Santa Mon­ica tops Brown trio

Daily Racing Form National Digital Edition - - Front Page - By Ron Gierkink Fol­low Ron Gierkink on Twit­ter @DRFGierkink

ETOBICOKE, On­tario – Trainer Chad Brown will be hold­ing a strong hand in Satur­day’s Grade 1, $500,000 E.P. Tay­lor Stakes when he sends out Santa Mon­ica, El­y­sea’s World, and Pol­lara in the pres­ti­gious 1 1/4-mile turf route at Wood­bine.

The English im­port Santa Mon­ica is re­turn­ing to the scene of her most impressive tri­umph, a come-from-be­hind tally over sta­ble­mate In­flex­i­bil­ity in the Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes in the swel­ter­ing heat of the Queen’s Plate card in June.

Jockey Jose Or­tiz was thrilled with Santa Mon­ica’s per­for­mance in the 10-fur­long Dance Smartly, and the reign­ing Eclipse Award win­ner is back in town for the mount.

“She loves the dis­tance, and is in great hands with Chad Brown,” Or­tiz said. “I’ve liked this filly from the first time I rode her at Keeneland, but I feel her best race to date was at Wood­bine, so I’m ex­cited to ride her in the E.P. Tay­lor. She loved the course the last time she won here.”

Santa Mon­ica has started just once since the June 30 Dance Smartly. On Sept. 1, she was a stalk­ing sec­ond in the Grade 2 Glens Falls at Saratoga af­ter front-run­ning win­ner Lady Mont­dore set dawdling frac­tions.

A field of nine fil­lies and mares was drawn for the Tay­lor, which goes as race 10 on the Cana­dian In­ter­na­tional card.

KEY CON­TENDERS

Santa Mon­ica, by Master­crafts­man Last 3 Bey­ers: 89-100-93

◗ Nei­ther Brown nor Or­tiz has won the Tay­lor. Or­tiz was vic­to­ri­ous on Os­car Per­for­mance in the Grade 1 Wood­bine Mile in Septem­ber.

El­y­sea’s World, by Champs El­y­sees Last 3 Bey­ers: 94-96-86

◗ The daugh­ter of a Cana­dian In­ter­na­tional win­ner, she’s ex­it­ing back-to-back Grade 3 scores in the Vi­o­let and Match­maker at Mon­mouth.

Pol­lara, by Camelot NA-NA-NA

◗ A Group 3 win­ner in France, the 3-year-old is re­turn­ing from a sum­mer break af­ter work­ing reg­u­larly at Bel­mont. Brown has solid num­bers with new ac­qui­si­tions, and is putting this one on Lasix. Golden Le­gend, by Doc­tor Dino NA-NA-NA

◗ She beat the boys last time in a Group 3 event in France. As­sis­tant trainer Benoit Pey­rot said she has set­tled into Wood­bine nicely af­ter trav­el­ing has­sle-free.

“I think she has a good chance,” Pey­rot said. “She prefers soft ground, but she han­dles ev­ery­thing.”

Star­ship Ju­bilee, by Indy Wind Last 3 Bey­ers: 104-93-85

◗ Af­ter a slow start to the meet, last year’s Cana­dian cham­pion turf fe­male romped in an Aug. 6 op­tional starter, and then won the Grade 2 Cana­dian on Sept. 15.

“I made a few mis­takes with her early this year,” trainer Kevin At­tard said.

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