Executiveprivilege will try for her third Grade I win of 2012 when she takes on seven other 2-year-old fillies in the $500,000-guaranteed Hollywood Starlet Saturday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Scheduled at 1 1/16 miles over Cushion Track, the Starlet is the richer of two graded stakes to be offered on the next-to-last Saturday of the Autumn meet. Older fillies and mares will get together in the $200,000 Bayakoa Stakes. A Grade II, the Bayakoa, which is presented by the Oak Tree Racing Association, will also be run at 1 1/16 miles over Cushion Track.
The 32nd Bayakoa goes as the sixth of 10 races while the Starlet is the ninth. Post time is 12:30 p.m. Track gates at Betfair Hollywood Park will open at 10 a.m. for simulcasts.
Every Saturday during the Autumn season features a Pick Six pool that is guaranteed at $150,000. If the pool exceeds $200,000, $1 food and drink Happy Hour specials will be available at Whittingham’s Pub. The average pool size through the first four weeks of the season was $229,989.
Additionally, a single winning Pick Six ticket –purchased either at Betfair Hollywood Park or through Television Games Network (TVG) – will earn a bonus – a 2013 Toyota Prius courtesy of Toyota of Orange.
Owned by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman and trained by Hall of Famer, Executiveprivilege suffered her first defeat – after five wins – when second, one length behind Beholder, in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Nov. 2.
If successful Saturday, the daughter of First Samurai and the Unaccounted For mare Refugee would become the lone 2-year-old filly in the country with three Grade I wins – she has already captured the Del Mar Debutante and Chandelier Stakes at Santa Anita – and strengthen her case for an Eclipse Award as champion of the division.
An earner of $900,000, Executiveprivilege could provide Baffert with his third Starlet victory, following Excellent Meeting (1998) and Habibti (2001).
Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith, who replaced Rafael Bejarano on Game On Dude for last weekend’s victory in the Native Diver Stakes, will take over on Executiveprivilege as the filly tries to emulate Killer Graces, who won both the Landaluce and Starlet in 2011.
Baffert will also be represented by impressive first out winner Blonde Fog.
Owned by Pegram and Mark DeDomenico LLC, the Divine Park filly out of the Eltish mare Betty’s Solutions won by 12 ½ lengths at the Starlet distance Oct. 28 at Santa Anita. The win was worth $28,200.
Miss Empire returns to Cushion Track for owners Gary and Cecil Barber and Kevin Tsujihara and trainer Peter Miller after trailing in the Grade III Miesque on turf Nov. 24.
The daughter of Empire Maker and the Rajab mare Miss Excitement has won two of eight and earned $207,120. One of her wins came in the Cinderella Stakes June 16 in her second career outing.
Miller is also scheduled to start Rhodium. Owned by a partnership that includes Roncelli Family Trust, David Bernsen and Wire to Wire To Wire Stables, the gray daughter of Flashy Bull and the Swiss Yodeler mare Rockin On has won once in six attempts and earned $44,230.
Midnight Ballet, the upset winner of the Sharp Cat – at the Starlet distance – Nov. 11 in her first Cushion Track attempt, will be seeking her third win in four races for Stoneway Farm LLC and trainer Tom Proctor. The Midnight Lute filly out of the Unbridled’s Song mare Buzz Song has earned $103,000.
Scarlet Strike will try to rebound after finishing third at 4-5 in the Sharp Cat. Owned by John Carver, Green Smith and Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, the daughter of Smart Strike and the French Deputy mare Scarlet Tango is 1-for-5 with earnings of $124,240.
The Kentucky bred finished second in the Chandelier prior to her 1 ¼ length defeat in the Sharp Cat.
Second at 11-1 in the Sharp Cat, Renee’s Titan will be trying for her second victory at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Owned by Zillah Reddam and trained by Doug O’Neill, the Bernstein filly out of the Tiznow mare Titan Queen has won once in five tries and earned $55,400. She broke her maiden against $50,000 claimers by 4 ½ lengths in her career debut June 21. She was purchased privately after that race by her current connections from owner-breeder John Liviakis and trainer Melody Conlon.
Supplemented to the Starlet at a cost of $10,000 – with an additional $10,000 to start – Pure Fun ships to California for Susan McPeek’s Magdalena Racing and trainer Ken McPeek. The Pure Prize filly out of the Key to the Mint mare Chelsea Green has won two seven and earned $83,599. She won an optional claimer by 9 ¼ lengths Nov. 24 at Churchill Downs. She has never competed over a synthetic surface.
From inside out, the field for the Hollywood Starlet: Pure Fun, Garrett Gomez rides, 120 pounds; Miss Empire, Kevin Krigger, 120; Scarlet Strike, Joe Talamo, 120; Blonde Fog, Martin Garcia, 120; Midnight Ballet, Julien Leparoux, 120; Executiveprivilege, Mike Smith, 120; Renee’s Titan, Tyler Baze, 120 and Rhodium, Rafael Bejarano, 120.