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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Calder Trophy Winner Draws Field

The NHL's Rookie of the Year and most famous living South Buffalonian (RIP Tim Russert) drew the field for Sunday's $500K Prince of Wales Stakes (G1) at Fort Erie Race Track across the border from downtown Buffalo. Patrick Kane, rookie phenom for the Chicago Blackhawks and Calder Trophy winner, was present today to draw the eight post positions for the second leg of Canada's triple crown. Kane led all rookies scoring 72 points, including 21 goals in his initial professional campaign, lifting Chi-town's hopes for future success and bringing the hockey throngs back to the United Center. This is the biggest race held at beautiful Fort Erie, run at a mile and 3/16ths.

Not Bourbon, who will be running on dirt for the first time, drew the 7 post and was made the 7-5 favorite by oddsmaker Jerry Davis. He is trained by the popular Roger Attfield, who last won this race in 2005 with Ablo, and he has won it four times in his career. The Buffalo News' beat racing reporter Bob Summers was on hand and has a nifty video here showing the draw live. "Pletcher's white horse" drew the 4 hole and was made the 2-1 second choice. That white horse being Harlem Rocker, the Withers winner over J Be K (winner of his last two stakes). Their last head to head meeting, Not Bourbon trounced the Rocker in the Plate Trial at Woodbine, in his first effort on sythetics, maybe he'll get to return the favor in the POW on Sunday. The talented Eibar Coa will be in town (will Todd come east?) to ride the Rocker in the big race. Pletcher won his only POW in 1998 with Archers Bay. The last Canadian Triple Crown was won in 2003 by Wando, who was the 7th winner since it's inauguration in 1959.

For even more exciting Prince of Wales news, check out the TBA's two Canadian bloggers, Cangamble and Jen's Thorough Blog where you can find all of the post positions, morning line odds and the Canadian twist on the race. We'll try and handicap here closer to the weekend and keep you posted on the Western New York angle and press it receives on this side of the border.



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