Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 1 Nearctic Stakes is on tap for Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario this Sunday, October 13. Horses three years old and upward will be involved in this six furlong dash as they chase the winner's share of the $300,000 purse around Woodbine's turf track.
The Nearctic Stakes has a field of 11 to go in race 8 on Woodbine's Saturday schedule. Post time is 4:24 PM. Here is a look into the past performances of all 11 combatants for this Grade 1 stakes. A win here would mean an automatic berth into the Breeders' Cup Turf Spring November 2 at Santa Anita.
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2013 Nearctic Stakes Race Favorite Entries
Riding the River - Last year's champion grass horse in Canada has raced exclusively at Woodbine. He has just five starts this year - a reasonable second in the Grade 2 Connaught Cup Stakes May 26 after eight months away and a repeat win in the Grade 2 King Edward Stakes June. Last time out was a fourth in the very tough Woodbine Mile September 15 after an OK third in the Grade 3 Play the King Stakes August 25 and his worst effort in quite some time - an ugly seventh in the Grade 2 Nijinsky July 21. He has nine wins, three seconds and three third place finishes in 25 career starts but does have three wins, two seconds and a third in his last nine starts overall. He is the most decorated entry in the field and the likely favorite Sunday.
Excaper - finished second in the 2011 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf and looked good in the summer of 2012 with a win and a pair of seconds. He raced to a second last September in the Grade 3 Kent Stakes at Saratoga but closed out his 2012 campaign with a disappointing eighth in the Grade 3 Commonwealth Turf Stakes at Churchill Downs. He has just three starts in 2012 - an Allowance Optional Claiming score on this track July 19 after and eight month layoff , a very good second behind Dimension in the Grade 2 Play the King Stakes August 25 and a sixth last time out in the competitive Woodbine Mile last time out September 15. He will be looking for his first stakes win Sunday and enters as one of the most experienced against top competition.
Nearctic Stakes 2013 | Remaining Contenders
Bear No Joke - Reade Baker trained gelding is coming off a nice win in the minor Kenora Stakes here August 28 after a pair of sixths in graded stakes action - the Grade 3 Highlander Stakes July 7 and the Grade 2 Connaught Cup in May. His best graded stakes result came on this track in November - a second in the Grade 3 Kennedy Road Stakes but has placed in just one of four starts this year - that win last time out. He is likely the best of the three Bear Stales entries and will be ridden by Eurico Rosa Da Silva
Bear Tough Tiger - had three straight Allowance scores last summer and went on to a third in the 2012 Nearctic Stakes in October. He finished his 2012 campaign with a nice win in the Grade 3 Kennedy Road Stakes at Woodbine in November and then took five months off. In four starts this year Bear Tough Tiger has a second in the minor Jacques Cartier Stakes on this track behind Essence Hit Man April 27, a disappointing eighth in the Grade 2 Connaught Cup here May 26, a fifth in the Grade 3 Bold Venture here July 17 and an Allowance Optional Claiming score at this distance last time out on this track August 18. He has won nine of 16 career starts and could surprise the field Sunday.
Fatal Bullet - had an Allowance score in his first start of 2013 after six months away and was fourth in his only other start this year - last time out in the Grade 3 Highlander Stakes here July 7. He participated in this race in 2011 - a tenth place finish and has failed to hit the board in any of his four graded stakes starts since. He has 12 wins in 37 starts but hasn't recorded a stakes win in four years.
Nearctic Stakes betting at Woodbine Racetrack with OffTrackBetting.com
Longhunter - Michael Maker trained British bred gelding enters the Nearctic in very good form - four wins in his last five starts including the minor Kentucky Downs Turf Dash last time out and three straight wins this summer at Woodbine Racetrack. He did have a hiccup July 21 - a sixth in the minor Fiddlers Patriot Stakes at Saratoga but has looked very good otherwise. He has raced just once in graded stakes company back in June 2011 - a fourth in the Grade 3 Hill Prince. He steps up again this weekend hoping to keep his recent roll going.
Mr. Online - has alternated wins and seconds in his last four starts - last time out was a second to Ben's Cat in the minor Laurel Turf Dash at Laurel Park September 1 after an Allowance Optional Claiming score August 24, a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming and a Claiming score at Parx in July. He races in graded stakes company for the first time Sunday after five wins, three seconds and three third place finishes in 23 career starts.
Langstaff - Robert Tiller trained gelding races in graded stakes company for the first time Saturday but has placed in all six career starts ahead of thee Nearctic. He won his stakes debut on this track at this distance - the Bold Ruckus Stakes June 8 and followed that with a pair of seconds in minor stakes action. Last time out was a third in the minor Vice Regent Stakes on this track September 1. He faces older competition for the first time Sunday but looks to be in decent form ahead of the Nearctic.
Phil's Dream - has raced exclusively at Woodbine with six wins, two seconds and a third place finish in 11 career starts and enters this weekend having won five of his last six starts including his stakes debut last time out - the minor Overskate Stakes September 22. He steps up in graded stakes company for the first time Sunday looking to carry on his recent success.
Strong Impact - had a sixth last time out in the Grade 3 Turf Monster at Parx September 2 after a third directly ahead of Tripski in the minor Troy Stakes at Saratoga August 14. Before that was two straight wins - the minor Fiddlers Patriot Stakes at Saratoga July 21 and an Allowance Optional Claiming at Woodbine Racetrack in June. He has 36 career starts with eight wins, seven seconds and six third place finishes.
Tripski - hasn't recorded a win in six starts this year and hasn't tasted victory in over a year when he won the minor Eillo Stakes at Calder September 1, 2012 and an Allowance Optional Claiming in August 2012. This year he had a second in the minor Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint in July at Calder and a pair of thirds but has failed to place in his last two starts overall.
2013 Nearctic Stakes Entries & Odds
Race 8 on Woodbine Racetrack's Sunday card with a Post Time of 4:24 PM.
|1||Langstaff||J. Campbell||R. Tiller|
|2||Bear Tough Tiger||E. Wilson||R. Baker|
|3||Fatal Bullet||J. McAleney||R. Baker|
|4||Longhunter (GB)||A. Garcia||M. Maker|
|5||Phil's Dream||J. Stein||P. Buttigieg|
|6||Bear No Joke||E. Da Silva||R. Baker|
|7||Strong Impact||A. Solis||B. Brown|
|8||Mr. Online||K. Carmouche||M. Pino|
|9||Excaper||L. Contreras||I. Black|
|10||Tripski||P. Husbands||C. Brown|
|11||Riding the River||T. Kabel||D. Cotey|