Florida-breds Sabatini and Mystic Lake are in $125,000 Star Shoot going six furlongs on synthetic for Woodbine Entertainment’s opening day this Saturday at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario. Bred by John and Leslie Malone’s Bridlewood Farm, Sabatini is the favorite at 2 to 1, while fellow Florida-bred Mystic Lake, bred by Peggy Costanzo, goes off at 15 to 1.

Mystic Lake appears to be underrated as the horse comes into the race for owners C2Racing Stable and Stefania Farms after a win on March 24 at Tampa in the Stonehedge Farm South Sophomore Fillies Stakes. The Saffie Joseph Jr trainee won handily in Florida-bred company by three and a half lengths. She finished in the money the three times she ran on the Woodbine oval last year including third in the Grade 2 Mazarine Stakes. In the money five of her seven starts for $183,266 in earnings, the daughter of Mo Town out of Salty Soul by Itsmyluckyday is a two-time Ocala Breeders’ Sales graduate, coming out of the 2022 October sale as a yearling and resold at the March sale by Tom McCrocklin for $130,000.

A daughter of Uncle Mo, Sabatini finished third after a late bid in the stretch in her only start on March 23 at Turfway Park. She breezed one minute for five furlongs on April 19 over the all-weather track giving her a top three time for the day. She was a $625,000 purchase for Alex Solis and Jason Litt’s Solis/Litt partnership out of Joe and Courtney Pickerell’s Pick View consignment at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Sale last year. Sabatini is owned by NK Racing and LNJ Foxwoods. LNJ Foxwoods has had success with Florida-breds, including Florida-bred champion Outfoxed winner of two of three legs for the Florida Sire Stakes in 2022.

Second favorite at 5 to 2 is Dancing Duchess, one of three trained by Hall of Famer Mark Casse in the race. He also trains fellow Ontario-bred CC Royal at 7 to 2 and Winsome Beauty, bred by the late Brereton C. Jones. Sahin Civaci is listed as the rider for both Dancing Duchess and Winsome Beauty, so he’ll have to choose mounts, while Patrick Husbands is aboard CC Royal.

The 2024 season at Woodbine will consist of 129 race dates and runs through Sun., Dec. 15.​ Saturday’s opening day card will feature ten races.  Post time is 1:10 p.m.

The new season is highlighted by the 165th running of The King’s Plate on Sat., Aug. 17. Turf Champions Day on Sat., Sept.14 will have four Grade 1 events including the Woodbine Mile.

The first two weeks of the meet will have racing on Saturdays and Sundays. Woodbine will add Fridays to the racing schedule on May 10 and then add Thursday twilight racing beginning May 23. Post time on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will be 1:10 p.m., while Thursday cards will begin at 4:50 p.m.

Return to the April 26 issue of Wire to Wire