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Yesterday, at Fort Erie during Prince Of Wales day, I set out to find out:
Thanks to everyone who participated including Cindy Pierson Dulay who runs Horse-Races.net and About.com: Horse Racing, Jocko Lauzon, Peter Gross (Down The Stretch Newspaper), Kevin Attard (the best dressed guy at The Fort yesterday), Daryl Wells Jr., Jim Thibert (who waved at the end), and all the rest. Cub reporter Perry Lefko was also very helpful in the making of the video.
Gallant Wins The Prince Of Wales
The track was absolutely the most speed favoring one of the year and the rail was golden, yet the pace was very slow in the Prince Of Wales.
The fastest early pace horse, on form, in the race, Mr. Foricos Two U decide to rate. Why? Was that Mike Smith's decision or the outfit's decision? Or was the horse just off his game? As I stated in my post handicapping the race, my biggest concern with this horse was his breeding. Porto Foricos horses are not great routers. They are more inclined to be 6-7 furlong horses. This one has shown that he can go around two turns though, but I haven't seen very many do so, especially at Fort Erie. I had him pegged as the lone speed in the race, and the track came up perfect for him. He at least stayed near the rail most of the race, but he had no chance yesterday trying to stalk.
And what is with Eye Of The Leopard deciding not train at least once at Fort Erie? Horrible move. As Elissa Blowe rightfully points out almost daily when doing the handicapping at Fort Erie, horses dropping in from Woodbine many times don't do so well their first time racing at The Fort. By shipping and running The Leopard, it may very well cost him the Triple Crown This Year. That being said, the track totally played against him yesterday, and if the track was playing fair, he might have won regardless of his connection's blunder.
Stewart Elliot on Milwaukee Appeal did the right thing early by grabbing the lead on the inside going into the first turn, but then blew the race by allowing Gallant not only take over the lead but also let Corey Fraser grab the rail. The filly still did run a very game race. She could be the second best 3 year old filly in North America right now, which still means she could be 16 lengths inferior to Rachel Alexandra.
It was a masterful ride on Gallant by Corey Fraser who out rode the rest of the jockeys in the race.
There was tremendous drama during the extra long wait as the judges tried to figure out who won the race. I was 90% sure, Milwaukee Appeal won it after watching the stretch replay 3 or 4 times, though when I watched the race, I was a little past the wire, and it seemed Gallant was in front at that time.
When Peter Kyte finally announced that Gallant had won, there was probably not a happier person on the planet than Niagara Falls native, jockey Corey Fraser.
Great race no matter how you slice it.
Non Seeded Pick 6 Attracts $11,000 In New Money At Woodbine
Since the Pick 6 only usually only got around $1,000-$3,000 in new money prior to Woodbine's Turbo Charge experiment, I can only conclude that many bettors were duped into thinking that Woodbine was still seeding the pools.
The small field sizes offered, coupled with most people knowing the Turbo Charged Pick 6 was no more, resulted in a pathetic $2.1 million in handle at Woodbine yesterday.