10/12/2011 1:34PM

Woodbine: European contingent all in


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The Europeans are in the house for Sunday’s three Grade 1 turf stakes here at Woodbine.

A total of 20 overseas horses were announced last week as prospects for the $1.5 million Canadian International, $1 million E.P. Taylor and $500,000 Nearctic and every single one of them is now here at Woodbine.

The Canadian International, a 1 1/2-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward, attracted a record nine European invaders.

The E.P. Taylor, a 1 1/4-mile turf race for fillies and mares, has lured eight fillies and mares from overseas while the $500,000 Nearctic, a six-furlong turf race, is the target of three of the European shippers.

Joshua Tree, Mores Wells, and Redwood were among the four Europeans who shipped over for last year’s Canadian International and finished 1-2-3 in the field of nine, separated by just a head and a nose.

Trained by Aidan O’Brien when he won last year’s Canadian International as a 3-year-old, Joshua Tree was sold early this winter and now is trained by Marco Botti.

Adam Kirby has picked up the mount on Joshua Tree, who is coming off a third-place finish in a Germany’s Grosser Prix von Baden in which he was beaten 13 lengths by subsequent Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner Danedream.

“The ground was far too soft for him,” said Botti assistant Claire Ricks, who is here with Joshua Tree.

“Under the circumstances, he ran very well.”

Joshua Tree is the first Woodbine starter for both Botti and Kirby.

Mores Wells also has a new trainer for his second visit here as Mike Delzangles has taken over from Richard Gibson.

The 7-year-old Mores Wells prepped for the Canadian International last year with a victory in the Stockholm Cup International and was beaten a half-length in this year’s renewal of the Group 3 race

“He’s good,” said traveling head lass Julie Harrison, who also was with Mores Wells for several years when he was trained by Richard Gibson.

“We’re happy with his condition.”

Sebastien Maillot, who was making his Canadian debut in last year’s Canadian International, also has ridden Mores Wells in his Swedish preps.

Redwood shipped over to win last year’s Grade 1 Northern Dancer over 1 1/2 miles on turf and made another transatlantic crossing fewer than four weeks later for the Canadian International.

The scenario has changed this time around, as Redwood has been pointing for the Canadian International since finishing fourth in the Group 3 Glorious Stakes at Goodwood on July 29.

“He’s had a quieter time this year,” said traveling head lad Geoffrey Snook, who was here with Redwood last year.

“We were looking at the race, even from last year, now that we now he travels long distances real good.”

Charlie Hills, here with Redwood last year as an assistant to his father, Barry Hills, now will be the trainer of record and his brother, Michael Hills, again has the mount.

First-time travelers

Quest for Peace and Arctic Cosmos, the 1-2 finishers in Ascot’s Group 3 Cumberland Lodge Stakes on Oct. 1, will be making their first appearances outside the British Isles.

“We just got him around the end of July,” said Sara Cumani, wife of trainer Luca Cumani, who is here with Quest for Peace.

“We got to know the horse, and he did very well.

“When he won the Cumberland Lodge, we decided he would be a good one to send here. He’s very good right now.”

Luca Cumani won the 1988 Canadian International with Infamy and the same year’s E.P. Taylor with Sudden Love.

He also won the E.P. Taylor with Zomaradah in 1998 and was represented by fourth-place finisher Contredanse in the race last year.

Kieren Fallon, who rides Quest for Peace, will be appearing in the Canadian International for the third time and finished second with both Fruits of Love in 1999 and Simonas in 2004.

Arctic Cosmos, who is trained by John Gosden and will be ridden by William Buick, had been off for more than a year before his Cumberland Lodge run.

“There was no pace in the race, and he had to make his own pace,” said traveling head lad Les Reynolds.

“If everything was good for him after he ran there, he was going to come here. We’re very pleased with him.”

Gosden’s most recent starter here was Rainbow View, runner-up in the 2009 E.P. Taylor. Buick won that race with the rank outsider Lahaleeb.

Brown has pair to go

Trainer Herman Brown has two Canadian International candidates in Bronze Cannon and Mikhail Glinka.

Bronze Cannon has made his last four starts on synthetic surfaces and most recently was second in the Group 3 September Stakes over 1.5 miles at Kempton.

“He surprised us; he ran really well,” said assistant trainer Nico Iguacel. “That’s why we brought him here.”

Bronze Cannon’s rider, Tom Queally, will be making his Canadian debut.

Mikhail Glinka finished fourth last time out in the listed Fortune Stakes over one mile on turf at Sandown.

“That was to sharpen him up, and prepared him for this race,” said Iguacel.

In his most recent start, six months earlier, Mikhail Glinka had finished fourth in the Grade 3 Dubai Duty Free over two miles of turf.

Mikhail Glinka’s jockey, Bernard Fay’d Herbe, also will be competing in Canada for the first time.

Treasure Beach seeks O’Brien triple

Treasure Beach, who will be making his second appearance in North America this year bafter defeating fellow 3-year-olds in the Grade 1 Secretariat over 1 1/2 miles on yielding turf at Arlington, will be looking to give O’Brien a third Canadian International tally.

O’Brien’s first Canadian International success came with Ballingarry in 2002. His other four Canadian International starters included Brian Boru, who finished third in both 2003 and 2004.

Colm O’Donoghue, who made his Woodbine debut aboard Joshua Tree last year, will be seeking a Canadian International repeat with Treasure Beach.

In his last start, which came in the Prix de l’Arc Triomphe, Treasure Beach acted as a pacemaker for his stablemate, St Nicholas Abbey.

Treasure Beach retreated to finish 14th in the field of 16, while St Nicholas Abbey was beaten four lengths as the fifth-place finisher.

Soumillon a factor

Sarah Lynx, the only female in the Canadian International lineup, finished fourth last time out in the Group 1 Prix Vermeille at Longchamp.

Four weeks earlier, Sarah Lynx won a Group 2 stakes over about 1 9/16 miles on turf at Deauville with rider Christophe Soumillon in the irons.

Trained by John Hammond, Sarah Lynx also was nominated to the E.P. Taylor.

“This distance is much better for her and we get to use Soumillon,” said traveling head lass Kate Headley. “He gets the best out of her.”

Soumillon had committed to ride Adventure Seeker for trainer Alan de Royer-Dupre in the E.P. Taylor, which he won aboard Reggane last year in his first Canadian appearance.