Location: Woodbine Racetrack
Distance: 1 1/16 miles (8.5 furlongs)
Track: Polytrack, left-handed
Qualification: Three-year-olds and up
Weight: Assigned, allowances
Grade II Stakes Race
Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) announced Woodbine’s entire 2013 Thoroughbred stakes calendar. A total of 107 stakes races, worth over $20.25 million, are scheduled.
The first portion of the stakes calendar, which features 37 added-money races through July 7, including the date of the 154th Queen’s Plate, was announced in March.
Key features in the “second half” of the schedule include traditional late season spotlight events, the Ricoh Woodbine Mile and Pattison Canadian International.
The Grade 1, $1 million Ricoh Woodbine Mile is set for Sunday, September 15 this year. The Mile is once again a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” event (Turf Mile), as is its filly and mare companion on the date, the Grade 2, $300,000 Canadian Stakes (Filly & Mare Turf). Also on the power-packed card is the Grade 1, $300,000 Northern Dancer Stakes and the Grade 3, $150,000 Ontario Derby.
Many racing fans will remember Wise Dan crushing a strong field in the Mile last year en route to a multiple Eclipse Award-winning campaign, including Horse of the Year.
“The Ricoh Woodbine Mile is a premier event in the Thoroughbred racing world,” said Steve Koch, WEG’s Vice-President of Thoroughbred Racing, “Wise Dan obviously reinforces that distinction. We anticipate offering another brilliant field of world-class horses for the Mile, as well as the Northern Dancer, the Canadian and Ontario Derby that day.”
The Grade 1, $1 million Pattison Canadian International and its filly and mare complement, the Grade 1, $500,000 E.P. Taylor Stakes has found a later spot on the calendar. The pair is now set for Sunday, October 27.
“The later date allows every opportunity for runners coming out of major U.S. and European races to take advantage of Woodbine’s turf course,” said Koch. “Those that run well here usually move on to other races besides the Breeders’ Cup later in the year, such as Hong Kong or Japan.”
Three other “Win and You’re In” races are set for Woodbine. The Grade 1, $300,000 Nearctic Stakes returns as a WAYI race (Turf Sprint) and is set for Sunday, October 13, as does the Grade 2 two-year-old turf events, the $200,000 Natalma Stakes (Juvenile Fillies Turf) and $200,000 Summer Stakes, presented by TVG (Juvenile Turf). Both are set for Saturday, September 14.
The third and turf jewel of Canada’s Triple Crown, the $500,000 Breeders’ Stakes, is set for Sunday, August 18 at Woodbine. The Prince of Wales, the middle gem, is scheduled for Tuesday, July 30 at Fort Erie.