07/26/2013 12:36PM

Woodbine: Sensible Lady tries slightly longer distance in Royal North

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Sensible Lady, who has primarily raced in turf races at five or 5 1/2 furlongs, will try six furlongs in Sunday's Royal North.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Sensible Lady has been with trainer Alan Goldberg for just the past month after making the first 16 starts of her career for Tim Salzman.

A turf sprint specialist now owned by Richard Santulli, Sensible Lady has shipped up from New Jersey and will be looking to become a Grade 3 stakes winner in Sunday’s Royal North Stakes, a six-furlong turf race for fillies and mares at Woodbine.

“We just wanted to try her three-quarters,” said Goldberg, who is based at Colts Neck Stables in New Jersey. “She seems to be doing all right.”

Sensible Lady, who checked in to Woodbine on Friday, has won 9 of 17 career starts, including six listed turf stakes at 5 or 5 1/2 furlongs.

She has tried six furlongs of turf just once, finishing fifth when making her fourth career start and stakes debut back in September 2011, but her closing style could play well on the expansive E.P. Taylor turf course.

“She kind of can just sit, and when you punch her it looks like she’ll give you a good kick, hopefully,” said Goldberg.

Justin Stein has picked up the mount on Sensible Lady, who should have speed to run at after breaking from post 4 in the Royal North.

Up With the Birds preps for Breeders’

Up With the Birds and His Race to Win, working for the first time since the July 7 Queen’s Plate, breezed five furlongs in 1:02.20 while going in company on the turf training course here Friday morning.

“They just went along head and head,” said Malcolm Pierce, who conditions the homebred colts for Sam-Son Farm. “It was just a maintenance breeze.”

Exercise rider Mark Ramsammy was aboard Up With the Birds, who closed strongly to miss by just a half-length as the Queen’s Plate runner-up. Chris Garroway handled His Race to Win, a non-threatening sixth in the 1 1/4-mile Queen’s Plate.

“We’re thinking Breeders’ Stakes for Up With the Birds and we’re probably thinking a different direction with His Race to Win,” said Pierce. “I don’t think His Race to Win is a mile-and-a-half horse.”

The $500,000 Breeders’ Stakes, a 1 1/2-mile turf race which is the final leg of the Triple Crown for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds, will be run here Aug. 18.

Up With the Birds ran well on the turf in his first two starts this year, winning the Black Gold over about 7 1/2 furlongs at the Fair Grounds and finishing second, beaten a neck, in the Grade 3 Transylvania over one mile at Keeneland.

Hobnobsnob sharpens for Victoriana

Hobnobsnob breezed four furlongs on the training turf course in 47 seconds here Friday in preparation for Wednesday evening’s $125,000 Victoriana Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile turf race for Ontario-sired fillies and mares.

Owned by Susan Rasmussen and trained by Earl Barnett, Hobnobsnob had made 15 career starts coming into this season, all in restricted company, but had just a second and a third to show for her efforts.

The 4-year-old Hobnobsnob has taken a new lease on life this year, however, racing above her conditions when winning a second-level allowance at seven furlongs and then winning at the same level at 1 1/16 miles.

“She won’t run on any surface except grass,” said Barnett. “She’s got some talent, and I think she’s getting better and better.”

Moonlit Beauty, the defending champion in the Victoriana, also breezed Friday morning, going five furlongs in 1:02 under her trainer, John LeBlanc.

The others in the field of 10 are Bear’s Gem, Best Gift of All, Consecutive, Estella, Hurricane Lorraine, It’s Gail, Let’s Forget It, Lynnessa, Niigon’s Princess, Reconnect, and Sava River.

Reconnect finished second in the Victoriana last year.

Seagram Cup highlights six-stakes weekend

Six stakes are scheduled for the upcoming long weekend, although one of those, Sunday’s $100,000 Etobicoke for fillies and mares, is an overnight stakes which would require a field of at least five to be carded.

The Grade 3, $150,000 Seagram Cup, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward, is on tap for Saturday along with the $125,000 Nandi, a six-furlong race for Ontario-foaled 2-year-old fillies.

James Street and Alpha Bettor, well beaten by the Pacific Classic-bound Delegation as the respective second- and third-place finishers in the 1 1/4-mile Dominion Day here July 1, head the prospective field for the Seagram Cup.

Other candidates include Any Given Royal, Patrioticandproud, Peyton, and Ultimate Destiny.

On Rainbow Bridge and Paladin Bay, the 1-2 finishers in the 5 1/2-furlong Shady Well for Ontario-foaled 2-year-old fillies here July 14, are set to renew their rivalry in the Nandi.

Sunday’s headliner will be the $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes, a 1 1/4-mile turf race for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies.

Spring in the Air, fourth in the Queen’s Plate, ran second when travelling a mile in last fall’s Grade 2 Natalma Stakes and is a leading Wonder Where candidate.

Trainer Mark Casse was keeping his options open for Spring in the Air, however, with entries to be taken Saturday for Tuesday’s Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie.

Nipissing, who left Spring in the Air in second place in the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks but then was a distant eighth in the Queen’s Plate, can run next weekend either in the Wonder Where or in Monday’s Eternal Search.

Surtsey upset the one-mile Ontario Damsel in her turf debut here July 14 and will be looking to come right back in the Wonder Where.

The $125,000 Eternal Search is a 1 1/16-mile race for Ontario-sired 3-year-old fillies and leading candidates include the stakes-placed Strut the Course and Dancing Bay.

The $125,000 Shepperton, a 6 1/2-furlong stakes for Ontario-sired 3-year-olds and upward, also will be contested on Monday with the multiple stakes winner Paso Doble and the streaking Phil’s Dream looming as the horses to beat.

Charity golf tournament

The entry box is open for the seventh annual Racetrack Chaplaincy of Canada golf tournament, which will be held Aug. 19 at Banty’s Roost Golf and Country Club at 12600 Bramalea Road, Caledon East.

This year’s function will be known as the Audre Cappuccitti Memorial Golf Tournament, in honor of the popular trainer/owner/breeder who died last November.

Tickets including lunch, golf, dinner and a silent auction are available at $150, with dinner and silent auction only at $75. Tickets paid for by Aug. 1 will be discounted by $10.

Registration and lunch begin at noon, with the first tee times set for 1 p.m.

All proceeds go to the Race Track Chaplaincy.

To purchase tickets or for more information contact chaplain Shawn Kennedy at (905) 713-4783 or chaplainshawn@hotmail.com.