Carroll horses look live on Woodbine Mile Day

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

September 15th, 2016

Trainer Josie Carroll is no stranger to Woodbine Race Course, nor Canadian racing in general, as the 58-year-old conditioner has been a local mainstay since going out on her own in 1994. Carroll became the first female trainer to bag the country’s most prestigious event, the Queen’s Plate, with Edenworld in 2006 and has amassed more than $40 million with her starters to date.

She is winning at a 20% clip in 2016 and I think Carroll has a few very live ones at Woodbine on Saturday.

Race 3 is a maiden event for juveniles and we are tabbing TRICKY GAMBLE for a big run first-time out. The dark bay son of capable debut sire Hat Trick has landed in a winnable spot with many first-time starters hailing from barns not known for their prowess with newbies and the Ontario-bred could be a nice way to get some greenbacks in your account in advance of the big turf races later in the day.

The March foal is kin to seven winners, most importantly Gamble's Ghost, a fine two-year-old of 2015 who bagged the Mazarine S. (Can-G3) and finished second in the Natlama S. (Can-G2) and Princess Elizabeth S. In addition, this intriguing prospect draws a fine post and should be dead-fit under Luis Contreras as he has not missed a single morning workout since late June. Carroll wins at a strong 20% click when debuting in maiden special weight races and we fully expect a nice showing from Tricky Gamble, who has likely been pointed for a while towards this spot on Woodbine Mile Day. If he opens up live in the early betting, jump on board.

BUTTON DOWN is an appealing price play in the Northern Dancer (Can-G1), carded as Race 10. The Carroll pupil will make a third start off the layoff and progressed last time despite traffic issues in the Sky Classic (Can-G2) at 10 panels, finishing a better-than-it-looked fourth versus males. The daughter of Oasis Dream could sit a dream trip in second or third, saving all the ground to the top of the lane in a race with few pace players.

The talented bay mare has proven in her last pair of tries that she can run with the boys, evidenced by a solid second in the Nijinsky (Can-G2) two back on this course, and the progression to 1 1/2 miles looks to be another positive. Button Down shows two nice turf works in preparation and jockey Gary Boulanger should be in a prime spot to challenge at the top of the vast stretch aboard the serious top-three contender.

On a side note, I like a horse named Tepin a little bit in the finale. She has some talent I am told.