First, a quick recap of last week’s race. Rain came and turned the dirt track good, but that didn’t affect Simply Golden. The horse that I expected to be setting the pace, Simply Golden actually sat 4th early, a couple of lengths off of pacesetter American Trumpet. But while American Trumpet had the skill to outlast most of the other competitors, Simply Golden was simply too much, as he grabbed the lead in the stretch and never looked back, winning by 1-1/2 lengths at 6/1 and picking up a 99 SP. American Trumpet held on for 2nd (with a 97 SP) as the 7/2 favorite, and Aldarity closed from 10th early to edge out Cryptic Sunshine for 3rd at 7/1 (a 96 SP).
This week, the Future Stars Series heads back to the female ranks and back to Louisiana, where 11 3yo fillies are preparing to compete in a NW3L Allowance at 8 furlongs on the dirt. The field is:
#1 – Carson’s Prayer (Songandaprayer x Carson City x Hennessy) – Owned by maverick – 10/1
Race Record: 5:2-2-0; $82,715
Race History: A 2 time winner on the local circuit, Carson’s Prayer made a jump from the local races to an open stakes in November 2018 and held her own, finishing a closing 5th at 7.5f on the dirt. Stretched out to 8f in an open allowance to kick off 2019, she caught a 4 horse field and sat 3rd early before moving and coming up just short at the wire, earning a career high 90 SP for her first route effort. Normally a deeper closer, Carson’s Prayer may have been hurt by the short field in that race, where there was absolutely no pace. She has seen SP improvements in each of her 5 races and looks to improve again with a larger field here.
Pedigree: This Florida-bred was bred to be a speedball. Songandaprayer, pensioned to start the year, was the #5 ranked Florida sire in 2018. Historically in the sim, he has only had 1 graded stakes winner, 19yo mare Pray For Me, who was a G1 winner at 7 furlongs in the Dancer Cap back in 2004. Much like her, Songandaprayer produces mainly dirt sprinters, with 75% of earnings on dirt and 63% in sprints. His 2018 crop includes 29 runners, of which 17 have found the winner’s circle at a 15% rate. Carson’s Prayer is the best of those, as she is one of only 2 to have won a non-hot allowance. Songandaprayer has been crossed with Carson City 3 times in the past 4 years (and 3 more times between 10 and 15 years ago), and Carson’s Prayer is definitely looking to be the best of the crop. The cross has produced primarily dirt sprinters, but of the recent three, Carson’s Prayer is the only one with a win above the hot level.
Expectations: Carson’s Prayer is one of those horses that seems to be running well beyond her pedigree, and it’s interesting to see how she’s been doing on the track. Unlike what you would expect from the pedigree, she’s shown to be a closer that loves the route distances, and unlike her last race, she’ll get a pace that she will love to run into here. It’s always nice to have those Florida local races to fall back on, but Carson’s Prayer looks like she should be able to fit in just fine in open company here. A real contender.
Watch Level: High
#2 – Safety Guide (Bernardini x Kingmambo x Storm Cat) – Owned by harrylanlow26 – 9/2 (f-t)
Race Record: 3:2-0-0; $62,940
Race History: Safety Guide’s 6th place finish in race #2, her first try at the NW2L level, looks to be a blip in her form, even though she only finished 1 length back in a blanket finish. She comes into this race off of a very strong victory in a NW2L allowance at 7.5f back in December 2018. In that race, she battled for the lead early, then grabbed it and never looked back, cruising to a 1-1/2 length win and earning a career high 89 SP (her 2nd consecutive SP increase). The second place horse in that race came back to win an allowance next time out with a 96 SP, and 5 of the other 7 horses in that race to have come back to the track also hit the board in allowances (1 of those 5 also earned a victory). Safety Guide will add an extra ½ furlong here to try routing for the first time in her first race of 2019.
