08/08/2011 12:41PM

Woodbine: Paso Doble gets some class relief in Shepperton Stakes

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Michael Burns
Paso Doble will get some class relief in Wednesday's Wednesday’s $125,000 Shepperton Stakes at Woodbine.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Paso Doble gets some noteworthy class relief for Wednesday’s $125,000 Shepperton Stakes and could dance his way into the winner’s circle after the 6 1/2-furlong sprint for Ontario-sired runners at Woodbine.

Paso Doble was essentially a need-the-lead type before joining trainer Mark Casse’s barn this year and has evolved into an effective stalker/closer.

“He’s learned to relax and rate,” Casse said. “Before, he hardly passed a horse in all his starts. He worked quite nice the other day, which seems to be an indicator that he’s on his game, that he’ll throw a good one.”

Paso Doble never challenged on opening day in the Debut Stakes, but he rallied from sixth to land a six-furlong optional claimer a month later on May 1. He came from an early stalking position to capture his first stakes in the restricted New Providence over six furlongs May 22.

Paso Noble earned his second straight Beyer Speed Figure of 90 two starts back, when he wound up a close sixth in the Grade 2 Highlander Stakes on turf, but he couldn’t keep up most recently in the rapidly run Bold Venture Stakes.

Casse said the open Bold Venture was too tough for Paso Doble, but he was content with the gelding’s performance in the Highlander.

“He can get a little asthma, and sometimes the air will bother him,” Casse said. “I almost didn’t run him in the Highlander because of that, but he got better, and I thought his race was quite good.”

Patrick Husbands will ride Paso Doble, who will break from post 1 as the 124-pound co-highweight.

Don’s Folly took the five-furlong Debut with a big wide rally and has been sidelined since ending up third in the New Providence. He is seemingly aiming for the Sept. 5 Kenora, a stakes for graduates of local yearling sales that he won his last year.

Don’s Folly will carry 124 pounds, including Emma Wilson, who was aboard for his two starts this year.

Officeinthevalley notched a seven-furlong optional claimer from off the pace in his second start off the bench and then ran another fine race most recently on turf, when second to favored Stormy Lord in the Ontario Jockey Stakes. He defeated Ontario-sired 3-year-olds on the grass in last year’s Vice Regent Stakes.

Daniel Be Good figures to lead the way as he goes back to the Polytrack off a subpar showing on the grass.