ESPN.com - Horse Racing - Katdogawn can challenge Light Jig

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Friday, October 1
Katdogawn can challenge Light Jig




ARCADIA, Calif. -- To start in the $1 million Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Lone Star Park on Oct. 30, Katdogawn would need to be supplemented for $90,000. Although the fee is steep, Katdogawn can finance the investment with a victory in Saturday's $500,000 Yellow Ribbon Stakes at Santa Anita.

The field of 10 includes several Breeders' Cup hopefuls, as well as a few South American-bred mares unlikely to try the Breeders' Cup even if they win on Saturday.

The top candidates with Breeders' Cup aspirations are Katdogawn, second in the Palomar Breeders' Cup Handicap at Del Mar on Sept. 4; Light Jig, the winner of the Beverly Hills Handicap at Hollywood Park in July; and Amorama, the winner of the Del Mar Oaks in August.

Noches de Rosa, the winner of the Gamely Breeders' Cup Handicap in May, and Notting Hill, third in the John Mabee Handicap at Del Mar, are seeking to plunder a rich prize in the Yellow Ribbon.

Run over 1 1/4 miles on turf, the Yellow Ribbon is California's top prep for the Filly and Mare Turf.

The Yellow Ribbon is part of a strong card that features two other prep races for the Breeders' Cup - the $500,000 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap and the $200,000 Oak Leaf Stakes for 2-year-old fillies. First post on the 10-race program is 12:30 p.m. There is a guaranteed pick four pool of $400,000 on the day's last four races.

In the Yellow Ribbon, Light Jig may go favored in what should be an excellent betting race. She won her U.S. stakes debut in the Beverly Hills on June 27, but was only sixth as the favorite in the John Mabee Handicap at Del Mar in July. Trainer Bobby Frankel said she was suffering from the effects of colic at the time.

Trainer Jim Cassidy admits that Katdogawn will need to improve to be a factor in the Yellow Ribbon, but insists she has done just that in recent weeks.

Katdogawn has 1 victory in 7 starts this year. The win came when she was promoted from second to first in the Santa Ana Handicap in March. Katdogawn finished three-quarters of a length behind Etoile Montante in the Palomar.

"It was a great second," Cassidy said. "She seems to be getting bigger and stronger. I have trained her more for this race than any other race, and I had to. She was trying to kill somebody.

"I think she can win. If she gets away and is in good position, she'll be very tough."

Noches de Rosa and Notting Hill are likely to set the pace, which would help the 3-year-old Amorama, who is making her first start against older fillies and mares.

Trainer Julio Canani chose the Yellow Ribbon over a Grade 1 stakes for strictly 3-year-old fillies, the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at Keeneland on Oct. 16, because he did not want to ship Amorama.

"What if she gets off the plane and doesn't eat for a week?" he said. "Two more months and she'll be running against older fillies all the time."

Amorama displayed a remarkable rally to win the Del Mar Oaks over 1 1/8 miles on turf, closing seven lengths in the final half-mile to win by a nose. The victory marked her first stakes win.



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