Aurora Way will be facing a tall order in the Queen’s Plate, slated for July 2, as he will be making just his career second start. But, despite that lack of experience, trainer Stu Simon believes the Chiefswood Stable homebred could prove equal to the task.
“I know he’s a pretty talented horse,” said Simon, who sent out Aurora Way to win impressively in a 1 1/16 mile maiden race here June 4 with jockey Rafael Hernandez in the irons.
“We’ve had the Plate in mind for so long,” continued the trainer, who had nursed Aurora Way through juvenile issues and a starting gate phobia before finally getting him to the races. “In a perfect world we would have liked him to have had a couple more races, but we’re kind of playing the cards we were dealt.”
With Hernandez opting for Marine Stakes runner-up Channel Maker in the July 2 Canadian Classic, Simon has enlisted Julien Leparoux to pilot Aurora Way.
“Leparoux has won races for us in the States,” said Simon. “He knows the course, and I think he (Aurora Way) is an easy horse to ride.”
Leparoux indeed knows his way around the Woodbine oval, having won the 2016 Queen’s Plate aboard Sir Dudley Digges. He also won last fall’s Grade 1 Ricoh Woodbine Mile with the superstar Tepin.
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