Northern Dancer Turf Stakes at Woodbine

Dave Bond | OTB Writer

Las Vegas, NV - Woodbine Race Track in beautiful Toronto Ontario plays host to the Grade 1 Northern Dancer Turf Stakes this Sunday, September 16. Horses three years old and upward will be featured as they race 1 1/2 miles on Woodbine's turf track in search of their share of the healthy $500,000 purse.

A talented field of eight will line up in the Northern Dancer on Sunday. It is race 8 on Woodbine's packed Sunday schedule with a post time of 4:37 PM. Let's take a brief glimpse into the past performances of all nine and how this Grade 1 race should play out.

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2012 Northern Dancer Turf Stakes Race Favorites

Scalo - made his North American debut with a third last time out in the Grade 2 Sky Classic Stakes here on August 19. He had six wins and two second place finishes in 11 starts overseas before the Sky Classic - enough to become the morning line favorite for the Northern Dancer. I'm not sure about it, but Scalo must have impressed to get the nod over this strong field.

Muskatier - Roger Attfield entry Muskatier is a multiple graded stakes winner. Last time out he finished a decent second behind 41-1 longshot Ioya Bigtime in the Grade 3 Stars and Stripes Stakes at Arlington Park to follow up a win in the Grade 3 Singspiel Stakes here on June 24. He has 11 wins in a whopping 48 career starts and has placed in three of four starts in 2012. His only blemish this year is a fourth in the Grade 3 Elkhorn. Muskatier is experienced, is in good form at present and he should contend this Sunday.

Northern Dancer Turf Stakes 2012 | Remaining Field Entries

Al Khali - finished third in this race last year and is coming off a good second last time out in the Grade 1 Sword Dancer at Saratoga August 18 to follow a decent third in the Grade 1 United Nations. He actually finished 2011 off in decent form with a third in the Grade 1 Sword Dancer and a third in the 2011 version of this race. He has had some sketchy results in 2012 however - an eleventh in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, a sixth in the Grade 1 Manhattan Handicap and a tenth in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap but he has looked good in his last two starts.

Wigmore Hall - is the defending champion in this race but enters after a rather disappointing trip overseas in which he placed in just one of seven races and a seventh in his return to North America last time out in the Grade 1 Arlington Millions. He has to be on the radar based on his win here last year but it is clear that Wigmore Hall is not in the best form at present.

Northern Dancer Turf Stakes betting at Woodbine with

Forte Dei Marmi - has 23 career starts with seven wins. Last time out was an impressive win in the Grade 2 Sky Classic Stakes here on August 19 but that result followed a sixth in the Colonial Turf Cup Stakes at Colonial Downs on June 16 and a decent third in the Grade 3 Dixie Stakes at Pimlico in May. Forte Dei Marmi started 2012 with a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Gulfstream and followed it with a win in an Allowance before the Dixie. He was tenth in this race last year but has placed in four of his five starts in 2012 including two wins.

Irish Mission - has won three of her last four starts and races against males this time. Sunday marks her graded stakes debut after winning two minor strakes - the Breeders' Stakes last time out here and the Woodbine Oaks June 3 and finishing second behind Straight of Dover in the Queen's Plate Stakes on June 24. Irish Mission has three wins and two second place finishes in 11 career starts.

Celtic Conviction -most recently finished third in the minor Halton Stakes to follow a fifth in the Grade 3 Singspiel and a fifth in the Allowance Optional Claiming that Cognashene won. Celtic Conviction has raced exclusively at Woodbine and has placed in seven of 16 career starts including three wins early in his career.

Ojibway Signal - is stakes places but races in graded stakes company for the first time on Sunday after seven straight Allowance races produced just one win (last time out) and a third place finish. In 21 career starts Ojibway Signal has four wins and three third place finishes.

2012 Northern Dancer Turf Stakes Entries & Odds

Race 8 on Woodbine's Sunday card with a Post Time of 4:37 PM.

Post Horse Jockey Trainer ML Odds
1 Celtic Conviction J. Campbell M. Doyle
2 Ojibway Signal L. Contreras D. Bell
3 Al Khali G. Gomez W. Mott
4 Scalo (GB) U. Rispoli A. Woehler
5 Forte Dei Marmi (GB) A. Solis R. Attfield
6 Musketier (GER) J. Velazquez R. Attfield
7 Wigmore Hall (IRE) J. Spencer M. Bell
8 Irish Mission J. Stein M. Frostad

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