TORONTO, ON – David Palmer’s Wet Your Whistle languished at the rear for much of the running before circling the field and finishing like a freight train to win Saturday’s $300,000 Highlander Stakes (G1) at Woodbine.
Breaking from post 7 under Alex Cintron at 7/2 odds, Wet Your Whistle was a step slow into stride and soon settled along the rail, well off the pace set by Yorkton through fractions of :22.44 and :44.87. Heading into the far turn, Cintron tipped Wet Your Whistle out and began picking off slower foes one by one.
By the time he hit the top of the stretch, Wet Your Whistle had fanned out six-wide into the middle of the lane and commenced his rally. Sliding past new leader Extravagant Kid near the 1/16 pole, Wet Your Whistle kept powering away late before winning the 6-furlong sprint over the good turf course by 1 1/2 lengths in a final time of 1:07.88.
“The last couple times, he did not get out so well,” Cintron said of Wet Your Whistle’s penchant for less-than-ideal breaks. “I just left him alone. He’s been running great; I just tried not to change anything in this race. I just tried to ride the same race I rode the last time, and I think he ran better than the last time. I was impressed with the last 1/4 of a mile. He was flying. He floated.”
Though he failed to hold onto his brief lead, Extravagant Kid managed to stave off the rest of the field to take second by a 1/2-length over White Flag, with El Tormenta and the 5/2 favorite Caribou Club each a 1/2-length behind each other. Yorkton gave way in the stretch and only just necked out Detroit Steel for sixth. Souper Smart and Tricks to Doo completed the order of finish.
Wet Your Whistle’s win was his fourth straight and first at the graded level after having taken the Get Serious Stakes at Monmouth Park last out on May 19. The 4-year-old gelded son of Stroll began his winning streak at Woodbine on December 16 and now carries a record of 11-5-0-1 with $275,513 earned.
“You know, he just learned to settle himself down just enough,” Trombetta said. “He’s a high-strung type of individual and he’s learned to run when he’s supposed to and it’s been a lot fun. He is one of those kind of horses. He can do 5 1/2 (furlongs) and probably up to a mile. I think he definitely prefers one turn, but there’s lots of options for him. You know, he will do synthetic as well, so there are lots of choices.”
Wet Your Whistle returned $9.30 to win, $4.50 to place, and $3.50 to show. Extravagant Kid brought back $4.30 to place and $3.10 to show, while White Flag paid $3.20 to show.