Matron is Wide Open

The Matron (Grade 3)- $150.000 Purse
BEL- For Fillies Two Years Old
Six Furlongs on the Turf
October 8, 2018

Great racing does not stop on Sunday, as the extended weekend means quality racing on Monday as well. A big race for two year old fillies is one of them, as the 15th running of the Grade 3 Matron, which is six furlongs on the grass, will be run. The race initially debuted as a grade 1 back in 2003, and was held at a mile, but as time went by, the distance was cut to seven, and then six furlongs. With that, the race classification dropped, and the purse would follow suit. This hasn’t kept the race from filling to capacity, as a field of twelve gets to see how they stack up against one another here. In terms of making a pick for this race, you might be better off putting numbers into a hat and drawing them. It’s a very evenly matched field with talent and potential but no true standout just yet. Let’s take a look at them!

#1- Kauai (Gdp Inc, ridden by J Bravo)- Makes her debut for the trainer after being claimed from Night Rider Stables for just $18.000. That race saw a lot of claiming action, and Kauai looked sharp in it. This may be one that Night Rider regrets letting get away. Two wins in three starts, and there will be more in her future.

#2- Grand Gran (Drabfantasy, ridden by J L Ortiz)- She is a maiden, and has only run once. There is not much to speak of from that effort, but she has had two and a half months to improve, and for her to be placed here, you have to think that she has been making steady progress.

#3- Meimadeline (Blushing Meadows, ridden by Ro Maragh)- The Commanding filly has won two of three races thus far, and the most recent victory was at the stake level. In late August, she was victorious in the $100.000 Catch A Glimpse Stakes at WO on soft turf, with Risque One being a filly she defeated in that.  I like that she was able to win that stake, and in an otherwise close field, that may be what puts her over the top here.  She is my pick to win.

#4- Innocent Approach (Mb Stables, ridden by L Saez)- After winning her debut race in April, the trainer took on the $100.000 Bolton Landing with her at SAR in August, but her effort was a little flat, and probably just needed more distance. Recent works are showing improvement, so add that with a little more distance here, and she should be fine.

#5- Game Girl (Royalty Racing, ridden by E Cancel)- The most experienced member of the field, as she will make her sixth start. Her last race finally saw her break her maiden, which came on the dirt. She did run in a couple turf events, and was solid in them. Not much to go by in terms of public works with her so it is tough to get a handle on how she may fare here.

#6- City Of Soul (John Henry, ridden by J R Velazquez)- Started her career with a couple of wins, and that would include the $125.000 Shady Well Stakes up at WO for ON-breds. That is on the main track, as was her next race, the Grade 2 Pocahontas at CD, where she finished in the middle of the field. She will made her turf debut here.

#7- Levi Sneaky (Estero Farms, ridden by M Franco)- Broke her maiden on the Fourth of July at ELP, which was her third career start. After that, it was off to the $100.000 Bolton Landing, where she would run third, defeating Innocent Approach in the process. Note that she was length behind Innocent Approach at the top of the stretch, and beat her by a length, so if we’re going to say that one just needed a little more distance, then it definitely also applies to Levi Sneaky.

#8- Ninovan (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by N Juarez)- In her second career start, she won on the grass at WO. That’s been the only time she has been on the turf, and perhaps not coincidentally, the only race she has won. The trainer put her on the main track for a couple of tough races, including the Grade 1 Debutante at DMR, and each resulted in the only time the trainer doesn’t want to see a “7″.

#9- Risque One (D J C Racing Stables, ridden by J J Castellano)- A winner of one of her four career starts, Risque One battled it out with Meimadeline at the Catch A Glimpse Stakes, and while that one would win, Risque One was only fourth. That was run on soft turf, so the tables can certainly be turned if we stay dry here. She seems to be working well.

#10- La Marine Ancienne (Greeko Holdem, ridden by I Ortiz Jr)- So far in her career, La Marine Ancienne thinks every race ends with a winners circle trip, as she is a perfect three-for-three. That said, she has not always taken on the toughest competition. Her last race was a step forward, into a $50.000 claimer at SAR, where Greeko Holdem made the claim to get her. When you’re undefeated, you have to try a race like this. She’s done everything asked of her so far.

#11- Yummy Dragon (Drabfantasy, ridden by J Rosario)- The second of two runners in the field for the trainer, and the only one that has a win to her name. Yummy Dragon won her debut at LS, but then struggled mightily in her only other race, the $75.000 La Senorita, where she paced the field before collapsing on soft turf. Works are good, so she probably just needs it dry.

#12- Retained (Mb Stables, ridden by J Alvarado)- Her last two races have been a pair of $50.000 CA-bred maiden claimers, but the trainer was able to retain Retained, and now has her going up graded company after breaking her maiden at last. Naturally, she has shown improvement since her last start, and her works are also sharp.

Prediction: 3-10-7-1

— NS

Categories: Grade III, STAKES ARTICLES

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