Let’s Be Thankful for Falls City Handicap

Falls City Handicap (Grade 2)- $500.000 Purse
CD- For Fillies and Mares Three Years Old and Upward
One Mile and One Eighth on the Dirt
November 25, 2021

While the turkey is in the oven on Thursday, we got an excellent race in store as the Grade 2 Falls City Handicap takes place at CD. The $500.000 that is at stake is a purse level never seen before in this race, as the previous high was $300.000, and last year the race ran for $200.000. It’s encouraging to see that kind of increase, and that will attract a field of eight, two of which ran in the BC Distaff earlier in the month. The race was won by Maxmillion Farm’s Grand Cyclone last year, and she went on to have a good five year old season as well. She is now in the hands of Smokey Stover and still active. Weights for this race will range from 117 to 121 pounds, with most of the field at 120 or 121. Let’s take a look at those going to post!

#1- Last Lady (Lindeman Prairie, ridden by A Cedillo)- This three year old filly will be one of the ones carrying 121 pounds, thanks to a victory in the Grade 3 Pine Stakes in August. That was part of what has been a great season for her, with four wins in nine starts. The last time we saw her on the track was in the Grade 1 Spinster, where she ran second to Wbf No Regrets, and there are several in this field that are coming out of that race. Unfortunately, that was not quite good enough to get her in the BC Distaff.

#2- Out Of The Park (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by S X Bridgmohan)- Interestingly, this horse has started on the rail in her last five starts, and has been in post 1 or 2 in her last seven races. This will mark the eighth race in a row for that streak. Has two wins to her credit, but none of them come in the stakes that she has been entered in. Her last two races have seen her try and use a come from well behind strategy, but that has not always been the case with her. Placed fourth in the Grade 1 Spinster in her last start, and was close to Last Lady at the wire.

#3- Mag Ol (Greyfriars Stable, ridden by J L Ortiz)- Here is the first of the two horses in the field that ran in the BC Distaff, but you would be forgiven if you didn’t remember her being in the race. It was not a highlight for her, finishing dead last, five lengths from the lead. Since back to back seconds in the Mother Goose and the Alabama, Mag Ol has been struggling, but it might not be too late for her to dig down and pull out another big race right here.

#4- Tamalpais (Mb Stables, ridden by E Jaramillo)- There will be two in this field wearing the Mb silks, and they will be side to side in the starting gate. Between them, Tamalpais may be the better of the two options. At the beginning of the month, since she was not able to run in the BC Distaff, she went to the Big A and ended up winning the Grade 3 Turn Back The Alarm for her first career stake win. She has mostly been running in overnights this year and has a series of productive starts in optional claimers. Look for her to build on her last start well.

#5- Blondewithhandcuffs (Mb Stables, ridden by D Davis)- This five year old mare did a lot of stakes racing in her younger days, but only recently has she been returning to this level. Open allowances have been kind to her this year, as she has won her last three of that race type. The trainer opted to move her back into the stake level, but also changed her to running on the grass at the same time. Those results were decent, collecting a piece of the purse in both, but now she is going to get her chance on the dirt against some very good opposition.

#6- Lordess (Our Athletes, ridden by T Gaffalione)- As a young three year old, Lordess appeared in a few graded stakes, but her results may have proven that she was not yet ready for them. Now, for the first time since March 2020, the filly will be trying her luck at this level again, and the trainer is aiming high. Just one of her six races this year have ended with a trip to the winners circle, but she has finished third three times. A strong work here last week may have a lot to do with the confidence in entering her and she must be at her best in this race.

#7- Bay Of Indy (Broken Spoke Stables, ridden by M Franco)- Picked up by the trainer in private sales over the summer, and she has since made three starts for Broken Spoke. One of them was a pretty big win, when she captured the Grade 3 RP Oaks at odds of 61/1. A couple weeks later, she got a lot more respect at the betting window and ran a respectable third in the Grade 1 Spinster, being right there with Last Lady and Out Of The Park. She’s had more time to rest and recover now, and should be poised to run a big race.

#8- Z Command (Smokey Stover, ridden by J R Velazquez)- If you’re reading the SRF, you have heard this name many times. Z Command has had an impressive 33-race career up to this point, with twelve wins, including the 2019 BC Distaff. In all, she has accumulated over $4,000.000 in earnings during her career. Ran in the BC Distaff this year as well, and had a good bounce back from her prior three races where she finished closer to the back than the front. She is the high weight in here, but she can overcome that. No question, she has the biggest name in the field, and she can never have her chances discounted.

Prediction: 8-1-7-4

— NS

Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES

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