A day full of stakes upsets at Woodbine culminated with Erupt’s 12-1 stunner in the $1 million Pattison Canadian International Stakes on Sunday.
Flaxman Holdings’ Erupt raced in fourth behind a soft pace in the backstretch of the 1 1/2-mile turf test, and then unleashed a furious turn of foot in the stretch to burst away from his rivals and win comfortably by a length under jockey Stephane Pasquier.
“I was a bit worried about my stall number (post 8), but he started well,” Pasquier said. “We took good position right behind the leader and the race was perfect today. I feel that I had a lot of gas, actually. It went easily.”
The 4-year-old bay Dubawi colt came into the Canadian International winless in four 2016 starts for trainer Francis-Henri Graffard, but won four out of seven starts in 2015, including the Group 1 Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris.
“We won a group I in France at 3-years-old, but it was a difficult start to this year,” Pasquier said. “Today he came back very easily and I'm very happy to have found my horse again.”
Erupt finished 1 1/2 miles in 2:30.87. Dartmouth, another European shipper who is owned by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, settled for second ahead of U.S.-based Wake Forest and The Pizza Man. Highly-touted Idaho, owned by Coolmore and trained by Aidan O’Brien, finished a disappointing fifth as the 7-to-5 favorite.
Irish-bred Erupt improved to five wins from 12 starts and boosted his earnings to over $1.25 million.– Jeremy Balan