TORONTO, September 10, 2020 – Art of Almost and Elizabeth Way, both trained by Roger Attfield, will take on eight rivals, including multiple Grade 1 champion Cambier Parc, in Saturday’s $250,000 Canadian Stakes presented by the Japan Racing Association (Grade 2), one of four added-money features that complement the 161st running of The Queen’s Plate.
A dual hall of fame inductee, Attfield will look for his fourth Canadian crown, having won the 1984 edition with Dundrum Dancer, the 1994 running with Alywow, and the 2010 renewal with Miss Keller.
He’ll have a pair of chances to add to his Canadian haul in the 1 1/8-mile stakes race for fillies & mares, three-year-olds and up, contested over the E.P. Taylor Turf Course.
A four-year-old daughter of Dansili (GB), Art of Almost has crafted a 3-3-4 mark from 15 starts for the ownership group of Frederick Seitz, Jon Kelly, Danny Ward, and Dr. Ted Folkerth.
The multiple graded stakes placed miss finished third in a pair of stakes races in 2019, the Dance Smartly (G2), and Pucker Up (G3).
Art of Almost heads into the Canadian off back-to-back fourth-place stakes outings, including her most recent engagement, the Dance Smartly on August 15.
What she lacks in size, offered Attfield, is made up for in effort.
“She’s the same little tiny herself. She always tries. She’s training into the race very well, actually.”
Godolphin-bred Elizabeth Way, a four-year-old daughter of Frankel, is enjoying a fruitful 2020 campaign, going 3-0-2 from six starts.
The chestnut, owned by John McCormack, took all the spoils in The Very One (G3) on February 29 at Gulfstream – her second start of the season – and won the Nassau Stakes (G2) on June 27 at Woodbine.
She arrives at the Canadian off a third in the Dance Smartly.
“It wasn’t her race at all,” said Attfield, of the most recent performance. “She didn’t really go into it as nicely as she had in all her other races. She didn’t really run her race. She was running off the bridle with her head up. But at least she was third, anyway. She’s coming into this one much better than she was the last one, for sure.”
Three-time stakes winner Amalfi Coast, who closed out her three-year-old season with a victory in the Bessarabian Stakes (G2), will look to notch her first win in 2020. The daughter of Tapizar comes into the Canadian off a third-place effort in the Seaway (G3) on August 16.
The Terra Racing homebred, trained by Kevin Attard (who won the past two editions with Starship Jubilee), is 4-2-2 from 11 lifetime starts.
Hoolie Racing Stable’s multiple graded stakes placed Another Time has four wins, a second and three thirds from 12 starts.
Trained by Barbara Minshall, the four-year-old daughter of Munnings was second in this year’s Nassau (G2), third in the Trillium (G3) and most recently, fourth in the Seaway (G3).
Bold Script, a four-year-old daughter of Speightstown, is 3-6-4 from 16 outings for owner and breeder Chiefswood Stables.
The Ontario-bred grey, trained by Stuart Simon, has contested four graded events, including a pair of third-place efforts in the 2018 Natalma (G1) and 2019 Selene (G3). She was the runner-up in the 2019 Bison City.
Cambier Parc, who last raced nearly a year ago, has won three of her past four starts – including back-to-back Grade 1 triumphs – for OXO Equine and trainer Chad Brown.
The four-year-old daughter of Medaglia d’Oro took the Del Mar Oaks last August and followed it up with a victory in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup in October.
“I appreciate Larry Best giving me the opportunity with this horse,” Brown said after the Queen Elizabeth win. “She’s a really well-bred, great-looking horse that anyone would love to have. I’m lucky to have her.”
Bred in Kentucky by Bonne Chance Farm, she is out of 2007 Canadian Horse of the Year and Triple Tiara winner Sealy Hill, who has also produced Canadian champion sprinter and Grade 2 winner Hillaby and Grade 3 winners Belle Hill and Gale Force.
Ivan Dalos’ homebred Court Return goes for the natural hat trick after a romp on July 2 at Woodbine, followed by an Eternal Search Stakes triumph on August 22.
Trained by Josie Carroll, the four-year-old daughter of Court Vision was fourth in last year’s Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine.
Sam-Son Farm homebred Rideforthecause will be making her first stakes appearance since contesting the Tropical Park Oaks last December at Gulfstream.
The four-year-old daughter of Candy Ride is 3-0-1 from nine career starts. She arrives at the Canadian off a rallying score on August 1 at Woodbine, a 1 ½-length win at 1 1/16 miles over the Toronto oval’s Inner Turf.
Bred and owned by Craig Singer, Runway Dreamer rallied from second-last at the quarter-mile mark to win an 11-horse 1 1/16-mile Inner Turf race on August 22.
Trained by Josie Carroll, the three-year-old daughter of Candy Ride has contested six of her career races at Woodbine, with the other two coming at Gulfstream.
This will be her third stakes appearance.
Classic Stamp (2004, 2005) and reigning Canadian Horse of the Year Starship Jubilee (2018, 2019) are the only two-time winners of the Canadian. Sam-Son Farm leads all owners with four wins, and Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame inductee Robin Platts tops all riders with five victories.
The Canadian Stakes, which is the third leg of Woodbine’s Ladies of the Lawn bonus series, precedes the $1 million Queen’s Plate, as the ninth of 13 races. The $250,000 Bison City Stakes, second jewel in the Canadian Triple Tiara series, goes as race eight. The $100,000 King Corrie (race two) and $100,00 Ruling Angel (race 12) overnight stakes are also on tap Saturday. First race post time is 12:30 p.m.
$250,000 Canadian Stakes (Grade 2)
Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer – Morning Line
1 – Theodora B. – Kazushi Kimura – Michael Dickinson – 5-1
2 – Court Return – Luis Contreras – Josie Carroll – 20-1
3 – Elizabeth Way – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Roger Attfield – 4-1
4 – Rideforthecause – Davy Moran – Gail Cox – 20-1
5 – Another Time – Steven Bahen – Barbara Minshall – 12-1
6 – Amalfi Coast – Justin Stein – Kevin Attard – 6-1
7 – Runway Dreamer – Slade Callaghan – Josie Carroll – 20-1
8 – Bold Script – Patrick Husbands – Stuart Simon – 20-1
9 – Art of Almost – Daisuke Fukumoto – Roger Attfield – 15-1
10 – Cambier Parc – Rafael Hernandez – Chad Brown – 6-5
Photo Credit: Michael Burns