By Emily Shields
On Sunday at Woodbine Racetrack is the $125,000 Seagram Cup (G3) for older horses on the main track. The race brings together eight foes, many of whom have often knocked heads such as Skywire, Mr Ritz, and Avie’s Flatter.
Surprisingly cold on the tote at 6-1 is #6 Tiz a Slam. The six-year-old son of Tiznow is just short of $1 million in earnings, and is a champion turf marathoner type. But before his time on the grass, the Roger Attfield-trainee was a Grade 3 winner on this track in the Ontario Derby and finished second in the 2017 Queen’s Plate. He was a multiple graded winner on the turf last year, then ran sixth, beaten just four lengths, in his 2020 bow after seven months off. He figures to improve in his second start of the season and is a fantastic price.
#1 Skywire (3-1) drew the rail for trainer Mark Casse. The son of Afleet Alex has won four of 10 starts including the Grade 2 Eclipse over this same trip on July 4. He defeated Mr Ritz and Avie’s Flatter on that day; both of those rivals are back for more here. Hot riding Rafael Hernandez will be aboard.
#2 Mr Ritz (2-1) is the defending champion in this affair and also won the Presque Isle Downs Mile in September. The Eclipse last out was his 2020 debut, and the Josie Carroll trainee finished third after leading earlier in the race. Patrick Husbands will ride the son of Oasis Dream (GB).
#5 Avie’s Flatter (5-2) is Mr Ritz’s stablemate. Second in the Eclipse, the son of Flatter has been first or second in four of five starts here. He was a Grade 3 winner at Keeneland in 2019 after being Canada’s Champion Two Year Oldin 2018, but has not won since last April. He has been knocking on the door, with nine top three efforts in 12 starts. Luis Contreras will ride.
#7 Explode (10-1) is making his 2020 debut after not running since September of last year. The son of Trappe Shot is now in the barn of Stuart Simon, and has been running on the West Coast. This is his Woodbine debut, but he was multiple graded stakes placed and a stakes winner at Hastings and Century Mile last year. Justin Stein will ride the four-year-old gelding.
Jungle Fighter, Cooler Mike, and Perfect Tapatino complete the field. Watch and wager on Woodbine every day with TVG.
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