'Vintage Port Uncorked in Princess Elizabeth

(from Woodbine report)
A fine wine and a little parsley were some of the ingredients that made for a successful upset in Sunday's $250,000 Princess Elizabeth (Can-II) at Woodbine.

My Vintage Port, co-owned and trained by Ken Parsley, stunned the Ontario gathering, taking the featured 1 1/16-mile test for Canadian-foaled 2-year-old fillies.

It wasn't so much that My Vintage Port won the juvenile filly classic that made this a surprise. The bay filly entered the race fresh from a stakes score in the Muskoka on Sept. 1 and was sent off as the fourth choice at 8-1 in a field reduced to six with the morning scratch of Moon Bay Dancer.

Rather, it was the fact that recent Mazarine Breeders' Cup Stakes (Can-II) winner Dream About, the overwhelming 1-5 choice with Patrick Husbands aboard, struggled home fourth, shattering Breeders' Cup dreams and setting up some wild place prices in the no show-betting event.

Silver Bird and Dream About battled on the front end for most of the race, through fractions of :23.81, :47.33 and 1:12.59 . But turning for home, My Vintage Port and jockey Jono Jones suddenly joined the leaders. In the ensuing stretch battle, it was My Vintage Port who uncorked a late move, pulling away from Silver Bird to win by 3 3/4 lengths.

Meanwhile, Dream About was passed by Oblivious in the last seventy yards for third and wound almost 10 lengths behind the winner. The final time was 1:48.95 over the 'fast' surface.

"I always knew my filly was a nice filly," said Jones. "I had to beat Josie Carroll's horse. At the quarter pole, I knew I had a good shot. When I got to her, I passed her so I knew it was all over then. The race went exactly as how I wanted it to run."

Added Parsley, who owns the April foal with Richard Pettifer, "(Dream About) looked like an exceptionally nice horse but I was cautiously optimistic."

With the winning purse of $150,000, My Vintage Port raised her career earnings to $271,176.

She paid $19.20 to win and $21.00 to place. Silver Bird, the 5-1 second choice, returned $14.00 to place. The exacta was worth $101.30.

(Chart, Equibase)