Clark Brewster’s Cherokee Queen, who ruled over rivals in the
$75,000 Blushing K. D. Handicap on Dec. 17 at Fair Grounds, has been installed as the lukewarm 3-1 choice in Saturday’s featured
$75,000 Marie Krantz Memorial Handicap based on that performance.
Past heroines of the Marie Krantz Memorial, for older fillies and mares at about 1 1/16-miles over the local
Stall-Wilson turf course, include the legendary Louisiana-bred
Hallowed Dreams, owned by
Johnny Gaspard and Lloyd Romero, who won the race 11 years ago when it
was run as the Victoria Lass Stakes. The race was renamed in 2004 in
honor of the late former chairman of the board
of the Fair Grounds Corporation.
Cherokee Queen, winner of Gulfstream’s
Grade III Suwannee River
last year, was purchased by her present connections primarily as a
broodmare prospect, but the decision was made to keep her racing at
least temporarily this winter under the care of conditioner
Steve Margolis. With that
in mind, they have decided to accept the assigned top impost of 122
pounds in the Marie Krantz, most of which will be made up by jockey
Shaun Bridgmohan, who rode the mare with justified confidence in the Blushing K. D.
Likely to provide strong competition for Cherokee Queen in the Krantz Memorial is Steve Asmussen’s
Pleasantly Blessed, pegged
as the 4-1 second choice in the early line. Trained by her owner, the
8-year-old Pleasant Tap mare mounted a serious stretch challenge in the
Blushing K. D., missed matching the winner
by a neck but gained the place under Rosie Napravnik, who will be in the saddle once again Saturday. She gets in Saturday with 116 pounds.
Named to oppose the top two, with jockeys and weights assigned, are: William and Graydon Patterson’s
Juanita, Miguel Mena (118); Phillip Maas’s
A She’s Adorable, James Graham (117); Wertheimer and Frere’s
Weekend Party, Brian Hernandez Jr. (115); Daniel Family Farms’
Skipping Town, Robby Albarado (114); John Fielding and Frederick Hertrich II’s
Poof Too, Jesse Campbell (114); Bobby Flay’s
Countess Lemonade, Shane Sellers (114); and Greg and Kim Boarman’s
Miss Shananiegans, Iram Diego (113).
these, the Stidham-trained pair of A She’s Adorable and Weekend Party,
although uncoupled in the wagering, are both worthy of consideration.
The former raced wide when fifth in the Blushing K. D. and the latter,
beaten less than a length when fourth, made the pace before being run
down in the last strides.