Pedigree: Bernardini, the #33 ranked US sire in 2018 and winner of the 2005 Preakness Stakes, currently stands in Kentucky for $50,000. In the sim, his 2018 crop currently ranks #39, with 87 winners from 168 runners to date (winning at a 14.5% rate, well below Bernardini’s average of 20.5%). The class includes 4 stakes winners but no graded winners as of yet, with those 4 spread across turf routes, dirt routes, and dirt sprints. Overall, Bernardini foals find dirt routes preferable, with 70% of earnings in routes and 67% on dirt (though in general, Bernardini’s turf speed figures are slightly better than the dirt SPs, relative to the competition). The Bernardini x Kingmambo cross is pretty popular, having been used 17 times in the past 4 years. Among those 17 is 4yo G2 winner Outback Balkan, a horse that has found most of her success in dirt miles similar to today’s race. Although she is the only stakes winner from the group of 17, the cross does seem to excel in 8-9f races (both on dirt and turf). In addition to Safety Guide and Outback Balkan, one other horse from those 17 also share Storm Cat as a DDS, 3yo Bernastorm, who unfortunately has not done more than break her maiden in 7 career starts to date, doing most of her running on the turf.
Expectations: It’s been a solid start to a career for this blueblood, and Safety Guide is looking to continue that trend here. She’s very likely to sit close to the lead early, and possibly push the pace. But if there are a lot of other horses doing the same, she may not have quite the same burst as some of the others. Her second race is a bit of a caution tale, as she only sat 1-1/2 lengths off the pace but had 6 horses in front of her, and she was never able to break through that pack. Unfortunately, this race looks to be setting up similarly, but may with an extra ½ furlong Safety Guide will have a little more time to push forward. She’s got a decent chance here.
Watch Level: High
#3 – Dilys Price (Quality Road x Mambo Town [Street Sense x Kingmambo]) – Owned by cwk3 – 7/1
Race Record: 5:2-2-0; $68,815
Race History: Dilys Price didn’t like losing a nose photo 2 back, so she comes into this race off of a dominant 1-3/4 length win in a NW2L Allowance at 7f. In that field of 8, she sat 4th early, 3 lengths back, before turning on the jets in the stretch and pulling away, picking up a 92 SP for her effort. She has seen her speed figures improve in each of her 5 races to date, and has progressed in distances to lead to the 8f effort today. The horse she defeated in her last race came back to win an allowance next time out with an 89 SP. 3 races back Dilys Price struggled in her first allowance try, finishing 7th and trailing today’s competitor D’Oro Cookies (who finished 4th), but she moved forward in her two most recent tries and brings that momentum into this, her first race of 2019.
Pedigree: Quality Road, standing for $150,000 in Kentucky, has moved up the real life ranks and was the #7 ranked US sire in 2018. His sim crop has not quite caught up to his real life counterparts, as the 2018 crop currently ranks #110 with 46 winners from 93 runners (winning at a 15% rate). Only one of those 93 is currently a stakes winner, and that horse, Quality Killer, is a G3 winner at 8f on the turf, though his best race to date was a recent 3rd in a stakes at 9.5f on the dirt. Quality Road’s progeny strongly prefer dirt (68% earnings on dirt), with a pretty even split in earnings between sprints and routes (though the speed figures favor sprints). Dilys Price is the only foal of 7yo he-mare Mambo Town. Mambo Town was very successful in his own racing career, with 6 wins in 32 races, scoring at the stakes level and G2 placed, all at 9f on the dirt. He did his best career running at the 9f dirt distance, though he ended his career showing some solid efforts on the turf as well. Street Sense mares have been sent to Quality Road 3 times in the past 4 years with moderate success; one of the others has picked up a couple of allowance wins in short (5f) sprints, whereas the other, 3yo Outlaw Road, has done her best running on the dirt as distances increase.
Expectations: Dilys Price has really come on strong in her last 2 races and is certainly trending in the right direction. Expect her to stalk the pace here, though if she’s not prepared for her first route race, she may end up closer to the pace than she would normally want. If she’s able to settle, Dilys Price has shown the ability to pass those horses in front and draw off. She’s faced strong competition in the past, has a solid career high SP, and has a strong chance in this race…as long as she can get the distance, which could be a concern given her sire.
