The Canterbury Park stable area opened to horses earlier this week. The steady arrival of equine athletes is underway with 100 head on grounds now per stall superintendent Andrew Vold. “I expect we will have north of 1,500 horses,” Vold said. The main track will open Monday for training and that will lead to an increased volume of horses as they prepare for the May 18 opener.
Vold reports that Kentucky Derby winning trainer Bennie Woolley, Jr. will have 22 horses in training here this summer. Justin Evans, once a top five trainer at Canterbury, returns for the first time since 2008. Robertino Diodoro, whose starts dropped from an average of four per day in 2019 to just under 1.5 in 2020, will have a full barn for the coming 65-day season which means a lot of activity from a high-percentage stable. Mac Robertson, of course, will also fill a barn as will the 2020 leading trainer Joel Berndt.
Trainer Valorie Lund will have around 43 horses. “Everything that is not turned out will be in the barn at Canterbury,” she said while hauling a trailer-full toward Shakopee. This is her second trip from Kentucky, with her first on Monday. She will head from here to Oaklawn Thursday morning. Mr. Jagermeister, her stakes-winning Minnesota bred, will race there Friday. “I’ll finish that up and head [to Shakopee] Monday.”
Lund’s plan with Mr. Jagermeister is to enter in the May 19 Minnesota bred stake, the $50,000 10,000 Lakes.
Behind Lund in the trailer she is pulling north is 3-year-old Bodeheimer, recent second-place finisher in the $150,000 William Walker Stakes. The colt lost a heartbreaker, setting the pace over a turf course listed as good, only to lose by a neck in the last strides. Lund will consider her options moving forward. She has Bodenheimer nominated to the Golden Circle to be run in a couple of weeks at Prairie Meadows. He won over that surface last year. Perhaps race fans will see him in the one mile Mystic Lake Derby at Canterbury. “He might be mature enough this year to do that,” Lund said.