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Oct 16, 2009

Marsh Side back to defend International crown



Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Post positions were drawn Wednesday for Saturday's $2 million Canadian International and $1 million E.P. Taylor Stakes at Woodbine Race Course. The Canadian International and E.P. Taylor, both turf events, are both part of the "Win and You're In" program that gives the victors automatic entry into Breeders' Cup races.

Marsh Side, winner of the 2008 Canadian International, heads a field of eight grass runners for the 1 1/2 mile event. A win in the International means guaranteed entry into the $3 million Breeders' Cup Turf and the Taylor victor goes to the $2 million Filly and Mare Turf.

Owned by Robert Evans, Marsh Side has drawn post five and is the 7-2 second choice behind 5-2 favorite Jukebox Jury. Marsh Side will be ridden by Javier Castellano as both go after a second consecutive win in the race.

Trained by Neil Drysdale, Marsh Side did not start in last year's Breeders' Cup Turf after taking the International as a 29-1 longshot. The six-year-old is coning off a victory in Woodbine's Northern Dancer Turf last month.

"With eight runners, it's going to be a very tactical race," said Patrick Lawley-Wakelin, racing manager for Robert Evans. "Post five is great. It's right in the middle of all the action. I'm sure there won't be too many people trying to get on the inside of us. Our horse is in tremendous form. The ground will be to his liking. I look for an outstanding run."

Marsh Side has earned better than $1.8 million in a 23 race career with five wins. This year he was fifth in Dubai followed by a second to Gio Ponti in the Manhattan Handicap in June. In July he was sixth in the Man o' War, again behind Gio Ponti.

Jukebox Jury is coming in from Europe where has won three of six starts this year. For Saturday the three-year-old colt will start from post seven with regular rider Royston Ffrench.

The gray colt, trained by Mark Johnston, is coming off a win of Germany's Prix Von Europa. Owned by Alan Spence, Jukebox Jury has won five of 11 lifetime starts for $659,815.

"He's travelled really, really well," said Hayley Kelly, assistant to Mark Johnston. "It's his first time travelling and he ate and drank the whole way here. He's settled in really well. He seems happy enough to be here and has been working well over the track. He'll definitely appreciate the long stretch. It will suit him well."

Here is the complete field for the Canadian International in post position order: Champs Elysees, Garrett Gomez, 4-1; Allied Powers, Jim Crowley, 15-1; Quijano, Andrasch Starke, 6-1; Just as Well, Julien Leparoux, 6-1; Marsh Side, Javier Castellano, 7-2; Buccellati, William Buick, 10-1; Jukebox Jury, Royston Ffrench, 5-2 and Spice Route, Jim McAleney, 8-1.

All will carry 126 pounds, except Jukebox Jury who will carry 119 pounds.

The E.P. Taylor has also drawn a field of eight fillies and mares for the 1 1/4 mile test. The Taylor has a post-time of 5:03 P.M. (et), 37-minutes prior to the running of the International.

Trainer Michael Matz will bring in Princess Haya for owner Eileen Hartis. The four-year-old filly will start from post five with Rafael Bejarano in the saddle.

Princess Haya goes after her second straight win on the Woodbine turf course. As a 15-1 longshot she nosed out Breeders' Cup champion Forever Together in the Canadian Handicap last month. The Texas-bred filly was second in the Matchmaker to Captain's Lover at Monmouth Park in August. She is a winner of four of 13 career starts for $318,631.

Look Here ships in from Europe for the Taylor. The four-year-old filly will break from post six with Jim Crowley riding. The pair is coming off a second- place finish last month in a stakes race in England.

Trained by Ralph Beckett, Look Here won the 2008 Irish Oaks, but has not won since. She has earned $648,484 with two wins in eight lifetime starts.

Here is the field in post order for the E.P. Taylor Stakes: Treat Gently, Garrett Gomez; Rainbow View, Julien Leparoux; Lahaleeb, William Buick; Eastern Aria, Royston Ffrench, Princess Haya, Rafael Bejarano; Look Here, Jim Crowley; Roses 'n' Wine, Chantal Sutherland and Salve Germania, Javier Castellano.

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