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2007 Bison City and Dominion Day Stakes

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True Metropolitan wins the 2007 Dominion Day Stakes at Woodbine

True Metropolitan wins the 2007 Dominion Day Stakes at Woodbine

© Terence Dulay
Updated July 02, 2007

July 1 is Canada Day, Canada's equivalent to July 4 in the U.S., and the Woodbine feature on the afternoon is the $200,000 Dominion Day Stakes (G3). A field of six older horses went to the gate in this 1 1/4 mile Polytrack feature, with Eclipse winner Palladio the slight 13-10 favorite over 7-5 second choice and 2006 champion older horse True Metropolitan. Saratoga invader 4-1 Mustanfar rounded out the top three on the toteboard.

Jockey Todd Kabel aboard True Metropolitan set a reserved pace of 23.97, 47.52, and 1:12.12 while being stalked by 65-1 longest shot Getaway Candidate for the first 3/4 mile. On the far turn, Getaway Candidate faded to eventually finish last while Mustanfar, who settled in fifth the whole way, closed the gap out 3 wide and drew even with the pacesetter at the top of the stretch. However, aided by the slow early pace, True Metropolitan dug in late, holding him off by 1/2 a length. It was another 2 lengths back to Palladio in third. The running time of 2:04.20 was a new track record for 1 1/4 miles on the new Polytrack, just installed last August.

Winning jockey Todd Kabel said, "He showed so much grit through the lane. That horse (Mustanfar) came to him a couple of times and he just kept going. He wasn't letting anyone by him. The only way he was going to get caught is if somebody caught him off guard."

Winning trainer Terry Jordan added, "We thought we would let the horse run his own race. We figured we had done enough with him where he would be a little easier to handle. If you don't train him a lot, he gets pretty excited and tries to run away."

The co-feature on Canada Day was the $250,000 Bison City Stakes, the second leg of the Canadian Triple Tiara, contested at 1 1/6 miles on Polytrack. A field of just five 3-year-old fillies entered, with Woodbine Oaks and Bourbonnette winner Sealy Hill sent off as the 2-5 favorite over 5-2 second choice Street Sounds, third in the Oaks last out, shipping in again from Fair Hill, Maryland, and 6-1 third choice Saskawea, runner-up in the Oaks and in the Selene. The Bison City returned to Woodbine for the first time in 28 years and just the fourth time in the event's 54-year history, as it is traditionally run at Fort Erie. Financial difficulties at Fort Erie led to the race being moved back to Toronto, which means that the entire 2007 Triple Tiara will be contested at Woodbine, the final leg being the Wonder Where on the turf on July 28.

Saskawea went to the front and was stalked for 6 furlongs by 16-1 Quiet Jungle through fractions of 23.77, 47.65, and 1:12.04. Street Sounds saved ground early and settled in third with Sealy Hill close behind her. At the quarter pole, Sealy Hill came out three wide and took over the lead with 3/16 of a mile to go, but lugged in badly while doing so, impeding Quiet Jungle in the process. Sealy Hill pulled away to finish in front by 1 1/2 lengths over Street Sounds who finished gamely to get second money over the tiring Quiet Jungle. The running time for 1 1/16 miles was 1:44.01, however, the Inquiry sign immediately flashed on the toteboard as the field galloped out. After examining the video of the stretch run, the stewards disqualified Sealy Hill and placed her third, moving Quiet Jungle up to second place and handing the victory to Street Sounds.

Winning jockey Ramon Dominguez said, "Unfortunately, in the Oaks, she had a very bad ride. I'm still learning about this surface (Polytrack) and the fractions, I realize, were way too fast. Today, I was a little more self-conscious about it. I took a hold of her and let her relax, more like a grass race. She finished up nicely. I was pleased with the way she ran."

Winning trainer Michael Matz said, "It was unfortunate what happened. It happens to all of us, either way. I don't know exactly what went on out there. We'll take the outcome, that's for sure. She rated better today. Ramon (Dominguez) had a bit of trouble with her the day of the Oaks, but today she did everything the right way. The next time we will definitely try her on the turf, whether it's the Wonder Where or a race up at Saratoga."

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