08/29/2013 2:54PM

Woodbine: Ross enjoys big night with Go Greeley, Lexie Lou

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Michael Burns
Go Greeley (No. 2) beats Spin the King by a nose in Wednesday's Simcoe Stakes at Woodbine.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The first Wednesday-evening yearling sales stakes program had something for everyone – and a little bit more for trainer John Ross, who captured the two 6 1/2-furlong, $200,000 stakes for juveniles with Go Greeley and Lexie Lou.

Go Greeley prevailed by a nose in the Simcoe Stakes for 2-year-old males, avenging his lone defeat by running down Spin the King and giving jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva his third stakes winner of the night.

One race earlier, Lexie Lou had been beaten a nose by On Rainbow Bridge in the Muskoka Stakes for 2-year-old fillies but was promoted to first place when the stewards ruled that she had been interfered with during the stretch run.

“I still can’t believe it; it hasn’t sunk in yet,” Ross said. “And to own both of them, too – all I can say is, ‘Wow.’ ”

Ross had purchased Go Greeley for $40,000 at last year’s select session of the local yearling sale for the Jam Jar Racing Stable of longtime client Bud Reynolds, who died suddenly last winter. When Reynolds’s wife and children elected not to carry on with racing, Ross acquired Go Greeley privately and now has sent out the colt to win four of five starts and $370,260.

“I’m overwhelmed by what a trooper he is,” said Ross, who watched Go Greeley win his third stakes in less than six weeks. “He deserves a rest now.”

Ross is looking at the Oct. 6 Grey Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile race that offers Grade 3 status and a purse of $150,000, as a possible spot for Go Greeley.

“I’m sort of taking a look at the Grey,” Ross said. “I’ve been stretching him out little by little.”

Lexie Lou, purchased by Ross for himself for $5,500 at the open session of the local sale, became a stakes winner in the Muskoka and has earned $157,750, with two wins from four starts under jockey Gary Boulanger.

Ross raced Lexie Lou with blinkers for the second time in the Muskoka, having watched her finish a solid fourth in the six-furlong Nandi Stakes on Aug. 3 in her first start with the equipment.

“She’s responded well,” Ross said. “I love it when it comes together.”

Lexie Lou is eligible for the $125,000 Victorian Queen, a six-furlong race for Ontario-sired 2-year-old fillies here Sept. 28. But Ross has nominated the filly to the Sept. 14 Natalma Stakes, a one-mile turf race that offers Grade 2 status and is worth $200,000.

“I breezed her on the grass the other week, and she went really well,” Ross said. “I actually entered her in the Natalma prep last week, but it didn’t fill, so I popped back in here.”

Stakes winners eye Bunty Lawless

The 5-year-olds Good Better Best, the winner of Wednesday’s 1  1/16-mile Elgin Stakes for colts and geldings, and Welloiledmachine, victorious that night in the Halton Stakes over a mile on turf, could cross swords in the $125,000 Bunty Lawless Stakes here Oct. 20. The Bunty Lawless, at one mile on turf, is for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds and up.

Good Better Best, conditioned by Roger Attfield, was a $23,000 buyback at the local select sale and races for Dick Bonnycastle’s Harlequin Ranches.

“It just worked out the right way this time,” said Attfield, who watched Luis Contreras guide Good Better Best to his first stakes win in the $125,000 Elgin.

Good Better Best finished second behind this year’s Halton runner-up, Pender Harbour, in last year’s Bunty Lawless and has banked $360,290, with a record of 4-7-1 from 16 starts.

“I don’t think there’s much in it,” Attfield said when asked if Good Better Best has a preferred surface. “This year, everything for him has been on Polytrack, so it looks like it’s his preferred surface.”

Good Better Best’s dam, Miss Crissy, will be represented on two fronts this weekend. Her 3-year-old filly, Dont Miss Crissy, by Pleasant Tap, will look to win her maiden when making her fifth career start in a race scheduled for 1 1/4 miles on turf Saturday.

“She’s coming along good,” Attfield said. “I would think this distance would be good for her.”

On Monday evening, Miss Crissy’s 2-year-old colt by Marchfield will sell as hip No. 191 in the select sale.

Welloiledmachine, a $17,000 buy at the open session, recorded his third stakes win when he took the $125,000 Halton for the second time under rider Jim McAleney.

The buyers were Christine Windsor, who works as a groom for trainer Mike Keogh, and her husband, Dennis Windsor. One of Christine Windsor’s charges is Welloiledmachine, and she also groomed Mobil, the horse’s sire and a winner of three consecutive editions of the Halton from 2003-05.

“He ran to his works and his looks,” Keogh said of Welloiledmachine’s 2 3/4-length victory.

Welloiledmachine has banked $415,576, with a 6-2-2 record from 21 starts. His dam, Sleek and Powerful, has a Mast Track colt who will be offered as hip No. 244 in the Sept.  7 open session of the sale, but Christine Windsor is not planning to be among the bidders.

“One is enough,” she said.

Veterans get first stakes wins

Bear No Joke, an $80,000 buy at the local select sale, recorded his first stakes win Wednesday in the six-furlong, $125,000 Kenora. It was his first start since July and his first under da Silva.

“That was by design,” said trainer Reade Baker, who had watched Bear No Joke finish second in last year’s Kenora while running on a similar program. “I wanted him to come up there good.”

Baker said he had no immediate plan for Bear No Joke, who has earned $352,316, with a record 5-5-1 from 15 starts for the Bear Stables of Danny Dion.

Later on the card, Logan’s Peak notched her first stakes win for trainer Nick Gonzalez in the $125,000 Algoma at 1 1/16 miles for fillies and mares. Breeder Mary Ellen Kennedy had entered the 4-year-old filly in the open session of the yearling sale and had wanted Gonzalez, who was training a horse named Molly Maguire for her at Fort Erie at the time, to purchase her.

“She didn’t meet my requirements,” Gonzalez said. “She was a little crooked in front, so she bought her back, but I got to race her. I’ve had her ever since she was a baby. I knew from the early stages that she was going to be better with age and racing.”

Logan’s Peak was making her fourth start of the season in the Algoma and coming off a fourth-place finish in the 1 1/16-mile Ontario Matron Stakes, a Grade 3 race here July 20.

“I think we did a good job of managing her,” said Gonzalez, who runs his stable with the assistance of wife Martha. “She missed all those hot, sweltering days earlier. She came into this a fresh horse.”

Gonzalez is uncertain about his next move with Logan’s Peak, a daughter of Teuflesberg and Yukon Lady who has amassed $262,088, with a record of 4-4-4 from 18 outings, including two wins this year under da Silva.

Can’t Use Nellie, a 2-year-old filly by Mineshaft out of Yukon Lady, will make her debut for trainer Brian Lynch and owners Jim and Susan Hill in a six-furlong maiden race here Saturday.

“I’m hoping she’s going to turn into a Princess Elizabeth/Ontario Lassie-type filly,” Lynch said, referring to two 1 1/16-mile stakes here this fall. “Time will tell, but we think she has the makings of a nice, young filly.”