Thursday, April 11, 2013
Madison Stakes looks wide open
By Claire Novak
This year's edition of the $300,000 Madison Stakes may not feature a superstar such as 2012 winner Groupie Doll, but 10 older fillies and mares will provide a good wagering event April 13 at Keeneland.
The seven-furlong Madison, which will go as the eighth on a 12-race card with an approximate post time of 3:35 p.m. EDT, features two previous stakes winners -- but both are coming off subpar efforts.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey's homebred Holiday for Kitten seeks her third stakes victory at Keeneland, but may need a race while making her first start of 2013. Her most recent start Sept. 28 produced an 11th-place finish in the Presque Isle Masters Stakes at Presque Isle Downs. The 5-year-old daughter of Kitten's Joy excels sprinting six furlongs or less. Trained by Wesley Ward, she won the Giant's Causeway Stakes in April 2011 and came back that fall to win the Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes.
Holiday for Kitten breaks from post 3 and will be ridden by Elvis Trujillo at morning line odds of 9-2.
Shumoos, trained by Ben Cecil for Fawzi Abdulla Nass, is the other stakes winner in the field. She took a Group 2 event in Britain as a 2-year-old, and came to the U.S. to make her debut finishing second against males in the 2011 Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile Sprint at Churchill Downs. The Distorted Humor filly did not return to the races for more than 14 months, winning an allowance sprint at Santa Anita Park in January.
Third in her most recent start in the Las Flores Stakes in March, Shumoos will break from post position 7 under Garrett Gomez at odds of 4-1.
From the far outside, Michele Nevin trainee Fantasy of Flight is the lukewarm 7-2 favorite. The 4-year-old Tiznow filly closed from fourth after being steadied to get second by 3 1/2 lengths to Golden Mystery in the Feb. 10 Hurricane Bertie Stakes at Gulfstream Park, her most recent start for IEAH Stables and Sanford H. Robbins.
One of the favorite's three victories was a one-length score at Keeneland last spring going seven furlongs. Jockey Javier Castellano rides.
Dangerous speed on the rail could come from Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners' Byrama, who was third last time out in the Feb. 18 Buena Vista Stakes going a mile on the turf at Santa Anita for trainer Simon Callaghan. In her lone Polytrack start, the British-bred daughter of Byron finished third in the C.E.R.F. Stakes at Del Mar.
Byrama has run against top West Coast contenders such as Reneesgotzip (in the C.E.R.F.) and Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint winner Mizdirection. Joel Rosario rides.
Completing the field are Queen's Award, Kune Kune, Last Full Measure, Jamaican Smoke, Drama Drama, and Dr. Diamonds Prize.