11/19/2012 5:22PM

Woodbine: Young trainer Ferris gets first win


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Chante Dan missed a scheduled start in the final race here Nov. 2 when her rider booked off late and her trainer, Preston Ferris, was unable to secure a replacement.

“It was frustrating,” said Ferris. “No one would ride her. She was scratched in the paddock. But, it all worked out.”

Ferris, 25, was in a forgiving mood here Sunday morning after Chante Dan delivered the trainer’s first career victory in the final race on Saturday.

Chante Dan, a homebred 4-year-old filly who races for owner Tricia Greer, rallied from off the pace under Steven Bahen to capture the restricted $10,000 claiming race at odds of almost 21-1.

“She can be difficult to work with,” said Ferris. “She’s not easy to get to the frontside.”

Ferris, born in Calgary but raised in Kentucky, has a pure racetrack pedigree.

His father, Alex Ferris, rode for 25 years and recorded more than 800 winners before retiring in the summer of 2003, and his mother, Frances Adams, trained in Kentucky for several years and at Northlands Park last season.

His grandfather, the late Smiley Adams, trained the likes of Master Derby, winner of the 1975 Preakness, and Run Dusty Run, who chased Seattle Slew when second in the 1977 Kentucky Derby, third in the Preakness, and second in the Belmont.

“I graduated high school, but the racetrack is all I’ve been doing since I was a little kid, and it’s all I’m ever going to do,” said Ferris, adding that he has been galloping horses for 11 years since beginning at Keeneland at the tender age of 14.

After spending some time at Hastings Park as an assistant trainer in the spring of 2011, Ferris took out his trainer’s license here that summer. His first charge was a horse named Special Moment, who was owned by Tricia Greer and Mervyn Kirby.

“The owners had asked me to come to the farm and work with the horse, and they liked what I did,” said Ferris. “They’ve been really good clients.”

Ferris currently has three horses here for Greer, with Go Shermin Go and Rhythm of Rock joining Chante Dan in his shed row.

Go Shermin Go, a 2-year-old gelding, has been knocking on the door in his last two starts, both at the maiden $20,000 claiming level, and Rhythm of Rock, a 3-year-old gelding, is coming off an encouraging effort in the $10,000 maiden ranks.

“I’d love for the clientele to come in, but it’s not going to happen overnight,” said Ferris. “It’s a work in progress.”

Nipissing does her thing

Nipissing was 3 for 3 under her regular rider Steven Bahen, and her four opponents looked to be in deep water here in Sunday’s $125,000 South Ocean, a 1 1/16-mile stakes for Ontario-sired 2-year-old fillies.

“I think she was much the best on paper,” said Rachel Halden, who conditions the homebred Nipissing for the Chiefswood Stable of Robert and Mark Krembil. “Steve and I discussed it, and decided he just should ride her like she was the best horse and stay out of trouble. That’s what he did.”

Nipissing did her bit as well, relaxing nicely before moving to the lead and cruising to a four-length victory with her stablemate, the Paul Attard-trained Otonabee, completing a Chiefswood exactor.

The South Ocean was the second straight stakes win for Nipissing, who had captured the 1 1/16-mile Princess Elizabeth for Canadian-bred 2-year-old fillies. The South Ocean win brought her bankroll to $297,180.

“I think she’s done more than enough for us this year,” said Halden. “She deserves a break.”

Nipissing will winter with Halden at Palm Meadows with an eye toward next year’s Woodbine Oaks and possibly the Queen’s Plate.

“With her pedigree, and the way she gallops out so strong, I don’t think distance will be a problem,” said Halden.

Niigon’s Glory eying Kingarvie

Niigon’s Glory, a colt Halden trains for Chiefswood, could make his stakes debut here Dec. 2 in the 1 1/16-mile Kingarvie for Ontario-sired 2-year-olds. Like Nipissing and Otonabee, Niigon’s Glory is by the recently deceased Niigon.

“He’s come back well from his first race,” said Halden, who had sent out Niigon’s Glory to come from off the pace and win a restricted 1 1/16-mile maiden race by 2 1/2 lengths under Bahen here Nov. 11. “He showed a little class that day, coming up inside the way he did.

“He had thrown some decent works, but didn’t show much speed. It’s tough going a mile and a sixteenth first time out. It’s always in your mind; you’re not sure if you’ve done enough with them.”

Blue Heart wins Jammed Lovely

Blue Heart, rallying under a red-hot Luis Contreras, capped off her 2012 campaign here last Saturday with a head victory in the $150,000 Jammed Lovely Stakes.

“I thought it was a really game effort,” said Brian Lynch, who had watched the Jammed Lovely from Churchill Downs where he sent out Any Given Royal to finish a troubled fifth in the Grade 3 Commonwealth Turf and English Class to end a faltering sixth in the Grade 2 Mrs. Revere. “It was a good little field. I love it when she shows up like that.”

Blue Heart, owned by John and Jerry Amerman, had won the 1 1/16-mile Bison City for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies early this summer but was unplaced in two subsequent stakes tries here on the turf.

