Melmich (outside) gets a nose in front of Are You Kidding Me in the 2017 Seagram Cup at Woodbine

Melmich (outside) gets a nose in front of Are You Kidding Me in the 2017 Seagram Cup at Woodbine

Michael Burns

Are You Kidding Me to Take on Talented Eclipse Field

The 8-year-old tries race for fifth straight year.

Are You Kidding Me will again take on a talented field of seven older horses in the $175,000 Eclipse Stakes (G2) May 26 as part of the Greenwood Stakes celebration at Woodbine.

The field for the 1 1/16-mile race on the all-weather track includes three millionaires: 2016 Queen's Plate Stakes winner Sir Dudley Digges, two-time Eclipse Stakes winner Are You Kidding Me, and multiple graded stakes winner Melmich.

Are You Kidding Me, trained by Hall of Famer Roger Attfield, won back-to-back editions of the Eclipse Stakes in 2015 and 2016 and will try the race for a fifth straight year. The 8-year-old bay, who boasts 11 wins from 37 career starts and $1,110,612 in earnings, nearly notched a third straight Eclipse score when he missed by a narrow neck in the 2017 edition won by Dragon Bay.

The son of Run Away and Hide captured his season debut May 5, finishing two lengths ahead of Eclipse rival Melmich in a Woodbine allowance race. Rafael Hernandez has the call.

Sir Dudley Digges, trained by Michael Maker for owners Ken and Sarah Ramsey, scored an impressive 15-1 upset in the Queen's Plate under a perfect ride from Julien Leparoux in 2016.

The well-traveled 5-year-old has since added wins at Churchill Downs and Kentucky Downs as well as a last-out score at the Garrison in the Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup. Bred in Ontario by Bernard and Karen McCormack, Sir Dudley Digges will be making his first start at Woodbine since finishing second in the 2016 Breeders' Stakes, the third leg of the Canadian Triple Crown, and his first start on a synthetic track since his Queen's Plate score. Luis Contreras will pilot Sir Dudley Digges from post 7.

Melmich, trained by Kevin Attard for owners Stephen Chesney and Cory S. Hoffman, won his first five starts of 2017, including the Dominion Day (G3), Seagram Cup (G3), and Durham Cup (G3) stakes. He completed the lucrative season with runner-up efforts in the Autumn (G2) and Valedictory (G3) stakes. Eurico Rosa da Silva will ride.

Gigantic Breeze, Hollywood Critic, Tiz a Slam, and Tizzarunner complete the field.