11/21/2012 1:27PM

Woodbine: Quaesitor tries Polytrack marathon in Valedictory Stakes prep


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The steady Quaesitor will test his skills at 1 1/2 miles on the Polytrack Friday at Woodbine in the $89,400 allowance prep for the Grade 3 Valedictory Stakes.

Quaesitor got a late start to his season. After graduating in his seasonal bow June 30, he competed in the second and third legs of the Canadian Triple Crown. The son of Friends Lake was a wide fourth in the Prince of Wales Stakes on the dirt at Fort Erie and a commendable third in the 12-furlong Breeders’ Stakes here on the grass.

After ending up third in the allowance prep for the Ontario Derby, Quaesitor won a first-level allowance over 10 furlongs with determination Sept. 22. Nearly six weeks later in his last race, he captured a second-level allowance after tracking the leaders on the outside.

Gerry Olguin will ride Quaesitor again for Wayward Stable and trainer Ian Howard.

The versatile Serious Indeed figures to be the pacemaker under Justin Stein, who will get a leg up from trainer Alec Fehr.

Serious Indeed put together a series of fine efforts traveling extended distances on the grass during the second half of the meet, which included back-to-back thirds in starter-allowance company. Most recently over yielding ground, he prevailed in a 1 3/4-mile starter after holding off Get A Grip.

Get A Grip is winless since September 2011, when he captured a $25,000 conditioned claimer at Saratoga. He has improved with each subsequent start since returning from a summer break, and trainer Kevin Attard will try him with blinkers this time.

Village Drive is putting a three-race win streak on the line. He notched two consecutive low-level claimers here before romping in a 1 3/4-mile starter at Fort Erie on Oct. 9. He would have been favored in a 2-mile-and-70-yard marathon there on the closing day, a card that was canceled due to poor weather and track conditions.

Peyton was competitive in a pair of optional claimers this fall. He was the surprising favorite when a closing fourth to Quaesitor on Nov. 4. Earlier in the meet, Peyton finished up the track in both the Queen’s Plate and Breeders’.

Rounding out the field is the classy Guipago, who won the 2009 Vice Regent Stakes on the grass. Guipago hasn’t found the mark since July 2011 and has just a pair of thirds to his credit from eight outings this year.

If the weather cooperates, the $150,000 Valedictory will be contested over 1 3/4 miles here on closing day, Dec. 16.