Shillelagh Slew, last year's champion 3-year-old male in Canada, is set to square off against some salty rivals in the 1 1/16-mile event for older horses, including True Metropolitan, Canada's top older horse in 2006, as well as Canada's 2005 top 3-year-old Palladio and three-time Sovereign winner Judiths Wild Rush.
U.S. invader Jade's Revenge, a five-time winner from 18 starts who has only missed the board on three occasions, will break from post four, while 12-time winner Just Rushing, fresh off a triumph in the Vigil Stakes (Can-III) at the Toronto oval, and last year's Breeders' Stakes champion, Royal Challenger, round out the field.
"He's certainly stepping up as a four-year-old," said trainer Brian Lynch, of Royal Challenger, whose last effort was a second-place finish to Shillelagh Slew in the Ontario Derby (Can-III) in October. "Patrick (jockey Husbands) had a few options in the race, so hopefully that's a good indication."
A lifetime winner of four races from seven starts, the son of Touch Gold wintered between Frank Stronach's Adena Springs North and Adena Springs South locales.
"All systems go," said Lynch. "We have him fit. It's just a question of him stepping up to this test."
Shillelagh Slew, a son of Chief Seattle, finished fourth in the Vigil in the dark bay's 4-year-old debut.
True Metropolitan, who recently captured the George Royal on May 5 at Hastings Park in Vancouver, gets his third start at the Toronto oval. Last year, the son of Proud and True took the Woodbine Slots Cup (Can-III).
Palladio, trained by Roger Attfield, has had three starts in 2007. Most recently, the 5-year-old bay finished sixth, just 1 3/4 lengths back of Jade's Revenge, in the Ben Ali at Keeneland.
$150,000 Eclipse Stakes (Can-III, Race 6, 3:30 p.m.), 4 & Up, 1 1/16 Miles
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Shillelagh Slew (PQ), Dino Luciani, 121, 3/1
2. Just Rushing (ON), Emma-Jayne Wilson, 117, 9/2
3. True Metropolitan (FL), Quincy Welch, 121, 4/1
4. Jade's Revenge (KY), Kent J. Desormeaux, 121, 5/2
5. Royal Challenger (ON), Patrick Husbands, 119, 8/1
6. Palladio (FL), Richard Anthony Dos Ramos, 115, 8/1
7. Judiths Wild Rush (KY), Emile Ramsammy, 115, 10/1
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