Hazelbrook Chasing Second Straight G3 Ontario Fashion Victory

October 11, 2023

Hazelbrook captures last year’s edition of the Ontario Fashion (Michael Burns)

By Chris Lomon – Woodbine Communications

TORONTO— Hazelbrook, Canada’s 2022 champion female sprinter, will defend her title in Saturday’s $150,000 Ontario Fashion (G3) Presented by Tanqueray at Woodbine. 

A six-furlong main track event for fillies and mares, 3-year-olds and upward, the Ontario Fashion has attracted 11 starters.  

Trained by Lorne Richards, Hazelbrook, 6-2-2 from 13 starts, won last year’s race by three-quarters of a length as the 2-5 choice. 

Although winless from three starts (sixth, third and sixth) in her 5-year-old campaign, the daughter of Bayern-Zaphia, who has had to contend with digestive complications throughout her racing career, is doing well ahead of the Ontario Fashion. 

“With all the issues she’s had to deal with, she’s always gone out there and given a very honest effort,” said Richards. “There is no reason she can’t run well this weekend.” 

Saturday’s race will likely be the final appearance for Hazelbrook, who is headed for the upcoming Keeneland Sale on November 7. 

Bred in Kentucky by Mike Bilbrey, she is Hip No. 20, listed as a racing or broodmare prospect.  

“We have her in the sale there, so this is probably her last race,” said Richards. “It’s been a tough journey for her. She’s been a nice horse and none of those issues were her fault. You feel bad she’s had to go through all that. I like her.”   

Hazelbrook wins last year’s Ontario Fashion ^

Hazelbrook posted a 4-2-0 mark from six starts en route to her Sovereign recognition last year. Her 2022 triumphs also included stakes scores in the Hendrie (G3), at 26-1, and the Sweet Briar Too.  

Owned by True North Stable, she debuted with a third-place effort in a six-furlong main track race at Woodbine on November 7, 2020, in her only start of the year. 

Hazelbrook returned to racing the following September and proceeded to rhyme off two straight wins.  

Richards, whose top horses have included Financingavailable, a multiple stakes winner, who took the 2007 Ontario Fashion and is a three-time Sovereign Award recipient, graded stakes-placed Stormy Rush, stakes winner Dancingall Theway, and graded stakes winner Sheila’s Prospect, is hoping Hazelbrook can come up with a big effort on Saturday. 

“I liked her from the very start. The only thing is that she’s very quirky. She has had those issues with her digestive system for a while, so that’s something we’ve had to monitor closely. The clinic in Guelph told me it’s kind of like colitis. It’s something where you have to take it day-by-day, but there’s no denying she has plenty of talent. She can be high-strung, so we do our best. But I’m not going to complain. She shows up every time.”  

Other starters include multiple graded stakes winner Our Flash Drive, graded stakes winners Ready to Venture (GB), and Loyalty, and stakes winner Spun Glass

Field for the Ontario Fashion (Race 10)

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer  

1 – Souper Munnings – Ryan Munger – Ian Wilkes 

2 – Ready to Venture (GB) – Rafael Hernandez – Michael Stidham 

3 – Hazelbrook – Jason Hoyte – Lorne Richards 

4 – Spun Glass – Luis Contreras – Michael Trombetta 

5 – Hard Edge – Eswan Flores – Stuart Simon 

6 – Loyalty – Kazushi Kimura – Josie Carroll 

7 – Our Flash Drive – Patrick Husbands – Mark Casse 

8 – Vantarsi – Justin Stein – Kevin Attard 

9 – Time for an Angel (S) – Declan Carroll – W. John Bourke 

10 – Awesome Treat – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Steve Attard 

11 – Artie’s Princess – Sahin Civaci – Saffie Joseph, Jr. 

@jonathanstettin Thank you. This is a truly beautiful tribute to a racing legend. Good to hear the true story of what happened that day.

MargaretR (@RurakMarge) View testimonials