Trainer Chad Brown could saddle as many as three runners in Saturday’s graded stakes at Belmont Park, with the British-bred Samitar expected to make her debut for Brown in the Grade 1, $300,000 Garden City at 1 1/8 miles on the inner turf, and French-breds Kya One and Whipsaw City both under consideration for the Grade 3, $150,000 Noble Damsel run at a mile over the Widener course.
Samitar, a Group 1 winner in Ireland, was previously
trained by Mick Channon, who sent the filly out for her North American
debut in the Grade 2 Lake George Stakes on July 25 at Saratoga Race
Course, a race Brown watched with interest. The 3-year-old Rock of
Gibraltar filly endured an eventful trip and was third in a blanket
finish where less than 1 ½ lengths separated the top five.
“It wasn’t for me, though I did watch the race,” Brown
said. “She got bumped around, and it was kind of a weirdly run race
because she had no cover. I thought she fought well. Now, we’ve had her
in our care and we’re getting to know her a little bit. She seems to
be training well.”
Samitar is owned by Martin Schwartz, as is Whipsaw City,
one of two fillies Brown is considering for the Grade 3 Noble Damsel.
The 4-year-old daughter of Elusive City has not raced since finishing
second by a half-length to Blue Maiden in the Glowing Honor overnight
stakes on June 28 at Belmont.
“She had shed a frog and missed one race in Saratoga in the first
book,” Brown said. “Then I put her in a sprint stake in the last book,
and the race didn’t fill. So now I’m kind of looking for a race for
her. She’s been training super, so we might take a shot at the one-turn
Both of Whipsaw City’s North American victories came at a
mile on turf at Gulfstream Park earlier this year. She was fifth
over the artificial surface at Keeneland in the Grade 1, seven-furlong
Vinery Madison on April 12 and sixth in the Grade 3, 1 1/16-mile Violet
Stakes on the grass on Memorial Day at Monmouth Park.
The Noble Damsel could be the North American debut for
Mackie Racing’s Kya One, a stakes winner in France who has been in
Brown’s care since late July.
“I maybe haven’t had her quite as long as I would like
before debuting her here, but she’s doing well and I might put her in
there and take a look,” Brown said. “We’ll see. It seems like she might
be better at further distances, but in her works she seems like she
has some turn of foot and it might be a good spot to get her started
in. I’m still kind of learning a few things about her, but she is
training well. It might be a good spot to get a race into her and see
where we are.”
A 4-year-old One Cool Cat filly, Kya One was sixth,
beaten 2 ½ lengths, in the Group 2 Prix Corrida at Saint-Cloud
Racecourse outside Paris on May 28, her most recent start. That race
was against fillies, but she competed against colts in her three
previous starts, winning the Prix Jacques Laffitte Stakes at
Maisons-Laffitte Racecourse on April 5.
“She’s got some decent running lines,” Brown said. “She
kept good company over there and she’s been running with boys. The last
one was against fillies, beat two [and a half] lengths, steadied
repeatedly. She’s a pretty nice horse. Like I said, she might be better
suited going longer though, so she’s not a definite for the race.”