Trainer Bob McIntosh will send his Ohio-bred star Only Take Cash from the rail into her first major Grand Circuit foray, the $376,000 final of the Elegantimage Stakes, this Saturday (Sept. 14) at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
A daughter of Cash Hall bred and owned by Bob McIntosh Stables Inc. and co-owned by Dave Boyle and Mardon Stables, Only Take Cash has raced almost exclusively on the Ohio Sires Stakes (OHSS) circuit. With 14 wins from 17 starts, Only Take Cash has accrued nearly $600,000 in earnings and made Bob McIntosh the third trainer in harness racing history to earn over $100 million in purses.
“I didn’t realize I was only the third guy to do that so that made it a little extra special,” McIntosh said. “It feels great.”
Only Take Cash made her Grand Circuit debut on August 23 when she won an $83,123 division of the Casual Breeze at Woodbine Mohawk Park. McIntosh staked her lightly due to her broodmare, Armbro Affair, not producing high-earning offspring.
“This filly trained [well] all spring,” McIntosh said, “but I thought ‘Oh, she’s just a sires stakes filly in Ohio, that’ll be enough.’ But then after she showed her stuff last year in Ohio, I did put her in a few more things this year. She had to prove herself to me first.”
Only Take Cash dominated the OHSS as a two-year-old and only lost on one occasion. She won the $275,000 championship by over five lengths and maintained her top-level form to defend her title in the $300,000 championship this year.
“It was pretty evident about halfway through last year that she was a little special,” McIntosh said. “She’s the ultimate professional filly. She has no wasted motion or gait—you can leave with her, take her back, do anything you want; she’s got the most efficient gait of any trotter I’ve ever trained. She’s not real big, but she’s compact and just special.”
Trevor Henry will pilot Only Take Cash from Post 1 on Saturday. After many outside draws in OHSS prelims, McIntosh joked that he “was starting to get a little suspicious.” But – while drawing well as the 3-1 second choice on the morning line — Only Take Cash will face her toughest competition to date. Hambletonian Oaks winner When Dovescry is set to start from Post 3 on Saturday, while Zweig Memorial winner The Ice Dutchess will line up in Post 9. Evident Beauty has drawn Post 10.
When asked if she can compete with the top fillies, McIntosh said, “That’s the million-dollar question, I guess. I’ll say this: she won’t embarrass herself. Anything this filly does is not going to shock me. I think we can make a little noise and get a good paycheque out of it. And to get it all that would be extra nice. Hopefully we snag a prize. If we snag the big one, there’ll be a lot of celebrating. It’ll be a long night.”
The Elegantimage final, which has been carded as Race 10, is the companion feature to Saturday’s headlining event, the $605,000 Canadian Trotting Classic. Frosh trotting fillies will also compete in the $405,000 final of the Peaceful Way Stakes, while the two-year-old trotting colts will contest the $370,000 final of the William Wellwood Memorial. The 12-race program also features two eliminations for the Shes A Great Lady and two eliminations for the Metro Pace. Saturday’s card will get underway with a first-race post time of 7:30 p.m. (EDT).
To view the harness racing entries for Saturday at Mohawk, click the following link: Saturday Entries – Woodbine Mohawk Park.