Pattison Canadian Invitational- Grade 1 ($800.000 Purse)
WO- For Three Year Olds and Upward
One Mile and One Half on the Turf
October 12, 2019
It’s Pattison weekend up north, as the 14th running of the Grade 1 race will run at WO. It is a race that has been kind to repeat winners with both Siberian Rhythm and Bronze Sabre accomplishing the feat. Bronze Sabre won it three years in a row. Now, we will see if Taniwha can add his name to the list. Last year, Taniwha changed up his racing style for the race and ran on the lead early instead of looking to come from behind, and it proved to be a successful plan. He will have to do it with another jockey, however, as the great F Pennington will be aboard Crafty Shenanigans in this race. The gate is full with fourteen horses, so let’s take a look at them!
#1- Call Me Spanish (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by Mario Gutierrez)- Comes off a win two weeks ago at the Grade 2 Henry Championship against a quality field. If we throw out his 10th place finish at the Sword Dancer, he has actually been on very good form since the spring. I’m not that concerned here with the short rest, but it is worth a mention.
#2- Confined (Mb Stables, ridden by M Tunon)- This three year old has had two months of rest, last racing in the Arlington Million, a race in which he was seventh, and never a threat to the leaders. He tried to come from way back there, and simply conceded too much ground, so I don’t think that will be the case here again.
#3- Taniwha (Aml Racing, ridden by Mar Garcia)- The winner of the 2018 Pattison seeks to become the third horse to successfully defend their championship. He’s won twice this year, but only one win that will strike fear to his rivals, the Grade 2 BEL Gold Cup in June. Pulled a no show in his last start, the Sword Dancer, and perhaps that is why Pennington was taken off the ride.
#4- Chayse (Crocker Ggs, ridden by Alan Garcia)- Won his debut at twelve furlongs right here at WO in late July at the Grade 2 Nijinsky Stakes, earning a 100 SRF in the process. If that can duplicated here, he should be a good contender. However, he cannot fall as far behind as he did in his last race, also here, in the Northern Dancer BC Turf.
#5- Mometus (Mb Stables, ridden by A Beschizza)- The second of the three horses in the field for Mb Stables, and the one that is the least well known. Those are the ones that always end up dangerous in a race like this. This is only his seventh race, and he is just beginning to find himself, as he comes off a win at the Spa at the $100.000 Johns Call, with a 99 SRF earned.
#6- Crafty Shenanigans (Mb Stables, ridden by F Pennington)- Hardly ever see autogens in races like this anymore, but this five year old gelding hit all of the right randoms when that slot machine lever was pulled. He ran here back in 2017, and finished second. Overall, he has eight wins in 25 starts, but has never won a graded stake, which is interesting when considering his over $800.000 in earnings.
#7- People Doubted (Aml Racing, ridden by E Maldonado)- Acquired from the Mb machine in April 2018 for $400.000 in private sales to get the trainer in the KYD that year, but he has gone on to be so much more, taking a true liking to the grass. Won two Grade 1’s last year, and his biggest score in 2019 came in the Grade 2 San Marcos in Feburary.
#8- Coco (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by M J Sanchez)- After finishing third in the Arlington Million, he was sold the next day in private sales for $400.000. He was part of that nutty JC Derby race last month, and did manage to come up for fifth. This should be a lot more normal of a race, as I cannot see anyone running a crazy pace. He is out of Future Is Bleak, but based on form, his future is anything but.
#9- Oh Awesome One (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by J R Velazquez)- The seven year old by El Gran Broomstick will be making his 45th career start. For the most part that was as a sprinter, but TwinTowers completely changed his style after picking him up for just $10.000, running him long on the grass. He’s won once, and has had some close finishes in top races, but has not been consistent.
#10- First Class Male (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by J Pimentel)- Won his last race, coming right here at WO in the Grade 1 Northern Dancer BC Turf, a race in which he came from well off to pace to win. That was an important race for him, as he had been needing to rebound from a dud of a race at the Forbidden Apple. Looks like this race has quite a few good closers, though, so he will need to be first class here.
#11- Sunlander (Estero Farms, ridden by R Bejarano)- After being 28 lengths back after four furlongs in the JC Derby, Sunlander rallied to finish second. This race should not have the nonsensical pace that one did, but it did bode well for a horse that typically ran at the front to make a late bid. May try that style again, which makes him like several in this field.
#12- Trouville (Royalty Stables, ridden by B J Hernandez Jr)- Claimed for $20.000 at PRX in June, Trouville stepped up with two good runs in August for his trainer, the second of which came right here at 12 furlongs in the $100.000 Halton Stakes for Canadians. This will be a much stronger field, but if he can duplicate that effort he is as good as anyone here.
#13- Tourniquet (Mo Mentum Farm, ridden by T Gaffalione)- He has been a regular in ON-bred races, and five of his last seven starts have come right here at WO. Two of those races were wins, highlighted by the $400.000 Breeders Stakes on yielding turf, defeating just two rivals. Against more competition, and without a statebred designation, he turned in a sixth place effort at the Northern Dancer.
#14- Sumi Gaeshi (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by G Boulanger)- The gelding makes the ninth start of his career, and comes out of the JC Derby, where he ran fourth. He has yet to win a stake, and the highlight of his career thus far was a third place at the Grade 1 United Nations. His style could be good here, but overcoming this post is always a problem.