Canadian International Stakes Betting Odds

The first major organised horse race in Canada took place in Quebec City in 1767 and the sport developed with the establishment of the Upper Canadian Turf Club 60 years later.

The beginning of the 20th Century led to a boom in horse racing’s popularity and the major races in Canada still attract worldwide attention and betting turnover.

One of those is the Canadian International Stakes, and here we look at the race in detail before giving a few suggestions when betting on it.

Canadian International Stakes

The Canadian International Stakes, or Woodbine Stakes as it is often called, was first run in 1938.

It is contested by horses aged three years and older and is run over a distance of one mile four furlongs on turf at Woodbine Racecourse in Toronto.

With a purse of over CA$600,000, it is one of the most valuable races in Canada and often attracts top international horses from around the world.

In 2020 the race wasn’t run due to the global pandemic, but a field of eight went to post in 2021, where Charlie Appleby’s UK-raider Walton Street streaked clear of his rivals to win by nearly six lengths.

Current Top 5 Favourites To Win The Canadian International Stakes

The 2021 Canadian International Stakes was run in September and won by Walton Street in the colours of Godolphin.

Owing to the race being run so recently there is currently no horse betting market available for the 2022 Canadian International Stakes.

Betting Strategy For The Canadian International Stakes

The Canadian International is a Grade One Stakes race, meaning it is not a handicap and all runners carry the same weight.

Follow European-Trained Horses

As previously mentioned, European horses have an excellent record in this race.

Nine of the last 10 winners hailed from Europe and there have been 21 European-trained winners in the history of the race.

Many of the best middle distance Flat horses are trained in Europe and their dominance may stem from the fact that Canadian and US horses are often bred for speed, but more significantly race predominantly on dirt.

The distance of the Canadian International of one mile four furlongs on turf, which gives the European raiders a significant advantage.

Horses that are often Group Two or Group Three performers in the UK or Ireland can head to the Canadian International, as it usually attracts horses that might struggle to be competitive in the Breeders’ Cup Turf.

Look Into Race Trends

Looking into trends for races like the Canadian International Stakes can give you a good idea about what is required to win them.

For example, of the last 10 winners, nine had won before at Group Three level or higher. Only Desert Encounter, when he won his first Canadian International in 2018 had not won a Group race previously.

Of those Group race winners, five had won at least a Group Two race, two had won at Group Three level and a further two had already made the breakthrough in Group One company.

This trend shows that in recent years Canadian International winners have generally been of Group Two level.

Horses that have already won a Group One race are likely to line up as short-priced favourites, while previous winners at Group Three or lower may be available to back at bigger odds.

Finding a horse that has won at a lower level but may still be progressive could be a means of finding a value bet in this historic Woodbine race.

Ground

The ground is one of the most important considerations when betting on horse racing and especially on races run on turf.

Knowing an individual horse’s ability to run to its best on a variety of different ground surfaces is essential before placing a bet.

The ground can vary from dry, quick ground usually referred to in the going description as firm, good-to-firm, or good, to rain-softened ground that could be called yielding, soft, or heavy.

In the last 10 years, the Canadian International Stakes has been run on good ground six times and on firm ground once. Only once has the ground been described as soft and twice as yielding.

That suggests the Canadian International Stakes is often run on quickish ground and so the thing to do is to look for horses that have performed to their best on that type of ground in the past.

This is something to watch out for particularly is choosing to side with a European-trained horse as ground conditions in Europe are often slower, with races run on softer ground than they would normally be in North America.

Notable Canadian International Stakes Winners

There have been many brilliant winners of the Canadian International Stakes.

Joshua Tree is the most successful horse in the history of the race, winning three times.

Remarkably he won the race for a different trainer each time, beginning for Ireland’s champion trainer Aidan O’Brien when winning by a head from Mores Wells in 2010.

After switching across the Irish Sea to Marco Botti’s Newmarket yard, Joshua Tree finished second when bidding to defend his crown in 2011 but made amends a year later.

Another stable switch, this time a matter of one hundred metres, to Ed Dunlop made no difference to his brilliant record in the race as he gained a historic third success in the hands of Ryan Moore in 2013.

Moore went on to record two further successive wins in the race, when victorious on Hillstar in 2014 and then Cannock Chase in 2015, both of who were trained by the masterful hand of Sir Michael Stoute.

Those wins made Moore the joint-most successful rider in the race, with three wins, a record that was only broken in 2021 when Frankie Dettori recorded his fourth Canadian International success on Walton Street.

In doing so he ended the hopes of a record-equalling success for David Simcock’s Desert Encounter, as he had won the two previous renewals of the race in 2018 and 2019.

On the second of those, he produced an exceptional turn of foot as he weaved through the field to get up in the shadows of the post.

European-trained horses have an excellent record in the Canadian International Stakes, so much so there has only been one North American trained winner in the last ten years – Bullards Alley.

However, he was perhaps one of the most impressive winners of the race.

Trained by Tim Glyshaw and ridden by Eurico Rosa da Silva, Bullards Alley made rapid progress racing off the home turn before powering further and further clear down the home straight, routing his rivals by 11-lengths.

Popular Horse Racing Bets

For any horse race the type of bet you place is an important consideration.

This is because every race market is different, due to the number of horses running and the odds of those horses. Knowing the best bet to place in different circumstances can improve your chance of winning.

Here are a few common horse racing bets.

Straight Bets

A bet placed on one horse in a race.

There are different types of straight bets: win, place, and each way bets.

Forecast

There are two types of forecast: a straight forecast and a reverse forecast.

With a straight forecast, you select two horses to finish first and second in a race. They must finish in the correct order to win the bet.

With a reverse forecast, the two horses can finish in any order.

Tricast

There are also straight and reverse tricasts.

A straight tricast challenges you to predict the first three horses in a race in the correct order.

A reverse tricast means your three selections can finish in any order.