Watch Level: High
#4 – Need Jumper Cables (Jump Start x Latchkey Kid [Rahy x Broad Brush]) – Owned by scrapmetal – 22/1
Race Record: 2:2-0-0; $39,780
Race History: Need Jumper Cables is one of only 2 undefeated runners in this race, but undefeated may be a little misleading for this miss. Debuting in a 4.5f local MSW back in July 2018, she beat a 4 horse field (including 1 *CPU horse) by ¾ length with a 68 SP. Then following a sale at auction, the current owner ran her back at 5f in a local NW1x in December 2018, and again she found a 4 horse field (including 1 *CPU horse) that she soundly defeated, winning by 1-1/2 lengths with a 71 SP. Need Jumper Cables enters this race off of that win, but this is a monster jump in both class and distance, up to an open company NW3L with 11 horses.
Pedigree: Jump Start, currently standing in Pennsylvania for $10,000, was the #2 ranked Mid-Atlantic sire and #42 ranked overall US sire in 2018. His sim rankings have not been as strong, and his 2018 crop currently ranks #142, with 26 winners from 49 runners (winning at a 15.5% rate). Jump Start’s progeny have a preference for dirt, and historically have been pretty evenly split between sprinters and routers, though over the past 3 years they have tended more towards sprints. His progeny tend to do a lot of racing at the local level. Need Jumper Cables is the 6th foal from 12yo mare Latchkey Kid, who managed a G2 win among her 8 wins over 32 starts. That G2 win, as well as her other career stakes win, both came at the 8f dirt distance of today’s race, and she clearly excelled as a miler (primarily on dirt, though she did manage a couple of turf mile victories as well). Her other progeny have not quite taken after her stakes success, though all 5 prior progeny have managed at least 1 non-local, non-hot allowance victory. Most of those horses have similarly found success in dirt routes, mainly at the 8-10f distances.
Expectations: It’s tough to tell exactly what to expect from Need Jumper Cables here. On the one hand, she’s 2 for 2 lifetime. On the other, it was two very weak fields, and she didn’t put up particularly impressive speed figures to land those victories. She dueled for the lead in both of those races, though at 4.5 and 5 furlongs, there’s isn’t much time to do anything other than duel for the lead. My take is that she seems like a decent local runner for the PA-DE track, but she looks to be in over her head here. I expect her to break towards the back and stay there; but who knows.
Watch Level: Low
#5 – Street Sense Lady (Street Sense x Seattle’s Giant [Giant’s Causeway x Seattle Slew]) – Owned by ddkstables13 – 9/2 (f-t)
Race Record: 5:2-0-3; $73,390
Race History: Never off the board in 5 starts, Street Sense Lady comes into this race off of back-to-back 3rd place finishes in 8.5f allowances, earning a career high 94 SP in her most recent race. That most recent race, a NW3L allowance in January, saw Street Sense Lady set a slow pace early, but she couldn’t fend off 2 other horses, one of whom was a previous stakes winner and one that was second in the G1 Breeders Bowl Juvenile Filly. Street Sense Lady showed her talent in that race, however, and finished ahead of today’s opponent D’Oro Cookies (who ran 6th). She has spent most of her 5 race career at the 8-8.5f distance, and in her best runs has sat a couple of lengths off of the leaders before cruising to victory late. She’ll try that again here.
Pedigree: Street Sense, the 2007 Kentucky Derby winner and #17 ranked US sire in 2018, stands for $50,000 in Kentucky. In the sim, he’s been a pretty consistent sire, and his 2018 crop is no different, as it currently ranks #37 overall. That crop is comprised of 123 runners to date, with 64 winners winning at an 18% rate, and among those winners are 5 stakes winners. Street Sense’s progeny prefer dirt routes (67% of earnings on dirt, 61% in routes), though the stakes winners from the current 3yo crop are evenly split among dirt/turf and sprints/routes. Seattle’s Giant, a 5yo he-mare, struggled on the track, but with the Giant’s Causeway x Seattle Slew bloodlines, it was pretty much a guarantee that he’d head to the breeding shed. Seattle’s Giant only won 1 race in his 19 race career, in career race #16, but that win came at 8.5f and was a career high speed figure. With that said, he retired just as he started to get in the swing of things in the 7-9f range (though 9f may have been his limit) and may have been a horse that got better with age (he only ran once after 3). Very surprisingly given the bloodlines, Seattle’s Giant never tried turf. Giant’s Causeway is one of the most popular damsires for Street Sense in the sim, with the cross being used 18 times in the past 4 years, resulting in 2 graded stakes winners (1 in turf routes, 1 in dirt sprints). The dirt sprint winner, 6yo Fifty Sense, is similarly a Street Sense x Giant’s Causeway x Seattle Slew, as are 3 others (one is merely a maiden winner in 18 starts, while the other two are each also 3yos with only 3 career starts).