In the Jammed Lovely, Blue Heart was making her first start in almost three months and returning to the surface on which she has recorded each of her four victories.

“It was her last option for Ontario-bred 3-year-old fillies,” said Lynch. “It was the ideal spot for her. She’ll go down to Palm Meadows for the winter. Ideally I’d like to give her a freshening. We know she runs good fresh, and we’ll just point her for up here next year.”

Lynch, who still has more than 20 horses here, plans to have at least one more stakes starter with Clearly Now pointing for the 1 1/16-mile Display on Dec. 1.

“I’m looking forward to stretching him out, “ said Lynch, who has sent out the Kentucky-bred Clear Now to win his first two career starts, both at six furlongs for the Up Hill Stable of Lloyd Zenith and Jim and Susan Hill.

Wilson gets three days

Emma-Jayne Wilson has been suspended for three racing days, beginning Wednesday, after the stewards ruled she had veered out with her mount, May Fourteen, and caused interference to Uncle Carm during the stretch run of last Wednesday’s final race.

May Fourteen finished in a dead heat for first with Uncle Carm but was disqualified and placed second.

The stewards have approved Wilson’s request to ride in next Saturday’s Kennedy Road and Sunday’s Bessarabian, so she will serve the final day of her suspension on Wednesday, Nov. 28.

Josh More than 1 year ago
Poor Emma, she did what every other rider trys to do, bring her horse over to see the other horse coming and although it worked, she may have been a tad over agressive. Another reason to love Emma Wilson as a rider, keep it up Em, you're terrific.
Guy More than 1 year ago
Save Ferris !!!
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
how many articles does the racing form print about some guy winning a ten thousand dollar claimer wheras there are so many races to cover and not about the bottom of the barrel race such as this guy won...next they will do the same for another young trainer at los alamitos in california who wins his first race with a two thousand dollar claimer and write it like its a breeders cup race.
chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
All the badmouth from you, Todd, is not gonna slow this kid down.
Amy Hurley More than 1 year ago
While I enjoy the stakes race coverage in DRF, I also like to read about the people behind the horses - the jockeys, trainers, and owners that send these "$10,000 claimers" out to fill the cards day after day. Everybody has to start somewhere, and I like finding out about their backgrounds.
Preston Ferris More than 1 year ago
You must have a very sad life if you could post that much garbage.. Or you failed misserably in life!
Boom Dizzle More than 1 year ago
Great Story Preston, I'm sure Bob Baffert's first win wasn't a Breeders Cup, neither was Mark Casse or Mark Frostad at woodbine. It stories like yours that inspires youngsters somewhere not to throw in the towel but to keep at it...ur efforts will be rewarded
chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
You've nailed it Preston. There are alot of jokers out here who have no idea of what life in the shedrow is all about. You came up right where your Mother, and your Grandfather and other great Trainers like Shug, Romans and McLaughlin did. But they don't get on their own horses, so you've even got a leg up on them... Stick to it and your Horses will take you to the top.
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
THIS IS AMERICA and going by the first amendment, one has a right to their opinion and your response has nothing to do with my comment....who are you to judge me since you know nothing about me and the word assume means making a ass out of u and me...try and stick to the facts of any story and not be so childish as to call names...
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
you shouldnt put down chad mc rory like that preston,,shame on you
[removed] More than 1 year ago
This comment has been deleted
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
your right pauline,he never addresses any issues and if he doesnt agree with you,,he calls names like a fourth grader
Calling All Monsters More than 1 year ago
I get tired of the DRF reading like a celebrity magazine with headlines like "Pletcher has 2 promising young stars"... or "Baffert sends out a winner" ... Really? Its boring. Wow, a stakes horse won a stakes race! Boring! Todd Elliot obviously has no idea what it takes to get a horse to the races, let alone win a race. If he does, I ask him to layout the basics of getting a thoroughbred to the track, starting from breeding shed. "Todd Elliot raced wide, pulled up lame and was vanned off"
Preston Ferris More than 1 year ago
I'm pretty sure you have lost yet again!! Mr. Elliot.. But that is ok winning is winning and out of this deal I win! Chante dan wins and her owner wins.. You are just another poor poor man, but that is ok the world is full of bad attitudes such as your own. Thanks for the artle DRF it was well done.!
Preston Ferris More than 1 year ago
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
POOR PRESTON,,CANT TAKE OPINIONS,,I HAVE SEEN A GUY LIKE THIS BEFORE,,,THEY ARE CALLED DICTATORS,,, your name calling only reflects on you Preston...you sound like a sociopath i.e. a control freak
chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
This young Trainer has 'black type' all over his pedigree. Owners - take note.
Todd Elliot More than 1 year ago
black type parents of a human cannot beat any race horse
Josh More than 1 year ago
You have obviously never met his father. The guy was a mistake in the saddle. I am sure the mother's side contributes much more to the pedigree than average Alex ever did on horseback.