The one-mile Natalma is one of four challenge races guaranteeing the winner a slot in the Cup's Juvenile Fillies Turf.
Last year, Shakespeare won the Woodbine Mile (Can-I) over subsequent Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner Kip Deville. Shakespeare, a seven-time winner in eight starts, ended his racing career with earnings of $1,293,780.
Lady Shakespeare rallied from last to win her career debut at Woodbine for trainer Roger Attfield and owner/breeder Charles E. Fipke Aug. 15. The daughter of Theatrical, the winner of the 1987 Breeders’ Cup Turf (gr. IT), out of Lady Shirl, won the six-furlong maiden turf race by three-quarters of a length. Lady Shakespeare rallied six-wide to get the job done for jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson, who has the mount once again.
The Natalma includes five fillies with stakes experience, including the first three finishers in the Ice Water Stakes on the Woodbine lawn Aug. 24.
Koonunga Hill is coming off a nose win over Panther Strike in the seven-furlong Ice Water in her turf debut. It was the second win from five starts for the Steve Owens-trained bay. The daughter of Wonneberg also won a five-furlong maiden race over Woodbine’s Polytrack June 28.
Panther Strike, a daughter of proven turf sire Black Minnaloushe, is still seeking her first win for owner Edward A. Seltzer. Her form improved dramatically in the Ice Water, following a fifth-place finish over Polytrack in an off-the-turf race at Woodbine July 26.
Freyga, a Touch Gold filly owned by Eaton Hall Farm and conditioned by Michael Doyle, also seeks her first win after finishing third in the Ice Water, 2 1/2 lengths behind the first two.
After the Applause and C Karma will try the turf for the first time after running second and third, respectively, in the Ontario Debutante over Woodbine's Polytrack Aug. 16. After the Applause, a daughter of Lost Solder trained by Nicholas Gonzalez, came up a head short in the six-furlogn Debutante after breaking her maiden at first asking at Calder Race Course by a head a month earlier. C Karma (Exchange Rate ), 1 1/4 lengths back in the Debutante for trainer Gregory de Gannes, won a maiden race by two lengths in her third start Aug. 2.
Vegas Wedding debuted with a maiden win for Lisa Lewis at 5 1/2 furlongs in an off-the-turf affair at sloppy Saratoga Aug. 11. North Shore Racing owns the Chapel Royal filly.
Laragh (Tapit ) and Poppin (City Zip ) were last-out maiden winners at Woodbine, with Poppin popping at six furlongs on the turf for trainer Steve Asmussen in her third start.
The Woodbine program also includes the $150,000 Swynford Stakes for 2-year-olds at seven furlongs on Polytrack. Six are entered in the Swynford, which goes as the fourth race.
$150,000 Natalma Stakes (Can-III, Race 6, 3:35 p.m.), 2-Year-Old Fillies, 1 Mile (Turf)
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Vegas Wedding (KY), 114, Michael J. Luzzi
2. Laragh (KY), 114, Patrick Husbands
3. Lady Shakespeare (KY), 114, Emma-Jayne Wilson
4. Milwaukee Appeal (ON), 116, Na Somsanith
5. C Karma (FL), 114, Jono C. Jones
6. Triple Flip (KY), 114, Eurico Rosa Da Silva
7. Panther Strike (ON), 114, Tyler Pizarro
8. Freyga (ON), 114, Justin Stein
9. Poppin (ON), 114, James McAleney
10. Koonunga Hill (ON), 116, Constant Montpellier
11. After the Applause (KY), 114, Chantal Sutherland