Tabby gets some class relief as she continues her 5 year old season Friday at Tampa Bay Downs. She had a respectable debut two starts back but fizzled last out. Today she gets some class relief and another furlong in distance – both which should be helpful.
Here’s a look at the field:
1 Purita (Vargas) – Off since September, she came back on February 26th and placed third at this level in her return coming off the pace. A little out of character for this front runner but belied the time off. Certainly eligible to improve off of that one.
2. I Found Sweetiepie (Centeno) – Making her third start back off her winter vacation, she has roughly the same pattern as Tabby: a decent debut and flat fifth last out. Also dropping in from the $8,000 level, albeit from a non-winners of two lifetime rather than the open category.
3. Wildfire Fast (Ramos) – Another second back after a layoff, she spotted her last field 13 lengths early and was able to close to within 2 lengths. She was beating much better at Suffolk in ’09 but then only started 4 times, showing nothing while progressively dropping, in 2010. Behind a quick pace, she has a shot.
4. Beautiful Insight (Montalvo) – Eligible for a non-winners of two lifetime, she sporadically shows signs of life though it’s hard to predict when those days will be.
5. What A Pal (Morales) – Tepid morning line favorite at 7-2 (Tabby is second choice at 4-1) she’s been ion contention in every race she’s been in this year but is still trying to find her way. She was second at this level two back at the same seven furlong distance. Should be stalking the early pace.
6. Storm Vixen (Gonzalez) – Hard to like anything about her, beaten 22 lengths last out and 16 ½ lengths two back at $5000. Her best effort was at seven furlongs which appears to be her only plus.
7. Proud Student (Allen, Jr.) – Third back off the layoff, she faded badly in her first starts back to the races. Hard to see her improve, she gets a jockey change and stretches out. At one point she beat $15,000 claimers at Mountaineer but hasn’t won since.
8. Graemy (Rosario) – Finished just behind Tabs last out after dropping in from $20,000. Certainly not the same horse since laying off last summer.
9. Chubby (Lenclud) – Had a nice return to the races in December, finishing 2nd at this level but flat in her last two. Didn’t embarrass herself and could be in the mix with this group.
10. Wicked Sweet (Galviz) – Drilled in her first two back to the races, she switched trainers before her last out and promptly lost by 17 ¼.
11. TABBY LANE (Butler)
12. Out of Wine (Cotto) – Finished 8th in Tabby’s last behind both Tabby and Graemy, though it was her first back after a layoff. She should improve a bit here, but at this level at Calder before the layoff she finished nearly 30 out of it.
I’ve given up predicting if Tabby can win. She can, but we’ll see if her head is in the game more this time out. If she gets herself in the mix early I like our chances, but she hasn’t allowed herself to be in the early mix – much to Bernell and Dean’s chagrin. There is not a lot of early pace in here and it appears as if all the contenders want to come from off the pace but only one’s nose is going to get to the wire first. I’m hoping that this is the race that turns it back around for Tabby Lane.