Richest Quarter Horse race in Canada highlights Wednesday card at Ajax Downs


Published October 25, 2021 at 10:04 am

Jennifer Morrison

The richest Quarter Horse race in Canada headlines Ajax Downs’ biggest day of racing this Wednesday with the running of the $115,290 Alex Picov Memorial Futurity for 2-year-olds.

The 400-yard race has a strong field of 10 juveniles, the fastest qualifiers from two Trial races held on October 4. The 21st Futurity is race eight on a big card of racing that also includes the 48th running of the $49,340 Alex Picov Memorial Championship and the 10th running of the Ontario Sires Stakes Derby, worth $52,560.

Richard Wincikaby’s undefeated Lethal Tres Seis, trained by Michelle Woodley, is a perfect two-for two having won his career debut on September 1 followed by an impressive win in the second Trial for the Futurity. The Oklahoma-bred gelding by top sire Tres Seis overcame a bit of a slow start in his Trial win but quickly grabbed the lead to win by half a length under jockey Cory Spataro. His Trial time of 20.30 was good for an 88-speed index.

“He ran really well in his Trial,” said Woodley, who won the 2021 Futurity with Corderoy Road. “He left a little slow but closed really well and ran really game and brave. If he breaks a little better and can stay out of trouble I think we should be close.”

Lethal Tres Seis will start from post six in the final.

SW The Redeemer, owned by Burlington’s Milena Kwiecien and trained by Pontypool’s Jason Pascoe, was making his Ajax Downs debut when he won his Futurity Trial. The brown gelding began his career in Oklahoma where he was stakes placed and led throughout his Trial to win by 1 3/4 lengths in 20.28 for an 89-speed index. Ricardo Moreno will ride SW The Redeemer and the pair start from post 10. Pascoe, who saddles six of the 10 entrants, has won three Picov Futurities including the 2020 edition with Streakinlilwagon.

Top Woodbine Thoroughbred jockey Rafael Hernandez makes his Ajax Downs debut on Wednesday and rides Keepr of the Stars for owner Belinda Taggart from post four.

The Alex Picov Memorial Championship for 3-year-olds and upward at 440-yards has five of Ajax Downs’ top stakes winners who have won 61 races collectively. Had To Be Ivory, the 2019 Horse of the Year, comes in on a three-race winning streak including a track-record setting score in the Distance Series and a gritty win in the Ontario Bred Maturity. Carol and Jaime Robertson’s Ontario-bred 6-year-old, with 16 career wins, has only tried the Championship once in his career, finishing fourth in 2019 to Country Boy 123. Stablemates Spy for the Senate and Maryland Magic, both added-money winners this year, Picov Maturity winner Firing Red Jess and Countrys Comin Bac complete the field. The Championship goes as race six.

Ten 3-year-olds by Ontario stallions complete in the Ontario Sires Stakes Derby, race five, at 350 yards. Hanover Hill Theresa, trained by Joe Tavares for the Picov Cattle Company, brings a three-race winning streak into the race and will be ridden by Cory Spataro. James Bogar of Cameron has his multiple stakes-placed black gelding Bogie Wheels in the field with Tony Phillips riding.

There is an Ontario Sires Stakes t-shirt giveaway on Wednesday with the purchase of a track program. Fans can register to attend the races by signing up at Wagering is available through and the races will be live-streamed on the Ajax Downs’ Facebook and YouTube channels.

First race post time is 12:55 p.m. Follow Ajax Downs on social media platforms for news and updates, @AjaxDowns.

The rest of the field for the 21st Alex Picov Memorial Futurity includes Magic Flare, Rapter, Night Leader, Blazin Magician, First Cold Wave, SW Snowmagicallykool and Eye Live for Candy.

Photo New Image Media

indurham's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising