Ticker
  •  Better Lucky rolls late in the Shine Again!Posted 2 days ago
  •  Fashion Alert outduels Take Charge Brandi in the Schuylerville!Posted 5 days ago
  •  Enterprising flies late to win the Oceanside!Posted 6 days ago
  •  Belle Gallantey shocks Princess of Sylmar in the Delaware Handicap!Posted 11 days ago
  •  Finnegans Wake defeats Admiral Kitten by an eyelash in the Arlington 'Cap!Posted 11 days ago
  • There will be a Pick Six carryover of $167,021 when racing resumes Friday at Los Alamitos.Posted 13 days ago
  • There will be a Pick Six carryover of $42,460 when racing resumes Thursday at Los Alamitos.Posted 14 days ago
  •  Assateague goes wire to wire in the Dr. James Penny Memorial!Posted 15 days ago
  •  Assateague goes wire to wire in the Dr. James Penny Memorial!Posted 15 days ago
  • Clearly Now breaks the 7f track record at Belmont - 1:19.96.Posted 18 days ago
HRN Original Blog:
Thoroughly Woodbine

Dance Smartly Stakes features return of Marketing Mix

Sunday’s Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes didn’t lure a great deal of talent for the $300,000 purse being offered, but at the very least it does feature the return of the ultra-consistent Ontario-bred Marketing Mix, who seeks to build on a 6-for-12 lifetime record.
After a win and a fourth to kick off her four-year-old campaign, the Glen Hill Farm charge took the Woodbine season’s first local turf event for fillies and mares by 1 ¼ lengths on June 2 over soft terrain. She earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 93, which wasn’t unlike the number she earned in her first performance of the year.
Once again, trainer Tom Proctor has given jockey Julien Leparoux the call aboard the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro. The Dance Smartly will be Leparoux’s fifth consecutive mount on Marketing Mix.
Winless over the Woodbine polytrack, Leparoux is looking for his fifth career victory over the E.P. Taylor Turf Course. Last year, he guided Turallure to a dramatic score in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile.
Among Marketing Mix’s six competitors are Zadracarta winner Moment of Majesty, as well as Indian Pond and Inglorious, the third and fourth place finishers in the one-mile Nassau.
The Woodbine media office suggests Queen’s Plate winner Inglorious is renewing her rivalry with Marketing Mix. Not sure that three meetings in 13 months can really be called a rivalry, especially when there’s been no question which filly has been better in the two most recent events, one of which took place in a Keeneland allowance.
If Inglorious is renewing any sort of rivalry, it’s with an unknown number of Canadian racing gods that have taken issue with the decision-making of her owners and cursed her with a nasty competitive slump that has kept her from the winner’s circle for over a year.
Inglorious has lost four times over four different surfaces since her impressive Queen’s Plate score, including twice this year. In the aforementioned Keeneland allowance that showcased how Marketing Mix can capitalize beautifully on a tactical advantage, Inglorious and Luis Contreras demonstrated how a strong rally isn’t always enough to return to the winner’s circle. He had her positioned five lengths back of a moderate pace of :48-flat, in eighth. As the tempo picked up in the latter half of the event, Marketing Mix had too much left in reserve. As she’s repeatedly shown, she’s too classy not to convert that kind of set-up. Inglorious closed determinedly to be second.
The same dynamics carried Marketing Mix to victory in the Nassau Stakes. Leparoux positioned her in her usual spot, about two or three lengths behind the leader. She stayed outside for clear run and when the time came, she rallied to the front and stayed on with fine energy for a confident score, her fifth in seven starts. Contreras kept Inglorious closer to the soft pace in the Nassau so she wouldn’t be left with as much to do. Alas, he rode her into a stretch trap. By the time he could find running room, Marketing Mix was home free.
Did the trouble cost Inglorious a victory in the Nassau? Not likely given how she finished the race, conceding third position to a relatively unproven commodity in Indian Pond, who was in action for the first time in 2012. It’s almost alarming that the daughter of Hennessy lacked the stretch punch that has been her calling card throughout her career. Notwithstanding the trouble that delayed her rally, she should not have been worse than third in the Nassau.
Some would say that the soft ground may have complicated Inglorious during her late rally. If so, then why isn’t Contreras back aboard in the Dance Smartly? Usually trainers don’t fire jockeys that carry their mounts to the promise land of the Queen’s Plate because their runner shows a disliking for a particular surface.
With Patrick Husbands given the call aboard Inglorious, it would appear from reading between the lines that Contreras is being blamed for the champion three-year-old filly’s defeat in the Nassau. Did he get her into trouble? Indeed he did. But he got her into trouble trying to take advantage of the best trip available over this quirky turf course – the paths towards the inside. The seam, and consequently, the room, just didn’t materialize in time. It’s a bit extreme to fault him for that. Then again, it mustn’t be forgotten that we are dealing with the same extreme connections that skipped the $500,000 second jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown to freshen a horse for a 35-length defeat in a Saratoga Grade 1.
It would seem the Donver contingent feels that Husbands can get their filly out of the Canadian Triple Crown curse they’re star runner is currently under – zero-for-4 and counting since the decision to skip the Prince of Wales. It’s not going to work. The racing gods aren’t going to allow Inglorious to win a race named after a phenomenal Triple Crown winner
For the hex to be broken, Donver needs to do something big –like hold a press conference and recognize publicly that they made a huge mistake last year. They need to reaffirm their commitment to Canadian racing and its fans. Most importantly, perhaps, they need to say something that will change the minds of the trainer and owners of Strait of Dover, Danny Vella, Wally and Terry Leong (Canyon Farms), who are venturing down the same road less travelled. With the 2012 Prince of Wales set for next weekend, time is of the essence as Canada’s racing gods conspire to send another equine star down the path of everlasting regression.

