TORONTO, August 10 - Pink Lloyd, undefeated in four starts this campaign, stands out in Saturday's $125,000 Shepperton Stakes for Ontario-sired stock, at Woodbine.
Trained by Robert Tiller for Entourage Stable, Pink Lloyd tested deeper waters last time out and was more than able to bear it with a 2 1/4-lenght score in the Grade 3 Vigil Stakes over seven furlongs on the Woodbine main. That winning effort, a first graded score, earned a 92 Beyer Speed Figure which was a slight drop off from the three-digit figures earning in taking the Jacques Cartier (103), New Providence (102) and Achievement Stakes (106).
Pink Lloyd, leader of the sprint division in Canada, will cut back to 6 1/2 furlongs on Saturday and is listed as the 2/5 morning line favourite.
Rather than get stuck behind a wall of horses, leading rider Eurico Rosa da Silva has sent Pink Lloyd to the lead in his past two starts. However, a competitive field of eight on Saturday includes the speedy trio of Boreal Spirit, Jacks Escarpment and Aaronic Blessing.
Boreal Spirit, a five-year-old son of North Light trained by Jennifer Shafer, has chased Pink Lloyd twice this season when fourth in the New Providence and third in the Achievement. Jesse Campbell takes over from Ismael Mosqueira on the four-time winner.
Jacks Escarpment, owned by John Caulfield, will make his first start for trainer Josie Carroll after competing for Nick Gonzalez when fifth behind Pink Lloyd in the New Providence and Achievement Stakes. The dark bay son of Old Forester sports a record of 4-4-3 from 18 starts and has done his best work when racing prominently. Gary Boulanger will ride.
Aaronic Blessing, trained by Suzanne Drake, enjoyed a brilliant start to his career winning his first two starts just two weeks apart last May. The Victor's Cry grey then faltered in the Bold Ruckus Stakes but completed his 2016 on a high note with an allowance score at Fort Erie. Winless in three starts this season, Aaronic Blessing will look to turn things around on Saturday under regular pilot Alan Garcia.
San Nicola Thunder, Field of Courage, Thor's Rocket and Goodoldhockeygame complete the field.
The Shepperton is slated as Race 8 on Saturday's 11-race field. First post time is 1PM. Fans can watch and wager on all the action via HPIbet.com
FIELD FOR THE SHEPPERTON STAKES
POST / HORSE / JOCKEY / TRAINER / ML ODDS
1 / Aaronic Blessing / Alan Garcia / Suzanne Drake / 20-1
2 / San Nicola Thunder / Luis Contreras / Martin Drexler / 5-1
3 / Field of Courage / Patrick Husbands / Mark Casse / 12-1
4 /Jacks Escarpment / Gary Boulanger / Josie Carroll / 10-1
5 / Pink Lloyd / Eurico Rosa da Silva / Robert Tiller / 2-5
6 / Thor's Rocket / Rafael Hernandez / Paul Buttigieg / 20-1
7 / Goodoldhockeygame / Sheena Ryan / Robert Tiller / 20-1
8 / Boreal Spirit / Jesse Campbell / Jennifer Shafer / 15-1