Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - Spiral Stakes and Plate Trial winner We Miss Artie and Woodbine Oaks champ Lexi Lou top a list of 16 probable 3-year-old starters for this year's $1 million, 155th Queen's Plate at Woodbine on Sunday, July 6.
We Miss Artie, trained by Todd Pletcher, was bred in Ontario by Richard Lister and is owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey.
"We won the Plate with Archers Bay (1998) and we'd love to win it again," said Pletcher. "It's a great race and always a fun event to attend."
We Miss Artie, ridden by Javier Castellano, posted a half-length victory over Majestic Sunset in the Plate Trial at Woodbine on June 15 for his third win on a synthetic track and fourth overall in 10 career starts. Twenty-five Plate Trial winners have gone on to win the Plate since 1944. The latest was Big Red Mike in 2010.
"Actually he trains very well on the dirt track at Saratoga," said assistant trainer Ginny DePasquale. "He breezes well, He gallops well but obviously his preference for racing is on the Polytrack, which he's shown, since he's now three for three."
The colt won the Breeders' Futurity on Keeneland's synthetic track last Oct. 5 and won the Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park on March 22. He broke his maiden last Aug. 11 on the turf at Saratoga.
We Miss Artie will be coming into the 1 1/4-mile Queen's Plate with earnings of $699,000, $19,750 more than Lexie Lou's $649,250.
Lexie Lou, trained by Mark Casse for Gary Barber, won the Oaks on June 15 by 4 1/2 lengths with Patrick Husbands riding and is the only filly listed as a probable starter for the Queen's Plate.
The filly, previously owned and trained by John Ross, has four wins, two seconds and two thirds in 11 career starts, all at Woodbine.
"Mr. Barber has a passion for horse racing and watches every race from North America to Europe," said assistant trainer Kathryn Sullivan. "He's always on the look out for up-and-coming horses and Lexie Lou has been on everyone's radar since her juvenile campaign. He put his interest out there and Mr. Ross agreed."
Here is the full list of probable Queen's Plate starters with trainers and owners: Ami's Holiday, Josie Carroll, Ivan Dalos; Asserting Bear, Reade Baker, Bear Stables; Athenian Guard, Mike DePaulo, A & L Racing Stables; Coltimus Prime, Justin Nixon, Cabernet Racing Stables; East Side, Mark Casse, Stoneway Farm; Lexie Lou, Mark Casse, Gary Barber; Lions Bay, Jamie Attard, M. N. V. & J. Earle; Majestic Sunset, Mark Casse. John Oxley; Man o' Bear, Reade Baker, Bear Stables; Matador, Mark Casse, John Oxley; Niigon Express, Paul Attard, Chiefswood Stable; Tower of Texas, Roger Attfield, Thomas Van Meter II & Scott Dilworth; We Miss Artie, Todd Pletcher, Ken & Sarah Ramsey; Cap in Hand, Sid Attard, Tucci Stables; One Destiny, Alec Fehr, Winston Penny & Alec Fehr and Rhythm Blues, Nick Gonzalez, Hillsbrook Farm.