 

comments powered by Disqus

Older Comments about Dance Smartly Stakes features return of Marketing Mix...

Last year's Queens Plate winner looked good for a few strides then HUNG, noticeably
I think Inglorious will find the winner's circle today!
This one is definitely vulernable as Irish breds almost OWN the unique grass course at Woodbine. Who knows what the Irish Kissable can do and If Inglorious continues her good swtich the grass, the BOTH could finish in front of the UNDERLAID even money morning line choice

Categories

Meet Adam Hickman
I join the Horse Racing Nation team as a longtime fan and enthusiastic student of Canadian thoroughbred racing. With 22 years of race-watching and form-studying under my belt, I’m a graduate of an era that brought stars like With Approval, Izvestia, Dance Smartly and Peteski. I spent the better part of the 1990s as a casual fan, attending races on weekends. I had the privilege of being in the grandstand on one of the premiere days in Woodbine lore – the 1996 Breeders’ Cup, the one and only time the Stanley Cup of thoroughbred racing was held outside of the United States.
 
In 2000, about two years after graduating from Carleton University with a Journalism degree, I crossed the apron and joined the employee ranks at the Woodbine Entertainment Group, taking a position as a field camera operator that eventually led to an Associate Producer’s role in the Woodbine Broadcast Department. I developed and produced several regular segments that have aired over Woodbine’s simulcast network as well as on the national network broadcasts.  In 2005, I moved to the Woodbine Publicity Office to perform various media relations duties and write for WoodbineEntertainment.com.
 
If there’s a thread that defined my 11-year tenure during all three WEG positions, it’s that I engineered my contribution around bridging the information gap between fan and horse.  One such initiative came in 2010, when I endeavored to bring fans regular morning Woodbine workout coverage, shooting and uploading close to 500 videos over the season. While I have moved on from my communications coordinator position to pursue different freelance opportunities, my dedication to providing fans with relevant insight and unique information won’t ever cease to be a part of my ongoing adventures in horse racing.