ETOBICOKE, Ont. – The post position draw for the 160th running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate was completed this morning at Woodbine Racetrack in suburban Toronto. The draw for the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America took place in the Trackside Clubhouse with track announcer Robert Geller presiding.
A field of 14 will tackle the mile-and-a-quarter race on the Woodbine Tapeta surface on Saturday. Avie’s Flatter (5-2), the Plate Winterbook favorite, was installed as the morning line favorite. The field will include one filly, Woodbine Oaks winner Desert Ride (8-1). The field will head to the post at 5:36 p.m. as Race 10 as part of a two-day Queen’s Plate racing festival at Woodbine.
Here are some quick hitters from the post draw:
- Trainer Mark Casse sends out two horses in hopes of capturing his third Queen’s Plate, including Skywire (4-1, post No. 10) and Federal Law (8-1, post No. 7). He’ll try to extend his streak of classic victories to three after winning the Preakness (War of Will) and Belmont (Sir Winston). We fell one short of our Racing Kreskin prediction of three Plate horses, as his two fillies didn’t fire in the Oaks.
- Casse has won five of the last six classics in North America, as he swept all three legs of last year’s Canadian Triple Crown with two different horses.
- Roger Attfield, who has a record-equaling eight Queen’s Plate training victories, does not have a horse in the field for the second year in a row.
- Lou Tucci returns as co-owner with Gary Barber (War of Will and Wonder Gadot owner) to run Skywire. Tucci won the 2013 Plate with longshot Midnight Aria.
- Hall of Famer Javier Castellano will fly in to ride the favorite for trainer Josie Carroll. She will be seeking her third Plate training victory as the only female trainer to win the first leg of the Canadian Triple Crown.
- Trainer Rachel Halden will try to join Carroll with a win by Plate Trial winner Pay for Peace (15-1, post No. 4), who will have Rafael Hernandez aboard.
- Mike De Paulo, a Prince of Wales winning trainer at Fort Erie, sends out two horses in Moon Swings (30-1, post No. 2) and Rising Star (30-1, post No. 13), seeking his first Plate.
- California shipper One Bad Boy (7-2, post No. 5) has a win over Golden Gate Fields’ Tapeta for trainer Richard Baltas. Flavien Prat will ride the son of Twirling Candy.
- He’s a Macho Man (15-1, post No. 8) connections from Di Scola Boys Stable made sure the crowd understood that their horse “will be on the lead” on Saturday afternoon.
The News will be onsite in suburban Toronto on Saturday to report on the Plate and the undercard.
Also Wednesday, Woodbine CEO Jim Lawson spoke before the draw and outlined plans for the expansion within the 30-acre footprint that will include a hotel, casino and concert venue, all which are projected to bring 14 million visitors to the destination. Adding a train stop at Woodbine from downtown Toronto to Pearson airport will enhance traffic at the site. Five large cranes were present upon my arrival on the facility as construction is already underway.
The post position draw with trainer, jockey and morning line odds is included below:
|1||Desert Ride (f)||N. Howard||S. Bahen||8-1|
|2||Moon Swings||M. De Paulo||J. Campbell||30-1|
|3||Krachenwagen||A. Buntain||J. Alderson||50-1|
|4||Pay for Peace||R. Halden||R. Hernandez||15-1|
|5||One Bad Boy||C. Brown||F. Prat||7-2|
|6||Lucas n' Lori||K. Attard||K. Kimura||50-1|
|7||Federal Law||M. Casse||J. Spencer||8-1|
|8||He's a Macho Man||J. Carroll||P. Husbands||15-1|
|9||Suitedconnected||R.E. Barnett||G. Boulanger||50-1|
|10||Skywire||M. Casse||E. da Silva||4-1|
|11||Tone Broke||S. Asmussen||L. Contreras||6-1|
|12||Jammin Still||K. Attard||A. Garcia||30-1|
|13||Rising Star||M. De Paulo||J. Stein||30-1|
|14||Avie's Flatter||J. Carroll||J.J. Castellano||5-2|
Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.