This weekend at Woodbine was really the last serious chance to punch
a ticket to Louisville for three Breeders’ Cup grass races. As seems to
be the custom for this weekend of racing, it was dominated by the
Europeans who brought 15 of the 28 horse entered in the three “Win and
You’re in” events: The Nearctic (Turf Sprint), E.P. Taylor (F&M
Turf) and The Pattison Canadian International (Turf).
Returning to Woodbine for the second time in a month was UK invader Redwood,
who had won the Northern Dancer (G1) over the same course and distance
just 27 days earlier. However this time he would be accompanied by
three other fellow Europeans: Chinchon, who won the United Nations (G1) earlier this summer at Monmouth, came from France, Mores Wells also from France and the lone 3-year-old in the race from Ireland, Joshua Tree.
I was at Woodbine for Redwood’s last victory and going into that
race I thought he was a complete standout. His European form was good,
but he also made a very impressive appearance in the paddock that day
after the long trans-Atlantic journey. Therefore I was eager to see how
he had responded to shipping back to England and then back to Canada in
just under a month. Once I saw him again in the paddock I understand
how he was bet down to favoritism for the International. Again, he
looked an absolute picture in the paddock, exactly how he had presented
himself in the Northern Dancer.