2016 Valedictory Stakes Preview, Entries & Odds

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Dave Bond | OTB Writer

OffTrackBetting.com - The G3 Valedictory Stakes comes our way this Sunday, December 4 from Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario. A purse of $150,000 will be up for grabs for horses three years old and upward willing to go 1 3/4 miles on Woodbine's All Weather Track.

A competitive field of seven will give it a go in the Valedictory Strakes - race 9 on Woodbine's Sunday schedule. Post time is 5:10 PM. Here is a peek into the past performances of all seven combatants for this G3 stakes on the final race card of the 2016 Woodbine thoroughbred racing season.

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2016 Valedictory Stakes Entries at Woodbine Racetrack

Melmich 8-5 - runner-up to Are You Kidding Me in the Sovereign Award voting for champion older male - defending champion in this race and Kevin Attard trained gelding has 11 wins, six seconds and three third place finishes in 26 career starts and enters in very decent form - 10 wins, a second and a third in his last 16 starts overall. Last time out was a fourth in the G2 Marathon Stakes on the Breeders' Cup undercard at Santa Anita after a second in the minor Temperence Hill Invitational at Belmont Park October 2 and a win in the minor OLG Elgin Stakes here October 31. Before that was a third in the G3 Seagram Cup on this track August 1, a 1 1/2 length win in the Grade 3 Dominion Day Stakes July 1, an OK third in the Grade 2 Eclipse Stakes May 28, his superb 10 1/4 length win in track record time in last year's Valedictory Stakes November 29 and an Allowance score November 5. He also had a three race win streak before that including the 2015 OLG Elgin Stakes with a field-best 102 Beyer Speed Figure last September. Melmich has been competitive virtually every time out and will be after the repeat win with Eurico Rosa Da Silva in the irons of the morning line favorite from gate 4.

Aldous Snow 5-2 - won the G3 Singspiel Stakes in 2014 and 2015 on this track for trainer Malcolm Pierce and finished third in that race in 2016. He has been a tad inconsistent otherwise as evidenced by a sixth in the 2015 G2 Sky Classic, eighth place finishes in the 2015 G1 Northern Dancer Turf and G3 Sycamore Stakes in 2015. He does enter on a two race win streak however - both Allowance races here with the last coming November 11. Aldous Snow now has eight wins, five seconds and four third place finishes in 35 career starts and will be after his first graded stakes score in 18 months Sunday. Patrick Husbands has been tabbed to accomplish this goal on the second betting choice from gate 2.

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Mutasaawy 3-1 - Neil Morris trained gelding has six wins, seven seconds and five third place finishes in 30 career starts. He makes his graded stakes debut Sunday on a two race win streak - an Allowance at Pine Mountain November 5 and another Allowance at Great Meadow October 22. He failed to place in three of his previous four starts at a variety of tracks. His only stakes action resulted in an OK third in the minor Secretariat Stakes at Great Meadow in May. Mutasaawy has been OK in his career and will be after a career defining win Sunday from the rail with Guillermo Rodriguez in the saddle of the morning line third choice.

Decision Day 6-1 - Josie Carroll trained gelding has four wins, two seconds and a third place finish in 16 career starts. He enters off an Allowance Optional Claiming score here October 22, a fifth in the G2 Durham Cup on this track September 24 and another Allowance Optional Claiming win here September 4. He has three other career graded stakes tries and has failed to place in any - one being a fifth in the Grade 3 Ontario Derby here in September, 2015. Decision Day has two wins and a second in his last four starts overall and will be after his first graded stakes score from the outside post 7. Gary Boulanger rides.

Bangkok 10-1 - has 24 career starts for trainer W. Philip Gracey with just three wins, three seconds and five third place finishes - all on this track. He makes his stakes debut Sunday in less-than-spectacular form - a third in an Allowance last time out November 11 followed a second in a similar race October 12, a seventh in a Claiming September 5 and a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming July 29. Bangkok tries to snap a five race losing streak in what represents a major step up in competition - from post 5 with Emma-Jayne Wilson guiding him.

Ethical Funds 12-1 - George Billers trained gelding has three wins, five seconds and two third place finishes in 20 career starts - all at Woodbine. He makes his graded stakes debut Sunday off an Allowance Optional Claiming score November 13, a fifth in the minor Bunty Lawless Stakes October 22, a second in an Allowance September 25 and a fifth in the minor OLG Halton Stakes August 31. He placed in five straight Allowance races before that. Ethical Funds has been decent against lesser company but has struggled in his only two stakes starts. Jockey David Moran will try to reverse that trend from gate 6 Sunday.

English Illusion 20-1 - Daniel Vella trained gelding has placed in six of 10 career starts - two wins, a second and three third place finishes - all on this track. Last time out was a sixth in an Allowance November 11 after a third in another Allowance October 12 and a decent third in his only stakes action to date - the G3 Ontario Derby September 17. English Illusion has placed in six of seven starts ahead of this weekend and will be after his first stakes score from post 3. Alan Garcia has the mount.


2016 Valedictory Stakes Odds & Entries

Race 9 on Woodbine's Sunday card with a Post Time of 5:10 PM.

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Mutasaawy 3-1 Guillermo Rodriguez Neil Morris
2 Aldous Snow 5-2 Patrick Husbands Malcolm Pierce
3 English Illusion 20-1 Alan Garcia Daniel Vella
4 Melmich 8-5 Eurico Da Silva Kevin Attard
5 Bangkok 10-1 Emma-Jayne Wilson W. Gracey
6 Ethical Funds 12-1 David Moran George Billers
7 Decision Day 6-1 Gary Boulanger Josie Carroll

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