Owner/trainer tandem wins both Ajax Downs Trials and qualifies all five horses for Futurity final


Published June 16, 2022 at 9:44 am

Firstprize Charlotte won her career debut in the second Trial for the Ontario Bred Futurity. (New Image Media/Clive Cohen photo)

Owner Richard Wincikaby and trainer Michelle Woodley went five-for-five at the Ontario Bred Futurity trials Wednesday at Ajax Downs, winning both races and qualifying all five youngsters entered for the $60,000 final on July 6.

Firstprize Charlotte was a dominating winner of the second Trial for two year-olds, setting the fastest time of the two 300-yard Trials at 15.584 to earn a two-length victory under jockey Cory Spataro over stablemate Da Zoom, with Cassandra Jeschke riding. Firstprize Charlotte, making her career debut, was bred by Wincikaby and is a daughter of the late Ontario stallion Dashair from the mare Ms First Prize Pearl, a five-time winner at Ajax Downs.

One race earlier, it was Spataro riding the Wincikaby-owned and bred, Woodley-trained Sour Candy, who won the first Trial – also in the horse’s first career start – by a neck over Silver Lyning, owned and bred by Woodley, with the second-fastest time of the Trials of the 15.642. Sour Candy is the son of Jess Good Candy. Silver Lyning was one length ahead of third-place finisher Had to Be Ivy, the race favourite. Another Wincikaby/ Woodley trainee, Quick Asa Hicccup finished fourth.

“It’s awesome,” said Woodley, who trains her horses with partner and former leading Ajax Downs jockey Jorn McInerney. “We start the babies in the fall and … you hope that they make the races. I have to give John most of the credit. The babies are his passion and he loves them and spends an enormous amount of time with them.”

“It takes a village though. Cory and Ed Walton and Ray McLellan help us at the farm and the track and the gate guys here are great. And we couldn’t do any of this without the Wincikabys who breed and buy nice horses and give them to us.”

The ten fastest qualifiers from the two Trials advanced to the final on July 6.

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