The speedy 6-year-old Ontario-bred son of Speightstown was a bit short in his most recent start, the Vigil Stakes (Can-III) at seven furlongs on the Polytrack June 2. Essence Hit Man was overtaken in deep stretch by Laugh Track after pulling his way on the front end through a :45.02 opening half-mile.
Essence Hit Man, with regular rider Jesse Campbell aboard, will shorten up a bit to 6 1/2 furlongs in the Bold Venture. The chestnut gelding won last year's Bold Venture in front-running style by a head in game fashion over Eternal Rule. He is 7-5 on the morning line.
This year's Bold Venture is scheduled as race 3 with a 7:47 p.m. EDT scheduled post time on the Toronto area track's night card.
Larry Cappuccitti takes over training of Essence Hit Man from Sylvain Pion, who had replaced Audre Cappuccitti after the former co-owner and breeder died late last year. Essence Hit Man, owned by A & G Racing, has 11 wins and nine placings from 26 lifetime starts while earning more than $1.2 million.
Laugh Track was nominated to the Bold Venture but not entered.
Bear Tough Tiger, second to Essence Hit Man by four lengths in the season-opening Jacques Cartier Stakes, is 5-2 on the morning line. The grade III winner, trained by Reade Baker for Bear Stables, looks to rebound from an eighth-place showing in the Connaught Cup (Can-IIIT) on turf May 26. The 5-year-old Roar the Tiger gelding is an eight-time winner from 14 starts.
Centennial Farm's Paso Doble (8-1) won the restricted New Providence Stakes May 20 for trainer Mark Casse. The 7-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Bold n' Flashy is coming off a close second to Fatal Bullet in a six-furlong allowance heat on turf June 15.
Consolidator Joe has been in solid form for a long time, winning six of 12 starts over the past two years. The 5-year-old Consolidator gelding makes his stakes debut at 4-1 on the early line for trainer Ross Armata and On the Run Stable.
Grade II winner Court of the Realm (9-2) starts for the first time since finishing fourth, 1 3/4 lengths behind the victorious Bear Tough Tiger, in the Nov. 25 Kennedy Road (Can-III). The 6-year-old son of Powerscourt upset the 2011 King Edward (Can-IIT) over the Woodbine turf.
$150,000 Bold Venture Stakes (Can-III, Race 3, 7:47 p.m.), 3 & Up, 6 1/2 Furlongs (All Weather)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, ML Odds
1. Dimension (GB), D Moran, 117, C Murphy, 12/1
2. Bear Tough Tiger (FL), E Wilson, 119, R Baker, 5/2
3. Essence Hit Man (ON), J M Campbell, 124, L Cappuccitti, 7/5
4. Court of the Realm (KY), J Stein, 117, P Berringer, 9/2
5. Consolidator Joe (ON), L Contreras, 117, R Armata, 4/1
6. Paso Doble (KY), E R Da Silva, 119, M E Casse, 8/1