Can Queenston winner Kaukokaipuu take his connections to a place they’ve never been?

Can Queenston winner Kaukokaipuu take his connections to a place they’ve never been?

TORONTO, June 11, 2023 – Kaukokaipuu rallied impressively to take the $125,000 Queenston Stakes, Sunday afternoon at Woodbine.

Fresh off a 9 ¼-length maiden-breaking win at seven panels on May 20, Kaukokaipuu (a Finnish term meaning ‘wanderlust’) was equally impressive in his first stakes test, powering by a pair of rivals late to win the seven-furlong feature for 3-year-olds foaled in Canada, and a key race on the road to the King’s Plate (August 20).

With Rico Walcott in the irons, the son of Mr Speaker broke alertly and was joined quickly by Paramount Prince and Poulin in O T. It was Paramount Prince who claimed a narrow lead and took his 11 rivals through an opening quarter reached in :23.42. The trio continued to slug it out through a half in :46.44, with Poulin in O T holding a head advantage as the frontrunners navigated the turn for home.

Down the lane, it was Paramount Prince who emerged on top, hounded by a game Poulin in O T, as Walcott found himself hemmed in and fifth at the stretch call. With the finish line looming, Walcott and Kaukokaipuu finally found daylight and began to reel in their rivals, getting up to post a 1 ¼-length win in a time of 1:23.55. Paramount Prince finished a head in front of Poulin in O T for second. One Bay Hemingway was fourth.

“I leave the gates not bad, but Patrick’s (jockey, Husbands) horse (Paramount Prince) left pretty sharp too and he was right next to me. The horse kind of came over to the rail, so then I was behind him. I was kind of boxed in and I had to wait and wait and wait until the head of the lane and there was still nowhere to go when I straightened up. Halfway down the stretch, I pulled out and he kicked on again and I kept riding him to the pole.”

A champion rider and multiple Sovereign Award finalist, Walcott, who won several riding titles in Western Canada, is hoping the Queenston victory will lead to even bigger things at the Toronto oval. ​

“It feels really good to get started and get going here,” said Walcott, who celebrated his first Woodbine stakes win. “I just want to get a chance to get a break so I can ride. I do my best and I try hard for everybody I ride for. I will keep doing it until the season is over.”

The Queenston also represented the first stakes victory for trainer Tedston Holder in just his fourth stakes appearance.

“First, I would like to dedicate this race to (trainer) Ricky Griffith, who has paved the way for us to be here. He (Kaukokaipuu) had a good winter. We stopped on him at the end of September, early October, and got him down to Florida, so he had a really good winter. He matured a lot and grew.”

As for Kaukokaipuu being able to stretch out and handle the mile and a quarter King’s Plate distance, Holder will take a wait and see approach.

“If he does, it will be exciting to see.” ​

Owned by Culpepper Island Syndicate and bred by Sean Fitzhenry, Kaukokaipuu is now 2-6-0 from 10 starts. The grey was a $10,000 (U.S.) purchase at the 2021 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Fall Yearling Sale.

He paid $15.50 for the win.

Hey Cue was fifth, followed by Cool Kiss, One for Chap, Philip My Dear, Gran Spirited, Keen Flatter, Opposites Attract and Moon Landing. True Temper was scratched.

Chris Lomon, Woodbine Communications / @WoodbineComms

Grace Martin
Grace Martin Communications Specialist, Woodbine Entertainment


Horse Racing - TB
About Woodbine Entertainment

Woodbine Entertainment is the largest horse racing operator in Canada, with Thoroughbred horse racing at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, and Standardbred horse racing at Woodbine Mohawk Park in Milton. Woodbine Entertaiment also owns and operates HPIbet, Canada’s only betting platform dedicated to horse racing. Woodbine and Mohawk Park are host to several world-class racing events including The King’s Plate, three Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series races, and the Pepsi North America Cup. Run without share capital, Woodbine Entertainment has a mandate to financially invest all profit back into the horse racing industry and the 25,000 jobs it supports across Ontario.   

Woodbine Entertainment
555 Rexdale Blvd. Toronto, Ontario.