Expectations: If the pace ends up non-existent, Street Sense Lady could be out in front, but that’s unlikely in this field. So it’s a little more likely that Street Sense Lady will be sit midpack early and try and use an extra gear to catch the leaders at the end. It’s hard to look away from a horse that has not yet finished off of the board, especially when that horse has these bloodlines. And Street Sense Lady comes into this race off of a field-best 94 SP, indicating that she moved forward when maturing to a 3yo. She ran respectably against 2 stakes caliber horses last time, and she’s got the ability to get the job done here. Solid chances.
Watch Level: High
#6 – D’Oro Cookies (Goldencents x Madam D’Oro (Medaglia D’Oro x Unbridled) – Owned by gangly2 – 5/1
Race Record: 7:2-2-0; $87,562
Race History: D’Oro Cookies comes into this race, her second of 2019, off of a fading 6th place finish in a NW3L allowance at 8.5f, where she trailed today’s opponent Street Sense Lady (who finished 3rd), but earned a career high 89 SP. Her speed figures have stayed consistent since reaching the route distances, putting up 87-89 SPs in each of her last 3 races. Her last win was 3 back at 8f, where she sat just off the leaders early and managed to grab a photo win. Of note, she finished ahead of today’s opponent Dilys Price in a NW2L allowance at 7f back in September 2018, finishing 4th (with a 79 SP) to her opponent’s 7th place finish.
Pedigree: Goldencents, a 2-time winner of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, was the #2 ranked first-crop US sire of 2018 and currently stands for $20,000 in Kentucky. His 4th sim crop, in 2018, currently ranks #114, with 35 winners from 67 runners scoring at a nearly 18% rate. His progeny are principally dirt sprinters (70% earnings on dirt, 68% in sprints). He has not yet had a graded stakes winner in the sim, though he has had 9 total stakes winners from his first 3 crops to date. The 2018 crop is stakes-less thus far, with 2 horses stakes placed in dirt sprints. D’Oro Cookies is the 8th foal from 13yo mare Madam D’Oro, a winner of 3 from 17 races in her career. Madam D’Oro was multiple stakes placed in dirt sprints as a 2yo (in fields of 4 and 7), but did her fastest running in turf 8-8.5f races. Her best progeny to date, 10yo Indioro (Indian Charlie), is a stakes winner at 7f, but he is stakes placed at 8.5f and was pretty consistent at any distance up to 8.5f on the dirt. Madam D’Oro’s only other stakes placed foal, Compasso D’Oro (Pure Prize), was most successful in dirt sprints, but most of the rest of her progeny have done their best running in dirt routes. Medaglia D’Oro mares have been the most popular cross for Goldencents in the sim, with 10 such pedigrees in the sim, of which 2 are stakes placed and in general, those horses find the 8f distance on the dirt to be an ideal place to race.
Expectations: D’Oro Cookies is likely to try to sit just off the pace in this race. She’s been pretty consistent at this distance, but her last race leads to some concern that other 3yo fillies may have taken a jump that she didn’t, as it’s the first time in her career that she fell off as far as she did. There’s a chance, though, that 8.5f was a touch too long for her (and the competition in that race was tough, as the top 2 were a G1-placed filly and a stakes winner, respectively, coming into that race), which gives her an excuse. But you only get one of those; she’ll need to prove here that she has improved with the rest of her 3yo class. If she does, she’s got a shot.
