Etibicoke, Ont. -- The post position draw for the 157th Queen's Plate was completed this morning at the trackside terrace in suburban Toronto this morning. Four-time Plate winning jockey Sandy Hawley served as the draw master for the event, with track announcer Robert Geller presiding.
The Queen's Plate, the first leg of the Canadian Triple Crown will be run at Woodbine Racetrack on Sunday afternoon in Race 10 on the track's biggest day. Post time for the Plate is 5:36 p.m.
Amis Gizmo was listed as the morning line favorite at odds of 3-1. The Giant Gizmo colt drew post No. 10 for trainer Josie Carroll, who will also saddle the lone filly in the race, Gamble's Ghost (6-1). Jockey Luis Contreras ended speculation of which of the two horses he would ride in the Plate by selecting the favorite this morning prior to the draw. Contreras had also rode Gamble's Ghost to a second-place finish in the Woodbine Oaks.
Patrick Husbands, a long-time top jock at Woodbine, picked up the mount on the filly, who will look to equal recent success incurred by fillies Inglorious (2011) and Lexie Lou (2014) in winning the Plate. Gamble's Ghost drew the far outside post No. 13 for Sunday's Plate.
Esposito (8-1), named after Hall of Fame hockey player Phil Esposito, drew post No. 11 trainer Tom Proctor and Alan Garcia, one of several American-based connections trying to bring the Plate back to the States. Alan Garcia will ride the son of Ghostzapper.
West Point Thoroughbreds' star Ontario-bred Scholar Athlete (12-1) is trained by Graham Motion and will be ridden by New York circuit rider Jose Ortiz on Saturday. The son of Einstein drew an outside post (No. 12) for the Saratoga-based outfit.
Trainer Roger Attfield will be looking for a record ninth Queen's Plate, his first coming in 1976 with Shakhimat (5-1), who was the third choice on the morning line. Shakhimat was runner-up to Amis Gizmo as a beaten favorite in the Plate Trial earlier in the month.
Here's a look at the #QP16 field:
|3||All On Red||Attard||Rosa da Silva||12-1|
|4||Leavem in Malibu||Casse||Boulanger||7-2|
|5||Sir Dudley Digges||Maker||Leparoux||15-1|
|7||My Name Is Jim||Baker||Campbell||30-1|
|8||Rocket Plan||LeBlanc Jr.||Gierkink||30-1|
|13||Gamble's Ghost (f)||Carroll||Husbands||6-1|
Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.