Woodbine Feature Race Spot Plays for Sunday, July 21

Profile Picture: Noel Michaels

Noel Michaels

July 20th, 2019

Sunday’s 11-race card at Woodbine features a graded turf sprint and an expensive allowance around two turns on the main track as its two highly-playable featured races. Both races have big wide open fields filled with several contenders. If you can tear yourself away from Sunday action at Saratoga and Del Mar, Woodbine would make a good third track to focus on to round out your weekend of racing and wagering. Woodbine’s Sunday stakes is the C$175,000 Royal North Stakes (G2) at six furlongs on the main turf course for three-year-old and up, fillies and mares which goes as Race 9. The race before the feature is also a good betting race. Race 8 is a 1 1/16-mile main track allowance. Both races drew fields of eight. Race 8 – Allowance This allowance race offers a great opportunity to beat the morning-line favorite and make some money by focusing on the other three main contenders in the race in exactas and trifectas. The likely favorite looks like Who’s Got It (#2) (2-1), but while the six-year-old gelding has plenty of ability on Woodbine’s synthetic racing surface, he loses much more often than he wins (three wins from 27 starts on this track) and probably needs this race off a seven-month layoff. Plus, there are other very solid contenders in this race to focus on at potentially better odds. The horse to beat is Silent Jet (#7) (3-1), who has won three races in a row on the Woodbine main track, including a score at this distance with a solid BRIS Speed figure two races ago. Lost on the turf last out, but nevertheless stayed in tip-top form in that $100,000 allowance by finishing a solid third from post 12 in a 12-horse field. Versatile pace horse can win on the front end, or he can press or stalk the pace and win anyway. The horse who could really bump up the value of your exotics in this race is Coleyville (#8) (6-1), who sneakily improved last time out in the same allowance race that Silent Jet exits. Seems equally as good on a synthetic track as on turf, and blazed a bullet workout on this main track since last raced to indicate continued good fitness. The other main contender for the exotics is Courtly Manner (#1) (7-2), who has won at this trip here on Woodbine’s main track and has been knocking on the door in similar recent races at this level. Use the aforementioned trio, Courtly Manner (#1), Silent Jet (#7) and Coleyville (#8) in the exactas and trifectas. Race 9 – Royal North Stakes (G2) The Sunday featured Royal North Stakes (G2) can also be attacked with a similar three-horse exacta and trifecta box strategy, but instead of avoiding the favorite in Race 9 as is recommended in Race 8, the favorites should be the focus of your plays in the Royal North. The horse to beat looks like Oleksandra (#3) (2-1), who ships up to Woodbine off of back-to-back turf sprint wins at Belmont Park at this six-furlong distance. Oleksandra is a turf sprint monster who rarely loses in these races, having compiled a record of five wins in six turf sprint outings since arriving in North America for trainer Neil Drysdale. The x-factor in the race will be likely favorite Summer Sunday (#4) (8-5), who seems like the best and fastest horse in the race but who has yet to run on turf. If she’s as good on the turf as on the synthetic, she wins, but you just never know until she’s done it. Based on her back-to-back stakes wins in her last two races, including a win in Woodbine’s Hendrie Stakes (G3) with a huge BRIS Speed figure, she certainly would be difficult to leave off your tickets. If for any reason Summer Sunday does not handle the turf, the horse most likely to fill out her spot in the exactas would be Ruby Notion (#2) (5-1). Slow to round back into top form this season at Churchill Downs, Ruby Notion is nevertheless the most accomplished turf sprinter in this field with a Grade 3 win last year at Kentucky Downs followed by a fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1). From a betting perspective in The Royal North, box Ruby Notion (#2), Oleksandra (#3) and Summer Sunday (#4) in both the exactas and trifectas, and you should be nailing down the three main contenders in the race. You should at least hit the exacta, and if you add the trifecta you could turn the race into a nice score. Enjoy a great card of racing and wagering Sunday at Woodbine! PHOTO: Ruby Notion (c) Reed Palmer Photography