Race 1: 5-3-1
Welcome to Ajax Downs! #5 FLY FAST FOR KAYLEY has been in great form this season, scoring two wins with two very narrow defeats, keeping very good company. In his last start, an open for Ontario Sired runners he was beaten a head by Reckless an Wild and Theydontlikemyname. He looks like he should fit well here. #3 COLE MINER is two-for-two this year, with a win at a higher, optional-claiming level and a dead heat with Waving Sandy Home in a Starter Allowance. He has hit the board in five of his six starts at 350 yards and brings solid form into today's event. #1 WAVING SANDY HOME exits the dead heat with Cole Miner on June 26. She kept respectable form against solid runners like Deal a Fortune, First Lady Katy and Blazin Ivory last year and could end up with a clear running path along the inside today. The Daily Double starts here.
Race 2: 6-5-1
This race begins the early Pick 3. #6 ROUGE RIVER CARTEL finished fifth in a race won by Country Boy 123 on Canada Day but was placed last for interference. I was quite taken with his as a two year old, and although his form this year doesn't appear as great I still think he's got some kick. #5 COOL ALLEY raced here twice last year, finishing third behind Tres Sea and Itoldyouilikeroses and then a green fifth in the John Deere Juvenile Challenge. He broke his maiden in an Oklahoma-bred $10,000 claimer at Remington, finished third for that tag facing non-winners of two, then returned here in the Country Boy 123 race where he stumbled at the start. The last race is certainly forgivable and the Remington form makes him look quite threatening. #1 DO U ZOOM has a case of seconditis, finishing second in half of his eight career starts. He was beaten only a head in last year's Alex Picov Memorial Futurity. In his most recent start he overcame a slow start to dead heat for the place money. A better break can make him a big win threat here.
Race 3: 6-5-2
#6 JESS KISS MY DASH had to spend a lot of time standing in the gate as multiple horses were scratched late on June 26, broke a bit slowly but still outgamed his competition and got up for the win. He's a full brother to Jesskissmytexas, who finished a very close second in Sunday's Ontario Sires Stakes Maturity. He's a solid horse and another win would be no surprise. #5 SPEED OF LIFE finished sixth in the Cole Miner/Waving Sandy Home race on June 26, but was beaten only a 1/2 length by the winners. She takes a drop from a $5,000 starter allowance to an Ontario Sired NW3, a significant move to an easier level. She should be able to run well here. #2 DM AURORA has been very solid this year, with a win and two seconds in four starts. Two back she finished second behind Theydontlikemyname who returned to finish a very narrow second in the Ontario Sired open race on July 10. She's consistently been a good finisher and although her only start at the distance was not a good one, I think 400 yards should suit her well.
Race 4: 3-8-4
This race kicks off the $.20 Pick 4! #3 DASHING OUT OF VEGAS debuted in a $7,000 maiden claimer on June 26 but took himself out of the race as he broke very slowly. He is a full brother to Home to Vegas, who was an impressive winner a few weeks back. Hopefully he gets out of the gate well today. #8 BUSTER BRI loves to finish second, with 10 place finishes in 18 career starts, several of which have been narrow defeats. It's clear that he should eventually get the job done, and this field doesn't look too salty, but tread carefully betting him to win at a short price. #4 LIME KILN LANE debuted with a fourth place finish in a race won by Platinnum, who came back to be a good second in a tough NW2, and followed that up with another fourth facing Ontario Sired runners. He faces Ontario breds today and could improve as he gains experience.
Race 5: 6-2-3
#6 DEAL A FORTUNE didn't show much in his first two starts of the year, but dropped into a Speed Index race and finished second behind Storytime Blue, who returned with another impressive win on Sunday. He's a capable horse; he had two wins last year as well as a solid third in the Adequan Derby Challenge which was won by Seize the Win. He certainly doesn't look outclassed. #2 ILLBEGONEFLYING kicked off the season with a respectable fourth in a QROOI Overnight Series Mares Open, broke poorly on May 29, and returned on July 3 with a win at the Speed Index level. She has been a victim of plenty of poor luck at the start but has proven that when she gets away well she is a game runner. #3 THIS GIRL IS WILD was a close second behind Illbegoneflying after two even efforts to kick off the year. She's not a consistent type but she showed that she can run well at this level and can grab a piece of the action today. Late Pick 3 wagering is offered here.
Race 6: 8-2-1
This race is a 110 yard "Gridiron Gallop" as well as the start of the Late Double. #8 ARCTIC FAME has had two starts at this distance, with a third and a fourth place finish where he was fractious in the gate. He has been a very good breaker in most of his recent starts and draws outside, which is good for a horse who can be restless in the gate. Hopefully he gets out clean. #2 RANDOM AUDIT had two very narrow runner up finishes at this distance to kick off the year before finishing a half length back in another 110 yard race topped by Sign it Down and One Kool Wave. She raced okay in a NW3 on July 10 but certainly has to be considered here given her 110 form. #1 PLATINNUM was an easy maiden winner on June 5 before finishing a good second against NW2 on June 26. She makes her first 110 yard attempt here but seems to have solid gate speed.
Race 7: 4-5-2
Today's feature is a 350 yard open for older horses. #4 SIGN IT DOWN has been terrific this year, winning the QROOI Overnight Series Mares Open, finishing third in the Picov Maturity behind First Down the Track and One Famous Glass, then winning a 110 yard open over One Kool Wave despite a stumble at the start, a very impressive feat. I've often overlooked her as the "other" horse when compared her stablemated, First Down the Track and One Kool Wave, but she's always been respectable and really seems to be coming into her own this year. I think she'll be tough. #5 THE FDD MAP had three wins in six tries last year and never finished worse than third. He made his 2016 debut on Canada Day with a close second behind First Down the Track, finishing 3/4 of a length in front of One Famous Glass in third. He is one of the most solid, hard knocking horses in the province and a win today should come as a surprise to no one. #2 CARAWAY BLUE took a pair of Starter Allowance victories to kick off the season, then ran in the Sign It Down-One Kool Wave 110 yard race where he finished fourth by a 1/2 length. Although I have nothing but respect for this veteran and I don't think he's totally without hope today, the jump from the Starter Allowances to the Open ranks is a tough one.
Good luck and thank you to everyone joining us today!