Watch Level: Medium
#7 – Henty Kelee (Awesome Again x Finke Leeton [Uncle Mo x Smart Strike]) – Owned by chatham01 – 5/1
Race Record: 2:2-0-0; $62,940
Race History: The sponsor of this race, Henty Kelee comes in as one of only 2 undefeated horses here. But those 2 prior races were very impressive. In her maiden score back in November 2018 at 5.5f, she sprinted to the lead and never looked back, easily winning by 1-1/2 and earning a 77 SP. Stretching out to 6.5f in her next race, she decided to sit a length off the leaders early, but exploded in the far turn and pulled away to win by 1-1/4, seeing a massive 14 point jump in SP up to a career high 91. The only drawback is that only 2 of her previous 19 competitors have come back to the track to win a race (and one of those was in a claimer), and the horse she beat last time out could only manage a 5th place finish in her next race. Henty Kelee will stretch out another 1.5 furlongs here for her first 2019 race.
Pedigree: Awesome Again, who stands for a private fee, was the #50 ranked sire in the US in 2018. In the sim, his #12 ranked 2018 crop includes 178 runners, from which 102 have won to date at a 19.5% rate. The 3yo crop includes 4 graded stakes winners – among them is My Awesome King, the 2yo Turf Male Sim Eclipse Award winner (who appears to be trying out the Bluegrass Derby trail) – and 8 other stakes winners. Overall, Awesome Again’s sim foals tend to prefer dirt routes (68% earnings on dirt and in routes). Henty Kelee is the first foal from 5yo mare Finke Leeton, who was sent to the breeding shed early. Finke Leeton was a winner of 3 from 21 career races, with her best coming at 7-9f on the dirt. She did manage a 4th place finish in a stakes at 8f early in her career, but she also showed some distance limitations beyond 9f. That should be fine in this race, but it’s something to consider for the future. Uncle Mo mares have been sent to Awesome Again 7 times in the past 4 years, and although none have yet achieved stakes success, 2 of the other 6 are allowance winners and 2 others are 3yos with only 2-3 career starts.
Expectations: Expectations are sky-high for this blueblood 3yo, and Henty Kelee has lived up to expectations thus far. She showed that she can sit off the pace in her last race, but she’s got speed and the real question is how hard she wants to push it. She’s got the talent, but she’s facing a field that has more experience, and with the quality in this one, that could be an issue. But the added half furlong here should help and she’s got the ability to get the job done. She’s definitely got a shot in here.
Watch Level: High
#8 – Banished From Hell (Bernardini x Deputy Minister x Distorted Humor) – Owned by buffalosteve2 – 7/1
Race Record: 4:2-0-1; $72,940
Race History: Banished From Hell is the most decorated horse in the field, picking up a 3rd place in a residency-restricted stakes race at 7.5f 2 races back. She comes into this race off of a nearly 4 month layoff, where back in October 2018 Banished From Hell picked up a 1 length win in an 8f NW2L Allowance (in her first allowance run after some stakes efforts). In that race, Banished From Hell battled for the lead early and won the battle, prevailing with a career high 85 SP. Unfortunately, that NW2L race doesn’t look too strong, as none of her 11 competitors came back to a better than 4th place finish next time out.
Pedigree: Bernardini is described above under Safety Guide. The Bernardini x Deputy Minister cross has been used 14 times in the past 4 years (not including 2yos). Among those, only 1, Il Danzatore, has picked up a stakes win, completing the feat at 9.5f on the dirt, though one of the 3yos, Pirate Minister, is stakes placed in a dirt sprint (and seems to be improving with distance). In general, the cross seems to most prefer dirt classic distances.
Expectations: Banished From Hell has some early speed and can challenge the pace up front. The good news for her is that she doesn’t need the lead, and is content to merely push the pace. She may need to sit close, as race #3 of her career saw her try to stalk from lengths behind, but she was unable to make up ground on the 2 ahead of her (which included a maiden). The speed figures are moving in the right direction, but there might be a little too much pressure up front for a horse coming off of a 4 month layoff. Banished From hell has some solid potential, especially as she spends more time in routes, but she might need a race here before really ramping back up.
