The Beldame – Grade II
BEL Race #4 1 1/8m Dirt Graded Stake
Purse $250.000 For Fillies And Mares Three Years Old And Upward.
This race is often used as a stepping stone to the BC Distaff amd this year is no exception with a few of the top chances taking this race as their prep for the big one.
Here is how they line up, only seven, but the quality is there:
1 Actualize Fractious Bejarano R
Bought for $250 in the early summer the three year old has yet to live up to that price tag but as the three’s catch up with the oldies on the development front she may be ready to show her best. After two good wins she rather strangely went for the Metropolitan Handicap where she was always going to be in an impossible position being worse off at weight for age as well as the sex allowance. She did pretty well to get within 5 lengths of the winner but ended up ninth which is when the current trainer decided to buy her. They won a decent optional allowance first up but then she disappointed in the Test and ran better but not in the first four in the Prioress. She steps up in trip today off the back of some encouraging works so she could surprise from this ace draw.
2 Ku Deh Night Rider Stables Saez L
Last year this one would’ve had a chance but this year the three’s haven’t been so dominant so even though she has the best draw she may be hard pushed to beat some of her rivals here. The winner of just one race she has run well recently but one has to feel this is a hail mary type of entry. The trainer has done it before with similar horses so i wont say she cant win but she wouldn’t be my first choice.
3 Miss Steel Mazula Nakamura Stables Carrasco V R
This four year old did well in the early season but has really exploded since being given a canter at LAD in a little optional allowance. Whatever the trainer was looking for there they found because she has come out and won two graded stakes in a row with the grade one Personal Ensign being the last of those. She ran very well in that grade one after going forward from a horrible draw she held on gamely to dead heat for the win. She looks to make it four wins in a row here and there is no reason why she can’t.
4 Exultant Gal TwinTowersRacing Gonzalez Ru
The three year olds are well represented here as we near the end of the year and people are picking up on the fact that they seem to be maturing later this season. Another that has just won the one race she does have much better exposed form than some being placed in both the Honeybee and the Fantasy in the Spring. Since those efforts she has been largely disappointing but hinted at a return to form in an allowance last time but will need to be back to her best and some to win this.
5 Z Command Smokey Stover Alvarado J
This trainer seems to love the fillies and their stable looks like a high class brothel at times with mares being bought in and then passed on to the stallions. The breeding operation aside the off shot of that is that they own some of the best female flesh in the game and this one who has already won a distaff is among the best of them, The winner of three graded stakes this year including the Phipps she has had a go at the boys in her last two but has come up short in both attempts. Her last effort in the JC Gold Cup was so bad that it does call her form into question and a bad run here could see her join the other girls in Smokeys harem.
6 Dorians Drift YME Stable Ryan S
Looked to be coming on nicely early in the year taking a little handicap before being upped in grade to the Phipps. She ran well enough to be sixth but hasn’t really improved since then. Her works say she is good enough but she has yet to display a strong enough class gene to really be considered here. A punchers chance and on works a good one.
7 Strawberry Mb Stables Bahen S R
The champion trainer gets the visitors draw here but this filly may be improving quick enough to overcome it. Bought for just $50 after winning a cheap claiming sprint low and behold she was turned into a stakes horse when she ran home well to be beaten just a neck in the Locust Grove. To be fair that wasn’t much of a race and if anyone else owned this horse i wouldn’t give it a chance against the heavyweights in this but this trainer rarely sends a dud and this filly is working well enough to get close.
Well on form alone this looks a straight fight between Z Command and Miss Steel Mazula but we all know form doesn’t mean too much at HRP and i just wonder whether we will see an upset here. On works its a very open race so it may pay to have a close look at the three year olds as three pounds could well make the difference.