ETOBICOKE, Ontario -- Bullards Alley, the second-longest shot on the board at 42-1, relished the soft turf and crushed the opposition in Sunday's $800,800 Canadian International at Woodbine, scoring by a record margin of 10 3/4 lengths under Eurico Da Silva.
Trained by Tim Glyshaw, Bullards Alley raced in fourth until the far turn in the 12-furlong event as Messi set moderate fractions. Bullards Alley made a three-wide bid to the lead entering the stretch and then drew off abruptly to prevail in 2:34.37.
Oscar Nominated, who left Bullards Alley behind him in sixth when taking the Sept. 9 Kentucky Turf Cup, rallied for second. Flamboyant held off the closing favorite, Idaho, for third. Last year's International winner, Erupt, wound up fifth and was followed by Chemical Charge, Enterprising, Postulation, Messi, and Johnny Bear.
Da Silva, who won the Grade 3 Ontario Derby earlier on the card on Tiz a Slam, was winning his first Canadian International on his first time riding Bullards Alley.
"I liked him. He'd been running well," Da Silva said. "I saw he could handle the soft turf. I had a lot of faith in him, and I had more faith when I got on him. I asked the trainer if I could warm him up, and when I did, he gave me the best feeling ever, the same as when I warmed up Tiz a Slam. On the second turn, I thought he had a great chance. Turning for home, I asked him, and he took off from there, and it was over. He [rebroke] from there."
It was the first Grade 1 victory for Kentucky-based Glyshaw, who said Bullards Alley had excuses during his losing streak leading up to the International, which included a neck loss in the Grade 3 Singspiel here July 2.
"Up here, he barely got beat; that's one of the reasons we brought him back because he seems to like this course a lot," Glyshaw said. "At Arlington, he had a horse make a right-hand turn in front of him. He was going to be competitive in that race, and Kentucky Downs in the last race, the turf was just too hard for him. He ran the best race of his life in a graded stakes at Churchill last year on a yielding turf course, so we knew he liked it, but so did the Europeans and a lot of others in the field."
Bullards Alley ($87.90) earned $480,000 for owners Wayne Spalding and Faron McCubbins, boosting the son of Flower Alley's bankroll to $942,698.