 3 Louisville Handicap, Musketier failed to mount a serious rally and failed to improve his position while ending fifth.

“They were just walking up front. It was almost laughable,” said Attfield, noting that the first six furlongs of the Louisville had been run in 1:19.

“He was behind horses, the way he likes to run, but behind fractions like that it was ridiculous.”

John Velazquez, in town to ride leading Queen’s Plate hopeful Queen’splatekitten, rode Musketier to victory in the last two runnings of the Elkhorn and will be back in the irons here Sunday.