Labeeb Wins $750,000 Woodbine Mile
TORONTO (AP) _ Labeeb beat Jim and Tonic by a head to win the second running of the $750,000 Woodbine Mile Sunday on a hot, muggy afternoon at Woodbine race track.
Labeeb and Jim and Tonic broke away from the pack in mid-stretch to make it a two-horse race. The American-bred Labeeb pulled away slightly from the French-bred horse to finish in 1:33 on a firm turf to top the 11-horse field, which featured four American-bred competitors, four from Canada and three from Europe.
Labeeb captured the $450,000 winner’s prize and paid $6.60, $5.10 and $4.10. Jim and Tonic paid $8 and $6. French-bred Poteen was third, paying $10.80.
American-bred Elusive Quality, the 6-5 pre-race favorite who ran a world-record time of 1:31 3-5 in his last start July 4 at Belmont, was fourth.
The mood around the track was somber following the death earlier in the day of filly Cotton Carnival, who earned a Sovereign Award last year as a top Canadian 3-year-old. Cotton Carnival suffered a fatal heart attack after the $52,000 Wilderness Song Stakes.
``She finished the race, the jockey pulled her up quickly, it looks as if she might have had a heat stroke,″ track veterinarian Dr. John McNie said. ``It became apparent quickly that it was a heart attack, or something similar cardiovascular wise. The horse expired on her own.″
Last year, Cotton Carnival won four of nine starts to earn $241,906. In 1996, she had two wins and placed three times in seven races, earning $90,345.