By Emily Shields
All eyes will be on even-money choice Elusive Knight in the $100,000 Display Stakes at Woodbine Racetrack on Saturday, December 14. The son of Ghostzapper has drawn the rail and takes on a field of four rivals. The race takes place over closing weekend of Woodbine’s marathon 2019 meet.
#1 Elusive Knight is trained by Sid Attard, and has been ridden in both career starts by Rafael Hernandez. He broke his maiden on debut here over six furlongs, winning by three lengths in a good time. The horse who ran third that day, Stormy Soul, won next out. That left Elusive Knight as a strong favorite for an allowance race over seven furlongs on November 24, but he finished second, rallying from behind after an off break. His pedigree suggests the two turns here will suit.
#2 Vanzzy is 5-2, and blinkers go on for this. He ships in from his home base of Parx Racing where he broke his maiden second out on October 14, winning by more than two lengths. He then ran second at 9-1 in the Parx Juvenile November 5 after a bad break and a bump, but has had a pair of strong works since then and the blinkers should help.
#3 Northern Thunder (9-2) is the stablemate of the top choice. He won here over this distance in September and has run three times since then, running fifth in the Cup and Saucer, sixth in the Grey (G3), and sixth in the prestigious Coronation Futurity. Leading rider Eurico Rosa Da Silva will ride in his second to last ever stakes start before retirement.
#4 Finalist (7-2) has only won once, and that was at Gulfstream Park in August. He was third on the grass here, fifth in the grade 3 Grey, and then sixth in the race where Elusive Knight was second last out. Mark Casse trains the $200,000 son of Tonalist.
#5 Red Mercury (20-1) is a maiden who takes blinkers off for this. The son of Street Boss was fifth on debut here Novemebr 17 sprinting, and stretches out now. He showed some speed that day but faces a tall task here.Bet on all the closing-weekend races with TVG.
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