Meko Makee and jockey Omar Moreno winning Race 1 on August 19, 2023 at Woodbine (Michael Burns Photo)
Chris Lomon, Woodbine Communications / @WoodbineComms
TORONTO, On. – Fresh off a resounding maiden-breaking score, Meko Makee, a bay son of Hyper-Miss Curly Q, steps up to the stakes ranks in Sunday’s $100,000 Bull Page at Woodbine.
A seven-furlong E.P. Taylor Turf test for Ontario-sired 2-year-olds, the Bull Page is part of a 10-race card that also includes the running of the filly companion Victorian Queen.
Trained by Bill Tharrenos for owners Tara Horse Farm Inc. (also the breeder), and Natural Eight Stable, Meko Makee heads into the Bull Page in winning form courtesy of a six-length romp in a 5 ½-furlong Tapeta race on August 19.
Under Omar Moreno, who will be in the irons again on Sunday, the gelding, sent on his way as the 4-5 choice, broke sharply and controlled the proceedings from the outset. Three lengths clear at the half, Meko Makee was five on top at the stretch call before gliding to the wire under a hand ride.
Tharrenos, who has 333 career wins, four of them stakes, was impressed by the effort from start to finish.
“Very happy with that performance. He got away well and just went on from there. He was focused throughout the race and came home strong. We were happy to get the win, but even happier with the way he did it.”
Meko Makee debuted on July 29, in a five-furlong Tapeta race, a sprint that started far less smoothly than his second start.
After tossing his head at the start, Meko Makee regrouped, rallied three-wide around rivals at the three-eighths marker and came five-wide in the stretch to finish third behind dead-heat winners Chasing Bourbon and Vandoo.
Tharrenos was pleased with the result despite the early miscue.
“He missed the break, but he recovered nicely and went on to run a very nice race. We were expecting him to run well and he did. He’s done nothing wrong in those two starts. Now, he has to step up, but based on what he’s done, he deserves a shot.”
Meko Makee had a trio of five-furlong breezes on the turf training track ahead of the Bull Page, including :59.20 on September 17.
“He’s worked really well on the grass and he’s coming into the race in great shape,” said Tharrenos. “There are going to be some nice horses in this race, but we have a good one too. He’s just a nice all-round horse. He loves to sleep, but I like that. He works hard, then he knows how to rest up and be ready.”
Barry Sterling is the groom.
Trainer Ralph Biamonte has won four editions of the Bull Page, including three consecutive victories from 2011-13.
Six starters, including Mark Casse trainee Olivia Rose, who broke her maiden last time out, a 13 ¾-length romp at 6 ½ furlongs on the Tapeta (the race was originally scheduled for the turf) on August 26, will contest the Victorian Queen. Kevin Attard sends out the duo of Vandoo and War Painter. Never Silent, from the barn of Catherine Day Phillips, arrives at the $100,000 Victorian Queen off a third in the Catch A Glimpse on August 20.
First race post time on Sunday is set for 1:15 p.m. Fans can wager on all the action via HPIbet.com, bet365, and the Dark Horse Bets app.
Field for the $100,000 Bull Page (Race 7)
Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer
1 – Meko Makee – Omar Moreno – Bill Tharrenos
2 – Bearing Down – Luis Contreras – Philip Hall
3 – Zippy Gizmo – Kazushi Kimura – Kevin Attard
4 – Yacht Boy – Rico Walcott – Norm McKnight
5 – Summer Commander – Rafael Hernandez – Stuart Simon
6 – Brave Dancer – Ryan Munger – Steve Attard
Field for the $100,000 Victorian Queen (Race 9)
Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer
1 – Olivia Rose – Kazushi Kimura – Mark Casse
2 – Never Silent – Rafael Hernandez – Catherine Day Phillips
3 – Vandoo – Patrick Husbands – Kevin Attard
4 – Fourfiftyfour – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Barbara Minshall
5 – War Painter – Patrick Husbands – Kevin Attard
6 – Hurricane Clair (S) – Sahin Civaci – Martin Drexler