Bell Woodbine Mile Attracts Baker's Dozen

Bell Woodbine Mile Attracts Baker's Dozen
Photo: Coglianese Photos
Remarkable News wins the Fourstardave Stakes at Saratoga Aug. 6.
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(from Woodbine report)
Holly Rincon's Venezuelan homebred Remarkable News is the 5-2 morning line favorite Sunday against 12 rivals in one of the most competitive fields in the 10-year history of the $1 million Bell Woodbine Mile (Can-I) over the E.P. Taylor Turf Course.

The 13-horse field, drawn Thursday, includes runners bred in Canada, France, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, United States and Venezuela, all seeking the $600,000 first place prize.

Remarkable News comes into the Woodbine Mile – previously known as the Atto Mile -- fresh from a scintillating front-running score in the 1 1/16-mile Fourstardave Handicap (gr. IIT) Aug. 6 at Saratoga. That was the same race Eclipse Award-winning Leroidesanimaux captured last year before shipping to Woodbine for a record-breaking 7 3/4-length triumph in the Mile.

Trained by Angel Penna, Jr. and ridden by Javier Castellano, Remarkable News, who drew post 7 and will carry 121 pounds, seeks his first grade I victory. The 4-year-old Chayim colt has won six of his nine career starts, with each victory coming at a different racetrack. He visited Woodbine in May and escaped with a nose decision over Le Cinquieme Essai in the Connaught Cup (Can-III) .

"It was a testing race, but obviously he came back with an 'A', said Penna, Jr., speaking of Remarkable News' effort in the Fourstardave. "That's why we are having the audacity of thinking about the $1 million at Woodbine. Obviously, we got away with a very easy first half, but he finished pretty strong too, so overall it was a very nice race. He's a warrior. He gives it his all every time he runs."

Hall of Fame trainer Robert Frankel, a two-time winner of the Mile (with Riviera in 2000 and Leroidesanimaux in 2005) will saddle two hopefuls on Sunday in Three Valleys and Diamond Green.

Juddmonte Farms' Three Valleys (7-2), with Ramon Dominguez up, has raced only once this year, but it was a winning effort in the Oceanport (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park on Aug. 6, a neck decision over Hotstufanthensome. The lightly-raced 5-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Diesis has won three of his five North American outings over the last two years, but has started only 12 times in a career which began in England, where he was named champion 2-year-old in 2003.

"Everything's fine," said Frankel. "I don't think he (Three Valleys) needs a really fast pace (to close). He's pretty versatile. Hopefully, he can throw one of his better races and get a chance to win."

French-bred Diamond Green (15-1), co-owned by Stonerside Stable, Robert Trussell and Alain Falourd, finished third to Remarkable News in the Fourstardave and was also third to Sky Conqueror when he contested the King Edward Breeders' Cup (Can-II) at Woodbine on July 3. Jose Santos will ride the three-time group I runner-up for the first time.

Mrs. Susan Magnier and Bob Ingham's Ad Valorem (4-1), the 124-pound high weight, is twice a group I winner in England. The 4-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Danzig won the Queen Anne Stakes (Eng-I) in June at Ascot over good to firm ground, and has earned over $700,000 to date in his three campaigns.

Aidan O'Brien trains Ad Valorem, who arrived at Woodbine from Ireland on Wednesday and will be ridden by four-time Sovereign Award winner Patrick Husbands.

Irish-bred Rebel Rebel (8-1), trained by Richard Dutrow, won the Poker Handicap (gr. IIIT) July 2 at Belmont Park in his best race of the season, defeating Remarkable News in the process. Owned by IEAH Stables and Resolute Group Stable, the 4-year-old son of Revoque was most recently third to Three Valleys in the Oceanport. Edgar Prado, who has been aboard for both of the colt's North American wins, rides again.

Red Oak Stable's British-bred Sweet Return (12-1) is the field's leading money winner by far, with over $1.6 million. Trained by Ron McAnally, Sweet Return has faced the top-ranked Breeders' Cup miler, Aragorn, in his last two starts in California, finishing second in the 1 1/8-mile Eddie Read (gr. IT) and fourth most recently in the Del Mar Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IIT) on Aug. 26.

Although winless in five outings this year, the chestnut 6-year-old son of Elmaamul is a three-time grade I winner and will be handled by Kent Desormeaux, who has won the Mile twice, with Labeeb in 1998 and with Touch of the Blues in 2003.

Italian-bred Becrux (15-1), owned by Team Valor Stables and Gary Barber, finished a closing second to Le Cinquieme Essai in the Play the King Stakes (Can-II) at Woodbine Aug. 26. Trainer Neil Drysdale seeks his third Mile win after scoring with Labeeb in 1998 and Touch of the Blues in 2003.

$1 Million Bell Woodbine Mile Stakes (Can-I, Race 9, 5:06 p.m.), 3 & Up (Turf)
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Vanderlin (GB), 119, Richard Hughes
2. Sweet Return (GB), 121, Kent J. Desormeaux
3. Therecomesatiger (FL), 117, Mark Guidry
4. Shoal Water (ON), 117, Robert C. Landry
5. Ad Valorem (KY), 124, Patrick Husbands
6. Diamond Green (FR), 117, Jose A. Santos
7. Remarkable News (VEN), 121, Javier Castellano
8. Three Valleys (KY), 119, Ramon A. Dominguez
9. Ballast (IRE), 117, Todd Kabel
10. Becrux (ITY), 117, Corey S. Nakatani
11. Rebel Rebel (IRE), 119, Edgar S. Prado
12. Dalavin (FL), 117, Constant Montpellier
13. Captain Kurt (NZ), 117, Emma-Jayne Wilson

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