Mabee Stakes (Grade 2)- $200.000 Purse
DMR- For Fillies and Mares Three Years Old and Upward
One Mile and One Eighth on the Turf
September 1, 2018
The 16th running of the Mabee Stakes takes place on Saturday, and while the field will be smaller, there is no lack of a big name in the field. The reigning BC Fillies and Mares Turf winner, Good Line, will be set to go on the rail against four others who do not have such accolades. Free Sunset, who will go to the gate for Team 7 Illusions, is the closest to her. The others are up and comers who would love to be able to say they knocked off the likes of Good Line. The BC champ will be the favorite, but as she will be looking for her first stake win of the year, she is not a given. This race will be competitive, so let’s meet the field, beginning with the champ.
#1- Good Line (Mb Stables, ridden by P Lopez)- Part of the historic BC day that Mb Stables had included a win by Good Line in the BC Fillies and Mares Turf. It was one of two Grade 1’s that she won last year. So far in 2018, Good Line has not won a major race. Her year began at FG in February in an open allowance that she did win, but since then has not found the winner’s circle. That’s one side of the coin. The other side shows her in each of those races being within a length of victory, so with just a little more luck, she could be having a big year. Races in that stretch include the Grade 1 Gamely at SA and Grade 1 Diana at SAR. In fifteen races, she has never failed to finish in the top four. She’s still on top of her game, and while she still needs to show up and run her race, she is the class of the field.
#2- All Together Now (LionKing Stables, ridden by Mario Gutierrez)- This four year old filly is a new addition to the LionKing fold, having been acquired on the 17th of August in private sales for $46.320. After taking a little bit to break her maiden, she started flashing her potential, which led her to be entered in the Grade 3 Gallorette at PIM on PRK day. The turf was soft that day, and she was not a factor. That’s still the last time she has raced, so there is layoff in play to make note of here as well. Potential is a good word for her, and she should do good things for the trainer, but beating Good Line is quite a challenge.
#3- Z Fan (Nakamura Stables, ridden by T C Baze)- This four year old is a veteran of sixteen races in her career, but only this year has she been running against top competition. A couple of ungraded stakes have been attempted in her career, but she did not hit the board in either of them. Therefore, she does not really have a big win that we can make note of here. This is her first graded stake attempt, and while the work times show that has earned the chance, the SRF figures recently are not as good as others in this field. Running against a smaller field will be good for her, but she will need to run the best race of her career.
#4- Harsh (Mb Stables, ridden by D E Centeno)- She will look for stable bragging rights if she is able to top her more well known ally, Good Line. Harsh is not just here to be part of the festivities, however, and has some solid accomplishments herself. The three year old ran in a few ungraded stakes in the winter time, but it would not be until early August where she would win one of them, earning a victory in the $100.000 Victoriana Stakes for ON-breds. Looks to be hitting her stride now, and the trainer will get a good look at how she measures up against one of his stable stars.
#5- Free Sunset (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by K J Desormeaux)- Here is the main reason Good Line cannot just show up and get a win. Free Sunset is a BC runner herself, and will enjoy a four pound weight advantage in the race due to still being a three year old. Her strong two year old season saw her run second in the Spinaway at SAR last year, and this year’s version of the same race runs today as well. She got the to BC Juvenile Fillies last year and earned a check, placing fourth. This year she did not have a big win until her most recent race, the Grade 3 Matchmaker at MTH. Free Sunset is at her best right now, and this will be a good battle.