Ventura makes History at Woodbine
Each year, the Woodbine Mile is held at the Woodbine Racecourse in Canada, and is one of the prestigious Grade 1 horse racing events of the year. It is for horses that are three years old and older and has a purse amount of $1 million. This year, the Woodbine Mile was held on Sunday, 20 September 2009. To everyone’s surprise, the race that has always been dominated by the male contenders, took an unexpected turn as the filly, Ventura, crossed the finish line in first position and made Woodbine Mile history.
Ventura definitely entered the starting gates with a point to prove. After settling for second position in last years event, this fiery filly was not going to settle for second position two years running. Ridden by the legendary Garrett Gomez, he commented that Ventura was extremely fresh before the race, giving Gomez a little battle of attitude and will, before the race, indicating to the seasoned jockey, that she was ready to get the show on the road.
The strategy for Sunday was to keep Ventura back till the last minute, and it worked wonderfully. Most spectators were a little nervous by the three-quarters pole, as Ventura was off the pace, but in the final moments of the race, Gomez directed her to the outside and the amazing filly drove past the other competitors at a tremendous speed. Only Ferneley was able to challenge her all the way to the end, but she still managed to win the Woodbine Mile by a length. With the victory, Ventura became the first filly ever, to win this event, making it a spectacular moment for all involved with her. Finishing in second position was Ferneley, followed by Sterwins, race favorite Jungle Wave and Bribon in fifth position.
The victory also gives Ventura an automatic entry into the Breeders’ Cup Mile extravaganza, but owners, Juddmonte Farms don’t foresee her running in the Filly and Mare Sprint, as Ventura won the event last year. But no matter where Ventura’s next start will be, horse racing enthusiast will be there to support this extraordinary equine athlete and champion of the 2009 Woodbine Mile.