The EP Taylor Stakes is one of the highlights of the fall racing season at Woodbine. A 1 ¼ mile test for fillies and mares, the EP Taylor is a Grade I event over the turf for a purse of $1,000,000. The race is run on the same day as the $1,500,000 Grade I Canadian International Stakes, making it one of the most significant race days of the season anywhere in the world.
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Betting On E.P. Taylor Stakes Horse Racing
The record time for the EP Taylor is 2:00.3, set in 2007 by Mrs. Lindsay, a multiple graded-stakes winner in France, who was ridden that day by jockey Johnny Murtagh. Although a number of fillies and mares have entered the EP Taylor twice, only one, Kitty Girl, has managed to claim two victories, way back in 1957-’58. Leading trainer for the race is Lou Cavalaris, who managed to claim the title three years in a row, from 1968-70. Jockey Sandy Hawley has also won the race three time. For 2012, the winner was Siyouma, ridden by Gerald Mosse.
First run in 1956, the race was originally called the Nettie Handicap. It was renamed in 1981 to honor the late Edward Plunket Taylor, the founder of the Jockey Club of Canada, and president of the Ontario Jockey Club from 1953-‘73. Taylor was also owner of Windfields Farm, birthplace of the legendary Northern Dancer, as well as a number of other champion Canadian thoroughbreds. An inductee into the Canadian Horse racing Hall of Fame, the world-famous turf course at Woodbine also bears his name.
Major Canadian Stakes Race leads to the Breeders’ Cup
Over the past several years, the EP Taylor Stakes has held the distinction as a “Win and You’re In” race in terms of qualifying for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, as the winner of the race gains an automatic starting position in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf event, to be held the first weekend of November at Santa Anita. With that prize added to the large purse available, the EP Taylor typically draws one of the most competitive international fields in racing.
In 2010, the EP Taylor winner, Irish-bred Miss Keller, went on to finish ninth at the Breeder’s Cup, repeating the performance of another Irish-bred winner, Folk Opera two years earlier. Canadian racing fans well remember that 2008 Breeder’s Cup for the performance of Sealy Hill. After finishing third in the EP Taylor, the Ontario-bred daughter of Point Given went into the F & M Turf as a 49-1 longshot and almost pulled off an upset, finishing second by ¾ of a length.