Saturday, June 19, 2010

Of Surface and Distance

Five furlongs over the turf. Of all the races we entered the past 10-days, this is the one that filled. After several attempts of trying to get $10,000 and $16,000 Starter Allowances to fill - at a nice 6 furlongs on the dirt (though 6.5 - 7 would be my preference but beggars can't be choosers), Tabby Lane will be going in a $20,000 Claiming race on Father's Day. That's the eighth at Canterbury Park if you're scoring at home. Even this race wouldn't have had such a nice size field if Bernell Rhone, Miguel Silva and Doug Oliver having two a piece in the field.

Here is how we line up tomorrow:

Rio Brilla (Silva/Rivera) - Has had 2 trips over the Canterbury surface in $7500 Claiming races and wasn't closer than 3rd. Could be asking a lot from this one.

Marsh Marigold (Scherbenske/Martin) - One of three Minn-breds in this open race. Was competitive at this level and surface last summer and coming off of two off the board finishes at Arlington at $25,000.

Katie is Smart (Domenosky/Cardoso) - Lasid off since February, she comes back after racing against slightly higher company in New Mexico. Two straight wins in a return to sprinting was followed up by two subpar efforts before the rest.

Summer Nights (Silva/Stevens) - Seven time winner was the only filly to finish behind Tabby Lane in her Canterbury debut (bless her!). Is three for five lifetime over the turf with on place. Only finishes off the board were at 7.5 furlongs and a mile. A definite threat here cutting back in distance.

Blumin Beauty (Oliver/Eikleberry) - Has had it handed to her in stakes company recently, but a tigress at the $30,000 level. Lone turf effort on her sheet was sub par, but she's won twice over the Canterbury sod.

Lilys Shadow (Rhone/Arterburn) - The "other" Rhone horse, this one has an interesting past. Broke maiden at CBY at first asking, but DQ'd to 2nd. She simply came back and did it again next out at Remington. She followed that with a second and a win in $28500 Allowance races but was flat in a $35,000 Optional Claiming race after which she was laid off for six months. Works don't indicate she's ready, but could be a sleeper later in the meet.

Lil Dish (Oliver/Keith) - A monster winner last out in a $7500 Claiming race after narrowly missing at that level in Canterbury debut, she really steps up here. She's tried higher and won before, but it was many starts back.


Prissy Proxy (Reedy/Bell) - This lightly raced and often rested yet speedy filly is your morning line, and probably post time, favorite. Won back to back at Tampa, the first after an eight month layoff at $8,000 Claiming and then a huge jump in a move onto the turf to a $32,000 Optional Claiming. She's going to want to roll from the break, but that's going to be tough from post 9.

I have no idea how to assess Tabby's chances in this one. She needs a race and this was the one we were able to get filled. It's a relatively unfamiliar surface (she had one try on the turf last year where she finished 4th, 2 lengths out on a yielding Meadowlands course) at a distance that's not ideal which isn't really the way you want to look at a race. However all the signs are not bad. She had an excellent work on the 16th (3 furlongs in :35.8). As you can imagine there is speed aplenty in the field with Prissy Proxy, Lil Dish, Summer Nights, Katie is Smart and Rio Brilla all wanting the front end. It's hard to imagine that at least a couple of these aren't going to hook up on the front end. The question is, will there be enough room for Tabby to run them down the lane?

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