12/16/2012 6:48PM

Woodbine: Heathcote's Valedictory romp brings down curtain on 2012 meet

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Michael Burns
Emma Wilson collects her third win on Sunday's closing-day card at Woodbine aboard easy wire-to-wire winner Heathcote in the Grade 3 Valedictory.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario — Heathcote led virtually all the way in a blow-out score Sunday in the 60th running of the $177,700 Valedictory Stakes, the closing-day feature of the Woodbine meet. 

Heathcote set moderate fractions in the 1 ¾-mile marathon, while being hounded at times by Quaesitor. He opened up a clear lead heading into the far turn for the second time, and then coasted home on top by 12 ¼ lengths, in 2:59.42. 

Peyton rallied three-wide to beat out Quaesitor for second. New York shipper Imperial Pippin, the slight favorite over Peyton, was a non-threatening eighth in the nine-horse field.

The Grade 3 Valedictory was the third winner on the card for Emma Wilson, who got a leg up from trainer Paul Attard on Heathcoate, a Chiefswood Stable homebred.

“Paul had been pointing this horse to this race,” said Wilson. “He’s a big horse, with a big, long stride, which is his asset. We knew that the mile and three-quarters wasn’t going to hurt him at all. When I got him cruising with his ears up the whole way, I thought it would take a racehorse to beat him. He could have gone around again.”

Heathcote, who paid $14 to win, earned $108,000 in his stakes debut.