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Neepawa gives Casse a Canadian Triple Crown sweep

By Alex Campbell ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Trainer Mark Casse added another accomplishment to his Canadian racing résumé Saturday when Neepawa won the $400,000 Breeders’ Stakes, the third and final jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown, over 1 1/2 miles on the Woodbine turf. Casse swept all three legs of the Canadian Triple Crown this year – winning the Queen’s Plate and Prince of Wales Stakes with Wonder Gadot, and the Breeders’ Stakes with Neepawa. Neepawa earned his first stakes victory in the Breeders’ Stakes, taking the field gate to wire...

‘Obvious Choice’: Irad Ortiz To Be Named On Wonder Gadot In Travers

By: NYRA Press Office Trainer Mark Casse reported Monday morning that Saratoga Race Course's current meet leading rider Irad Ortiz, Jr. will have the mount aboard Gary Barber's Wonder Gadot, set to become the first filly since 1979 to contest the Grade 1, $1.25 million Runhappy Travers on Saturday. Ortiz was previously committed to ride Hofburg in the Mid-Summer Derby, but the Curlin winner was withdrawn from the race on Sunday after missing a scheduled breeze due to fever. “Irad is as good as they come,” said Casse. “He's having an...

Casse Trio Rounding Into Form Ahead Of Queen’s Plate

By: Woodbine Communications Office Hall of Fame trainer Mark Casse will saddle a trio of starters in Saturday's $1-million Queen's Plate including Telekinesis, Wonder Gadot and Neepawa. Telekinesis, the Winterbook favourite for the 1 1/4-mile Queen's Plate, was bred by William D. Graham and purchased for $470,000 as a weanling at the 2015 Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale. The Ghostzapper-Intentional Cry colt's maternal grand dam is Gold Mover, a six-time graded stakes winner. Two of the last three Queen's Plate winners are offspring of Ghostzapper: Holy Helena (2017) and Shaman...

Casse likely to have three in Queen’s Plate

By Alex Campbell Trainer Mark Casse said both Plate Trial Stakes winner Telekinesis and Woodbine Oaks runner-up Wonder Gadot emerged from their Saturday starts in good order and are likely to run in the $1 million Queen’s Plate on June 30. Casse could have as many as three in the Queen’s Plate, as Neepawa is also likely to run. Neepawa finished a troubled third in an allowance race over 1 1/16 miles here on May 20. He breezed five furlongs in 59 seconds Saturday morning on Tapeta. “Neepawa worked exceptionally well,...

Queen’s Plate: Casse barn loaded

By Alex Campbell ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Trainer Mark Casse looks to have a strong contingent heading toward the 159th running of the $1 million Queen’s Plate for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds on June 30 at Woodbine. Casse has four horses nominated to the first jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown, including the top two horses on the first Daily Racing FormQueen’s Plate Watch list of 2018, Telekinesis and Wonder Gadot. Casse also has Neepawa and Kentucky Derby 13th-place finisher Flameaway nominated to the Queen’s Plate. However, Flameaway will instead be pointed...

‘Team Effort’: Casse Leading Woodbine Trainers As Meet Winds Down

by Woodbine Communications Office Mark Casse, Woodbine's leading trainer for more than a decade, has put together another chart-topping campaign at the 2017 Thoroughbred meet and has just over one week left to seal the deal. Casse heads into this weekend's stakes action atop the trainer standings in all categories at Woodbine, leading for stakes (17), overall wins (92), and earnings ($6.59 million). The veteran trainer will be looking to wrap up his 11th straight training title at the Toronto track (12th overall), but it's not a done deal...

World Approval All Class in Breeders’ Cup Mile Win

By: Jeremy Balan Live Oak Plantation's World Approval found his sweet spot at a mile on the grass. Live Oak Plantation's homebred World Approval has found his sweet spot. It took trainer Mark Casse a while—21 starts, to be exact—to get the Northern Afleet gelding at a mile on grass, but that move has put the gray into another stratosphere. With a 1 1/4-length score in the Breeders' Cup Mile (G1T) Nov. 4, ahead of runner-up Lancaster Bomber, World Approval now has three straight top-level wins at the distance. His previous two...

Norman Casse Prepares to Walk His Own Path

By: Alicia Wincze Hughes Son of Mark Casse will depart his father's operation, open his own stable in 2018. The white Jeep Cherokee is on one of its final runs for the morning. It rolls up to a Churchill Downs backstretch security gate, and the driver signals to the guard that he's coming through again. It winds down the side of the Longfield Avenue parking lot before coming to a stop near the stairs leading to the clubhouse boxes, where Norman Casse hops out from behind the wheel and...

Thoroughbred trainer, wife, son, share time with Elizabeth II

By Carlos E. Medina Thoroughbred trainer Mark Casse is always generous to the press. It was no different when Tepin won the 2016 Queen Anne Stakes at the Royal Ascot race meet in England. Dutiful and patient, he answered questions about the race from the international media. After the gaggle, Casse asked, “When do we meet the queen?” “They said, ‘You missed it,’” he recalled recently. One of the biggest wins of his career, and he missed meeting Queen Elizabeth II. “It was my biggest regret,” Casse said. This year, Casse entered La...

Will Classic Empire prove to be Mark Casse’s work of genius?

By: Bob Ehalt Will Classic Empire prove to be Mark Casse’s work of genius? Bringing home the champion: Mark Casse with Classic Empire and Julien Leparoux after the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile last November. Photo: Zoe Metz/Eclipse Sportswire/Breeders’ Cup A little more than a week ago, Mark Casse was among the seven nominees who failed to gain the necessary votes to enter Thoroughbred racing’s Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs, New York. Now, on the first Saturday in May, the 56-year-old Casse will get a chance to prove the voters wrong. Casse, who...