Lexie Lou wins $1 million Queen's Plate
TORONTO (AP) Filly Lexie Lou won the $1 million Queen's Plate on Sunday at Woodbine, beating Ami's Holiday by 1 1/2 lengths in the first leg of the Canadian Triple Crown.
The Woodbine Oaks winner, ridden by Patrick Husbands, ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:03.94 on the polytrack to give trainer Mark Casse his first Plate victory.
''I've been following the Queen's Plate since I was a little boy and so to finally win it, I just pinch myself,'' Casse said. ''I thought we'd win it sooner or later. I knew I wasn't going to give up.''
Husbands also won the Plate in 2003 when he guided Wando to the Canadian Triple Crown.
''I breezed this filly Saturday and when I pulled her up I started crying because I couldn't believe I had another Queen's Plate winner,'' Husbands said. ''On the way back to the barn I told the assistant, `Could you tell Mark `I don't think they will beat this filly.'
Lexie Lou paid $8.20, $4.50 and $3.30, Ami's Holiday returned $9.70 and $5.80, and Asserting Bear paid $6 to show in the 15-horse field.
The victory was the fifth in 12 career starts for Lexie Lou, with the $600,000 winner's share boosting her earnings past $1.2 million.
The second leg of the Canadian Triple Crown is the Prince of Wales Stakes on July 29 at Fort Erie.