Tonight Tabby Lane will be taking on five foes at Canterbury Park. We all know that Tabs has not been the same filly since coming north. Could be that she's a horse for a course (Tampa Bay Downs). Could be she doesn't like it in Minnesota (as if!). Could be as she's matured she needs a bit longer to go to unwind (we shall see).
Here is how the competition stacks up:
1. Lookouthereicome (King/Goodwin): Unusual class jump last time out after showing next to nothing in lower levels. She didn't win, but she did close nicely near the end showing some signs of life. Could be she likes the turf course? She'll stretch out a bit further and should be coming from well off the pace.
2. TABBY LANE (RHONE/BUTLER)
3. Playmeamelodi (Van Winkle/Rivera): Second race back off the claim for the Van Winkle barn, she's been a very consistent mare at generally higher levels of competition. Possible warning sign could be the lowest Beyer in last 11 starts and first finish worse than 4th in that same time period or could be just the adjuetment to a new barn. She tried to come from further back than usual last trip as well, something she's not used to doing. I think we can look for her to press the pace again. Very dangerous if last race was an anomoly.
4. Fancy Princess (Donlin/Cardoso): Second in the Morning Line and first in your assesment of early speed in the race. I think there should be some concern about this mare getting out to an early and easy lead and being able to turn away all contenders in the lane.
5. Ringaround (Miller/Olesiak): Faded badly in last few and now being asked to go even further. Possible plus is that the class level should be close based upon her last two on the turf.
6. Fine Approval (Ryno/Luark): After not showing much at Canterbury this year (like I should talk, right?) she was pulled up and vanned off three weeks ago. Now moving up in class on her return to the races. She does show a decent work so hopefully she's recovered from whatever ailed her in July. Tough to choose in this one.
We shall see. As everyone knows I've been miserable at predicting the outcome of her races so far. Personally I love this spot. I think she's going to like the added distance and her last out over the turf showed that she didn't mind running on it. The result may not say so, but her action was much improved and she actually made a nice effort down the lane. A trainer not involved in Tabby made mention to me that we may have picked her up at just the right time. She was sharp and ready and we managed to nail some nice finishes right away. She moved north, settled in and then ran what turned out to be over her head for a while which is why we've had such poor performance from her. Maybe now she's at her proper level? I'm not inclined to disagree at this point.
I'm anxious to see how she does on the stretch out, but I am feeling very good about this one. The race will tell the tale. If things don't work out as hoped, then we'll take some vacation time, regroup and get ready for Tampa Bay.