Over the weekend, Ontario hosted the 164th edition of the prestigious King's Plate and saw Paramount Prince being crowned as the champion. However, the horse did not do it alone as it was guided by the experienced jockey, Patrick Husbands, who claimed his third King's Plate win on Sunday, August 20, 2023, at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto.
Formerly known as the Queen's Plate, the King's Plate is the first jewel from the OLG Canadian Triple Crown. It is Canada's oldest continuously run Thoroughbred race in North America which first began in 1860. Meanwhile, the other two events in the Triple Crown are the Prince of Wales at Fort Erie Race Track in Fort Erie and Breeders' Stakes again at Woodbine Racetrack.
Paramount Prince Steals the Show
In the CA$1-million King's Plate, veteran jockey Patrick Husbands stuck to his winning approach, steering Paramount Prince to a commanding victory from start to finish. Continuing their established strategy, the pair triumphed by a length and a half over stablemate Elysian Field, marking the jockey's third Plate triumph, as he remained steadfast in not altering a successful formula.
Mr. Husbands' early hunch about Paramount Prince's prowess proved spot on. The horse's distinctive gliding style proved hard to challenge, reinforcing his decision to follow the horse's lead. Trainer Mark Casse supported the veteran's strategy, recognizing that the horse's sharp starting abilities often led to victory. Elysian Field, a filly also trained by Mr. Casse, had previously claimed victory in the Woodbine Oaks with jockey Sahin Civaci aboard.
In the race's first jewel, Paramount Prince completed the 1 1/4-mile course in 2:01.93, narrowly missing the record. Mr. Casse, a 15-time top trainer, also celebrated his third Plate win. The close partnership between the trainer and the jockey is quite good as Mr. Husbands had been persuaded by Mr. Casse not to retire early. Their fruitful collaboration spans roughly 1,600 victories.
Paramount Prince paid CA$18, $9.70 and CA$5.80, while Elysian Field returned CACA $4.10. while Stanley House paid CA$4.10. Now, the next jewel of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown, the CA$400,000 Prince of Wales, a 1 3/16-mile dirt race at Fort Erie Racetrack will be hosted on September 12, 2023. The last edition of the race was captured by Gus Schickedanz
King's Plate Highlights
Last year, the race was still branded as the Queen's Plate, spectators at the track and at home saw the filly Moira dominate the event and emerge victorious. With help from Rafael Hernandez as a jockey, the horse completed a record-breaking win for the historic event at 2:01.48. She also delivered the first Plate win out of six attempts for trainer Kevin Attard.
The King's Plate is one of the most anticipated horse racing events in all of Canada and North America and it brings plenty of wagering volume. For instance, in 2021 Woodbine Entertainment reported that race's card managed to generate over CA$16.1 million in handle. Out of the total volume CA$3.5 has been accumulated by The Queen's Plate.
Source: Ralph, Dan “Paramount Prince captures 164th running of King's Plate in Toronto” CBC Sports, August 20, 2023