TORONTO, ON – Dismissed at odds of 11-1, Chiefswood Stable’s homebred Tiz a Slam shot to the front and never looked back, scoring big on Canada Day in Sunday’s Grade 3, $125,000 Dominion Day Stakes at Woodbine.
Breaking from the outside post 7 under Steven Bahen, Tiz a Slam rode in the two-path as he passed the grandstand for the first time, then cleared Dragon Bay to his inside and crossed over to the rail as he entered the clubhouse turn. Settling comfortably, Tiz a Slam was allowed to post uncontested splits of :25.51, :50.84, and 1:15.37. Bahen remained unmoved entering the far turn until the 3-2 favorite Melmich made a strong bid along his outside. For a moment, Melmich appeared unstoppable while full of run, but Tiz a Slam gamely dug in and refused to yield. The pair of Ontario-breds battled the length of the stretch, giving those in attendance quite the thrill on Canada’s birthday. In the final 1/16 of a mile, Tiz a Slam began drawing off, and the Roger Attfield trainee hit the wire with a 1 1/4-length advantage in a final time of 2:03.11 for the 1 1/4-mile event over the main track’s synthetic surface.
“I know we were going pretty slow and he was tugging me the whole way,” Bahen said. “He got some good fractions and that’s why he finished up so strong. Roger had him ready today and it was fantastic.”
Though his bid for the win came up short, Melmich remained 2 lengths clear in second, with the winner’s stablemate Are You Kidding Me necking out Gigantic Breeze for third. Black Sea headed Sir Dudley Digges for fifth, while Dragon Bay faded to complete the order of finish.
Tiz a Slam’s win was his first since taking the Grade 3 Ontario Derby here last October but had been training sharply leading up to the Dominion Day, posting two bullets over 5 furlongs in the past three weeks. With the victory, the 4-year-old son of Tiznow improved his record to 17-5-2-1 with career earnings of $560,142.
“This horse, he actually trained super into this race,” Attfield said. “He’s a big, long-striding horse, and he likes just to gallop. The last few races, we’ve been wide in some of those races because you can’t check him. He’s got to keep striding. He trained like he could win the race if he got his trip and he dug in well down the lane, which I was clearly pleased to see. He’s a nice horse.”
Tiz a Slam returned $25 to win, $8.40 to place, and $4.40 to show. Melmich brought back $3.20 to place and $2.50 to show, while Are You Kidding Me paid $2.50 to show.