Watch Level: Medium
#9 – Battle Thy Mom (Battle of Midway x Honour Thy Mom [To Honor and Serve x More Than Ready]) – Owned by ehteam9 – 10/1
Race Record: 3:2-0-0; $43,449
Race History: Battle Thy Mom has shown exactly what you would want to see out of a horse with only 3 career races. After easily breaking her maiden in start #1 at 6.5f in August 2018, she took 3 months off and came back with a solid 4th, seeing a 10 point SP jump. In her first try of 2019, at today’s 8f distance in a NW2L, she sprinted out of the gate, grabbed the lead, and never looked back, opening to win by 2.5 lengths and earning a career high 92 SP (another 10 point jump). The second place horse in that race came back next time out to run 3rd with an 87 SP. Battle Thy Mom will try to make it 3 for 4 here.
Pedigree: Battle of Midway, winner of the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, is an interesting tale as he was retired after the 2017 season, but due to a missing gene in his DNA, he turned out to be subfertile, and returned to racing in 2018. But he got 5 real life mares pregnant, which was enough to establish him as a 1 year sim sire, and that 1 crop currently has 71 runners, of which 26 have found the winner’s circle at a 12% rate. One of those 26, Torpedo Strike, is a stakes winner at 8f on the turf, but it’s hard to tell whether his progeny would have preferred dirt or turf, or the ideal distances for them to run. Battle Thy Mom is the 4th foal from 8yo mare Honour Thy Mom, a stakes winning mare. Honour Thy Mom won 3 of 16 races in her career, with her stakes win and other stakes placing coming in owner-restricted stakes races at the 8-9f dirt distances. Her other 2 wins came in dirt sprints, but she was able to run well anywhere from 7-9f on the dirt. Her first foal, 6yo Challenge Coin (Goldencents) is an owner-restricted stakes winner and 2-time open stakes placed horse, all in dirt sprints. Honour Thy Mom’s 2 other foals to date have also managed to run their best races in sprints (one on dirt, and one, to the extent there was a “best” race, on turf). Shockingly (to me), Battle Thy Mom is only one of two 3yos from Battle of Midway bred to a To Honor and Serve mare; the other has not run past 5.5f on dirt yet, and is 0 for 2 at the MSW level.
Expectations: Battle Thy Mom has speed, and a lot of it. She’s gonna want to blast out of the gate and try to set the pace, and if her last race is any indication, she’ll be able to set a very fast pace with something left in the tank. If she can run back to that last race, she’s got a great chance in here. But it’s interesting to note that her only loss came in the only race where she didn’t have the lead early; so she may need the lead in order to win. She does have the speed to get that lead though.
Watch Level: High
#10 – Xeromoz (Flatter x Black Tie Affair x Riverman) – Owned by legends4 – 12/1
Race Record: 7:2-1-3; $81,324
Race History: Xeromoz has only missed the board once, in her second career race (where she finished 4th), but it took her 6 tries to break her maiden. But once she did, the flood gates opened, and she comes into this race on a 2 race winning streak, running nearly identical races at 7f on the dirt. In both, Xeromoz sat 3/4 length back early, pounced in the far turn to grab the lead, and then maintain her speed throughout, winning by 1-1/2 each time. She comes into this race off of a career high 88 SP from her NW1x try, consistent with her maiden-winning 87 SP (which was a big jump over her prior 75). The 2nd place horse from her last race came back to run 3rd with an 88 SP next time out. This will be Xeromoz’s first try in a route.
Pedigree: Flatter, the #10 ranked US sire in 2018, doesn’t get the same sim acclaim that his real life counterpart does. His 2018 sim crop is currently ranked #125 (trailing only his 2017 crop, ranked #97), with 80 runners and 35 winners, winning at an 18% rate (well above Flatter’s 14% average). Flatter’s progeny find themselves at their best in dirt sprints (69% earnings on dirt, 58% sprints), exemplified by the best of the 3yo crop, Flat Flap, who is G2-placed and a stakes winner at 6f on the dirt. But that doesn’t preclude route success, and Flatter The Lady, his other 3yo stakes winner, has done her best running at 8-9f on dirt thus far in her career. Flatter was bred to a Black Tie Affair mare once in the sim, but that occurred back in 2005, so it doesn’t really help analyze Xeromoz here.
