First Lady – Grade I [BC]
KEE Race #8 1m Turf Graded Stake
Purse $400.000 For Fillies And Mares Three Years Old And Upward.
1 Phoe Eva Angelos Stable Carrasco V R
Apart from one poor effort on an off track this year this five year old mare by Unsuited has shown the sort of improvement that says she is breasting the top of her improvement curve. A good winner in The Wilshire Stakes, that was her break through race and since then she has been going very well in top company. I very much liked her run in the KD ladies Turf last time from a a sticky gate and if she can make use of the ace draw today she could be an undervalued chance in a very competitive race.
2 Ete Creek Gdp Inc Centeno D E
Three year olds sometimes find it tough when they turn four and can hit a bit of a flat spot but after a win in the Very One at the start of the year that did not look the case for her. Since then however she has struggled a bit but that could be down to the fact that she went to the dirt. She actually ran pretty well in the La Troienne when second but hasn’t done as well since. I think she is more consistent on the grass and gets the perfect draw today to find some of that early season form.
3 Summers Day First Street Stables Pennington F
There was a time when the booking of Pennington in a turf route was pretty much a guarantee of a win but these days his love of the grass is not so prevalent. Still a good hoop to have though and he handled this filly nicely to win the Lake Placid last time. She has got lucky with the draw this year and gets a good one again today and is looking for her fourth stakes win in a row here. The three year olds are just beginning to make in roads on the older horses now especially the fillies and this could easily add to their growing tally.
4 Hash Tag Hash Fractious Bridgmohan S X
This is a fine filly and when she won the grade one Just A Game she looked like she was hitting form at the right time for a run at the BC. Since that win however she has struggled in both the Yellow Ribbon and the KD Ladies Turf and whilst those efforts do seem out of character you do have to wonder whether she is in the right frame of mind at the moment. Her works aren’t suggesting a problem so she could easily bounce back today but until she shows her old form she is a bit of a risky proposition.
5 Why You Do That Mb Stables Gaffalione T
What are the odds that all three runners from a stable can be drawn together in the middle of the field, well i guess the same as any other position so lets not dwell on that. The first of the inevitable three from Mb is a filly that started the year off down at TAM in allowances but since then has proved she is more than up to stakes class. Most of her recent form has been on dirt but she was switched back to turf for a good second in the Ballston last time proving once again that a good horse at HRP can run on either surface. Tactics between the stable runners will be important but she is working well and has the form to be right in this.
6 Marner Mb Stables Jaramillo E
Mb Stables does a fair bit of business with Patterson Stables and their association has brought some notable success. This three year old was bought for $100 after running pretty well in overnights sprints but as expected she grew a leg when she arrived at the champions stable and quickly paid a bit of the purchase price off with a win in the Riskaverse over this trip. That was a short field but she won it well and her works are suggesting that she has more to come. In years gone past a three year old like this would have been a guaranteed top three but things haven’t quite been the same this year so she still has something to prove to be considered a winner here and a BC chance.
7 Notorious Crown Mb Stables Hernandez C J
Beaten just a half length and right alongside Phoe Eva in the KD ladies Turf when third that was a real step up for a filly that had been sprinting at TAM and LAD at the start of the year. We often see these startling improvements with the champs horses though and her works now are right up there with the best of the fillies and mares. On works from BEL over six furlongs the stables three year old has the edge with her weight allowance but i think this one may come out on top if form was the key factor.
8 Ewa Beach The American Prat F
This stable doesn’t have a big operation but when they picked up this mare for just forty dollars in a claim from Smokey Stover they certainly entered the big time. She came straight out and won the Marshua River and has since placed at grade one and won the Ballston last time from Why You Do That. She will be there on BC day which is a huge achievement for the stable but may just pick up some more prize money on the way in this race.
9 Ice Crystal Smokey Stover Gutierrez Mario
The trainer will be thrilled this home bred by their champion State Police is already a grade one winner this year and there aren’t many three year old fillies that can do the BEL/SAR Oaks double like this one did. She arrived too late in the Jockey Club Oaks to complete a famous treble but went into the black book that day after a troubled run. If the three year olds have caught up with the older horses then this is the one that looks good enough to do the job and will be a very good benchmark for the BC. The draw isn’t great so there may be excuses but she must go down as a major chance.
10 Commanding Jane Night Rider Stables Saez L
Tired to make all but didn’t last home in the Ballston last time but has won twice before that over the mile using the same tactics so with the wide draw today i expect her tp once again get into the lead. She was good enough to win the Nassau in that role on a wet track and one does feel that if the rain comes today and she can get the lead from the gate that she will be hard to pull back.
12 Party In The Brig Mo Mentum Farm Espinoza V
The car park goes to this consistent filly who has been top four in stakes races in her last five starts. She is working well and gets a chance at the BC field here but the draw monster has been very unkind and she may find it too tough.
In years gone past a three year old working the same time as the older horses but getting the weight allowance was all we needed for a clean sweep and a fairly easy pick. This year however that hasn’t been the case but there has been glimpses that things are changing for the BC and i do wonder whether we will see a clean sweep for the three’s here. On form Ice Crystal should be the one to beat but the draw is tough for her so that brings Marner and Summers Day right into it. There is a part of me that was really enjoying the olders having some success for a change so my heart will be shouting for the likes of Hash Tag Hash and Ewa beach but i do think the time has come for the switch to the three year olds.