The Fillies & Mares line up for a test on the turf in the 64th running of the E.P. Taylor (G1T)

October 16, 2020

Woodbine’s Star-Stacked Sunday

TORONTO, Ont. – Seven fillies and mares will vie for top honours in the $600,000 E.P. Taylor Stakes (G1T) Sunday at Woodbine. The 1 ¼-mile turf test for fillies & mares, three-year-olds and upward, is complemented by a trio of stakes events, including the Northern Dancer (formerly the Niagara Handicap and renamed the Northern Dancer in 2006), a 1 ½-mile grass engagement for three-year-olds and upward.

Sunday’s card will also see nine starters contest the $250,000 Nearctic (G2T), while eight hopefuls face off in the $100,000 Display Stakes.

Trainer Gail Cox has a trio of talented turfers taking up the Sam-Son Farm charge, namely, Rideforthecause in the E.P. Taylor, as well as Count Again and Say the Word in the Northern Dancer.

A four-year-old daughter of Candy Ride (ARG), Rideforthecause rolls into the E.P. Taylor off two straight scores, both of them contested at Woodbine.

After an allowance victory at 1 1/16 miles on the Toronto oval Inner Turf on August 1, the bay was back in the winner’s circle on September 12, winning the Canadian Stakes presented by the Japan Racing Association (G2) at the distance of about 1 1/8 miles on the E.P. Taylor Turf Course.

Sent off at 22-1, the second longest shot on the board, Rideforthecause, with jockey David Moran aboard, took the lead in mid-stretch and went on to a four-length score over mutual favorite Cambier Parc.

“I always thought she was a very nice filly,” praised Cox. “I knew that she needed a distance of ground, and she never got to do that. A mile-and-a-sixteenth on our outer turf course isn’t that far. He [Moran] had never ridden her before and he said that she just did it as easy as could be. He was quite impressed.”

“I thought she was being overlooked [in the Canadian]. That’s all. I train her so I have a little different outlook. I thought she was being overlooked because it was such a perfect distance for her.”

Now, the Ontario-bred will go after her fifth win in what will be the 11th start of her career.

Cox, who campaigned Sam-Son’s El Tormenta to a 44-1 shocker in last year’s Ricoh Woodbine Mile (G1T), is hoping to add another graded crown to her list of accomplishments on Sunday.

“She has been doing really well this year. It seems like she has become a little more settled with age. She was, as a young horse, a bit of a handful. She was nervous, but she’s become way more settled. She’s doing great. I wouldn’t trade places with anyone. She’s training well and she looks good. I’m very happy with her.”

Court Return, a four-year-old daughter of Court Vision, goes after her second (Eternal Search Stakes) added-money title and first graded triumph. Bred and owned by Ivan Dalos, the Ontario-bred is 3-2-1 from 11 career starts.

Etoile, from the stable of Chad Brown, will look to build off a second-place effort in the Dance Smartly Stakes (G2T) on August 15 at Woodbine. The four-year-old French-bred daughter of Siyouni has three wins and a pair of seconds from nine lifetime starts for the ownership group of Peter Brant, Mrs. M.V. Magnier, and Mrs. Paul Shanahan.

Multiple graded stakes winner, four-year-old Elizabeth Way, goes for her third graded title. Trained by Roger Attfield, the daughter of Frankel won The Very One Stakes (G3T) and Nassau Stakes (G2T) this year. Owned by John McCormack, the chestnut is 3-2-2 from 12 career starts.

Pretty Point, trained by Patrick Gallagher, goes after her first stakes crown. The four-year-old daughter of Point of Entry launched her career with three starts at Woodbine before heading to California. She arrives at the Northern Dancer off a fifth in the Rodeo Stakes Drive (G1T) on September 26.

Secret Message, a five-year-old daughter of Hat Trick (JPN), seeks her seventh win in what will be the 19th start of the dark bay’s career. Trained by Graham Motion, the well-travelled dark bay mare won the 2019 running of the Nassau (G2T).

Bred and owned by Augustin Stable, Theodora B. aims for her third straight stakes score after taking the Dance Smartly (G2T) on August 15 at Woodbine, and the TVG Stakes on September 15 at Kentucky Downs. The daughter of Ghostzapper has a record of 6-5-3 from 18 lifetime starts.

The E.P. Taylor Stakes is the final event in Woodbine’s Ladies of the Lawn Series. At the conclusion of the series, the connections of the top three point-earners will receive $75,000 in bonuses ($50,000 for first, $15,000 for second, $10,000 for third). Elizabeth Way (18 points), Rideforthecause (10 points) and Theodora B. (10 points) are the top three point-earners to date. The inaugural winner of the 2019 Ladies of the Lawn Series was Starship Jubilee, Canada’s reigning Horse of the Year.

Flying Trapeze won the inaugural running of the E.P. Taylor Stakes (known as the Nettie Handicap until 1981) in 1956. Trainers Lou Cavalaris Jr., Frank Merrill Jr., and Maurice Zilber have won three editions of the race. Kitty Girl (1957, 1958) is the only two-time winner.

$600,000 E.P. Taylor Stakes (Grade 1) – Race 7

Post – Horse – Jockey – Trainer

1 – Rideforthecause – David Moran – Gail Cox

2 – Pretty Point – Luis Contreras – Patrick Gallagher

3 – Etoile – Rafael Hernandez – Chad Brown

4 – Theodora B. – Justin Stein – Michael Dickinson

5 – Court Return – Daisuke Fukumoto – Josie Carroll

6 – Secret Message – Kazushi Kimura – Graham Motion

7 – Elizabeth Way – Emma-Jayne Wilson – Roger Attfield

Woodbine Entries for Sunday, October 18

Press Release Edited

Photo: E.P. Taylor Stakes contender Rideforthecause breezing at Woodbine under jockey David Moran. (Michael Burns Photo)

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