Expectations: The nice things about Xeromoz is that her running style has been consistent, so you know what to expect. She should sit somewhere around 1 length off the pacesetter early, regardless of how many other horses are around her, and then try to grab the lead late. She may be a little more forwardly placed with that same sprint speed in this route effort, but looking at the pacesetters here, Xeromoz might find herself in familiar territory. Coming off of 2 wins is nice, and the improvement she saw in breaking her maiden against a decent field is promising. The only question is whether the 8f will be problematic, and the sprint pedigree scares me a little here. She’s got a good case to make, but I’ll take this as a “watch, don’t bet” race for her.
Watch Level: Medium
#11 – A Queen Is Born (More Than Ready x Heavenly Touched [Street Cry x Theatrical]) – Owned by stormbound – 21/1
Race Record: 8:2-0-1; $15,966
Race History: After struggling since breaking her maiden on the turf in race #4, A Queen is Born finally broke the slump in a Hot Allowance in her first race of 2019. Catching 3 *CPU horses at 7.5f on the dirt, she let the pacesetter get away on a loose lead early, before reeling her in and easily winning by 1-1/2 lengths, earning a 75 SP (tied for a career high with an 8.5f effort). Although her maiden score was at 8f on the turf, her two prior dirt efforts at the 8-8.5f distance saw her sit towards the back early and stay there throughout the race. She’ll try to improve off the win here.
Pedigree: More Than Ready, the #8 ranked US sire in 2018, currently stands in Kentucky for $80,000. In the sim, his 2018 crop is stellar so far, currently ranking #7 with 90 winners from 140 runners (winning at a nearly 22% rate). Those 90 winners includes a G3 winner at 6f in More Than Regal, and 8 other stakes winners, primarily sprinting. More Than Ready’s progeny have a strong preference towards dirt (67% of earnings on dirt) and favor sprinting generally (58% sprints). Heavenly Touched, the 8yo dam of A Queen is Born, was a G2 winner in during her 28 race career, which ended with 9 wins (3 stakes and 1 G2), primarily on the turf at 8-9f. Her biggest victory was in the Celine Stakes – G2 (8.5f-T) back in 2014. The bloodlines look strong initially, as her first foal, 5yo Cry From Above (Mastercraftsman (IRE)) is a G3 winner herself, also finding most of her success (which includes 3 stakes wins and 3 more stakes placings) on the turf at the 8-9f distances. The second foal, 4yo Dreaming of Jen (Oasis Dream (GB)), has been better on the dirt, indicating some multi-surface ability in the bloodlines. The More Than Ready x Street Cry cross has been used 13 times in the past 4 years, leading to two stakes winners, the most promising of whom is 3yo Ready For A Forty, who is G2-placed at 7f and has won 3 straight stakes races at 8-8.5f on the dirt.
Expectations: It’s nice to see A Queen is Born pick up a win after 3 very disappointing allowance tries, but that enthusiasm is tempered a bit by the win coming in a 4 horse hot allowance against 3 *CPU horses. It’s certainly possible that she just needed a tune-up and will blast ahead here. But her past performances haven’t really put her in the same class as some of her competition here. Her 75 SP career high is well off the best here, and she’s struggled mightily keeping up with other competition at this distance. I’ll need to pass here.
Watch Level: Low
That’s the field for this NW3L allowance. There are a lot of talented fillies here, and most of this field has a real chance to win. On paper, there looks to be a lot of speed in here. My guess is that the most speed belongs to either Battle Thy Mom or Henty Kelee, so I expect one of them to be the pacesetter, while Safety Guide and Banished From Hell may push them as well. But that kind of pace sets up well for those coming from the back. I think Carson’s Prayer, who should be flying from way back late, will get a good trip, but ultimately I’m siding with Street Sense Lady here, who I think will get first run. My predictions are: (1) Street Sense Lady; (2) Carson’s Prayer; (3) Battle Thy Mom. But this is anyone’s race.
Other races to watch this weekend: