Infinite Patience & Capilano Canyon Win $75,000 Stakes
Vancouver, B.C. (Oct. 14/19) –Thanksgiving weekend could easily have been mistaken for a Father’s Day celebration Sunday and Monday afternoons at Hastings Racecourse.
When Jose Asencio rode Capilano Canyon to victory in the $75,000 Ascot Graduation Monday, the first person on the scene in the winner’s circle was his dad, Gabriel, the retired jockey who now gallops horses at Hastings.
Once the high-fives and hugs subsided, Hall of Fame trainer and part-owner of Capilano Canyon, Dave Forster, was joined by his son Drew who hosts the post-race interviews for the Hastings simulcast network televised at racetracks throughout North America.
Sunday the exceptionally-talented two-year-old filly Infinite Patience scored her fifth consecutive career win in the $75,000 Fantasy. Part-owner Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was otherwise occupied with his Edmonton Oilers teammates in Chicago preparing for their NHL game against the Blackhawks but he watched on his iPhone in the Windy City as his dad Roger represented him in the winner’s circle alongside co-owner Bill DeCoursey, trainer Barbara Heads and regular rider Antonio Reyes.
It marked the official conclusion of the 35 nominated stake race schedule at Hastings as the 51-day meet swings into its final two weekends Oct. 19-20 and Oct. 26-27.
For Asencio, his ride aboard Capilano Canyon Monday was his second stakes victory of the year and each time Gabriel was awaiting his arrival in the winner’s circle just as he waited by his son’s bedside for 11 consecutive days and nights in June, 2017 when Jose’s career was in jeopardy. He suffered a fractured vertebrae in his spine, broken tibia bone in his leg and underwent a series of surgeries at Vancouver General Hospital.
Capilano Canyon completed the 1 1/16-mile Ascot run Monday in 1:45.41, overtaking co-favourite Baktura in the closing stages and winning by a comfortable two-and-a-half lengths.
It was a different story for Infinite Patience on Sunday when she established a Fantasy record final time of 1:44.16 winning by 4 ¼ lengths as the 1-9 favourite in the four-horse feature that did not offer place or show wagering. Reyes, who bolted into first place in the Leading Jockey standings with three wins on the weekend, has been aboard Infinite Patience for all five of her victories.
Reyes now has 52 wins followed by Richard Hamel (51), Enrique Gonzalez (49) and Amadeo Perez (48). Perez stole Sunday’s show by hitting the winner’s circle five times before heading to Century Downs for Mark Cloutier mounts Monday in the $100,000 Harvest Plate and $50,000 Lynn Chouinard Founders Distaff, finishing out of the money on both Under Par and Coulterberry.
Hastings Racecourse received some unexpected national television coverage Monday night on Sportsnet One during the second intermission of the Oilers-Blackhawks game when host Gene Principe interviewed Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the conversation led to Ryan’s interest in horse racing. A beaming Nugent-Hopkins talked about Infinite Patience winning Sunday’s Fantasy Stakes and several still photos popped onto the screen.
Live racing resumes Saturday and Sunday at Hastings with the regular 1:50 p.m. starts.
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