Lady of Shamrock
, a multiple Grade I winner who has been idle since
running a close fifth in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf
on Nov. 2, heads a competitive field of six older fillies and mares
entered in Sunday’s Grade II, $150,000 Santa Ana Stakes at 1 1/8 miles
A deep closer, Lady of Shamrock, who is trained by John Sadler
and will be handled by her regular rider Mike Smith, will attempt to
take advantage of what the connections hope is a lively early pace.
“She’s training well and she loves the course,” said Sadler on
Thursday. “We gave her a little break after the Breeders’ Cup. We’ve
got a long year and we’ve got the Breeders’ Cup back here in November,
so we didn’t want to start her too early.”
The likely speed in the race is California-bred A Jealous Woman,
a multiple stakes winner who ran a disappointing seventh in the Grade
II Buena Vista Stakes on Feb. 18. Although she’s likely to make the
early lead in the Santa Ana, A Jealous Woman could be pressed by Arizona
shipper Smarty B, or by Irish-bred Quiet Oasis, who has been on the
shelf since winning the Grade II Royal Heroine Mile on July 7 at Betfair
The complete field for the Grade II Santa Ana Stakes from the rail out is as follows:
LADY OF SHAMROCK
A back to back winner of the Grade I American and Del Mar Oaks’
this past summer, the 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly by Scat Daddy came
within a nose of winning five stakes in 2012 and has three wins from
four starts over the Santa Anita lawn.
Lady of Shamrock, who is owned by Hronis Racing LLC, has a
steady series of turf drills for her return, but her most recent work
came on the main track, a seven furlong move in 1:25.80 on March 17.
Idle since running fifth in the 1 ¼ miles turf Breeders’ Cup
Filly & Mare Turf, a race in which she had to wait for racing room a
furlong out, Lady of Shamrock came running and lost by just 2 ½
lengths. If she gets a lively pace to run at, she should be very tough
on Sunday. With a record of 11-6-1-1, she has earnings of $705,400.
Well beaten by Lady of Shamrock four starts back in the Grade I
Del Mar Oaks on Aug. 18, Long Face ran a non-threatening fifth behind
Grade I winner Mizdirection in the Grade II Buena Vista Stakes on Feb.
Owned by Robert Trussell, Jr. and trained by Patrick Biancone,
Long Face is a 4-year-old filly by Whywhywhy who will be ridden for the
first time by Gary Stevens. Like Lady of Shamrock, Long Face would
benefit from a fast pace but class remains a question as she in winless
in four added-money attempts.
Long Face has earnings of $127,090, from a lifetime mark of 10-3-1-0.
Trained by Ben Cecil, the 5-year-old Irish-bred mare has three
wins from six stateside starts and has been idle since winning the Grade
II Royal Heroine Mile (turf) on July 7 at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Although she won the Royal Heroine from off the pace, Quiet Oasis has
plenty of natural speed and has a win and a second from two starts over
the Santa Anita turf.
Owned by Reddam Racing LLC, she’ll be ridden by Mario Gutierrez,
who was aboard for the Royal Heroine win, as well as a second place
finish in the Grade I Gamely Stakes on May 28 and a win in the Grade III
Wilshire Handicap April 29.
Quiet Oasis, who had one win from three starts in England and Ireland, is 10-4-2-1 overall, with earnings of $262,379.
Based at Turf Paradise in Phoenix, Smarty B, a 4-year-old
Kentucky-bred filly by Smarty Jones, has been on a tear of late for
trainer Dan McFarlane, as she is just a nose shy of winning her last
four races. Second, beaten a nose in her most recent start, the $35,000
Sun City Handicap at one mile on turf Feb. 16, Smarty B worked a bullet
five furlongs in 59.60 on Thursday at Turf Paradise and should be
forwardly placed in the Santa Ana.
Well traveled, she broke her maiden for a $25,000 claiming tag
at Prairie Meadows on June 14, and in her first try on turf, won a first
condition allowance going a mile and a sixteenth at Ellis Park on Aug.
An intense competitor, Smarty B gets a big test for class in her
first graded stakes attempt on Sunday. Owned by Fleming or Mathews or
Santoro, she has four wins on turf and an overall mark of 11-5-3-1, with
earnings of $92,163.
A JEALOUS WOMAN
The 7-year-old California-bred mare by Muqtarib has solid
credentials and could be the speed in the field. Second in the Grade II
Goldikova Stakes on Nov. 4, A Jealous Woman was a game winner of the
$92,000 Megahertz Stakes going one mile on turf Jan. 19.
Her most recent race was a huge disappointment, as she faded
badly to finish seventh, beaten 15 ¼ lengths, in the Grade II Buena
Vista Stakes on Feb. 18. Trainer Francis Meza ascribed the poor
performance to a throat ailment and her stable star came back to work a
bullet six furlongs on turf in 1:12.60 on March 11.
Owned by Three Cent Stable or Niles Dickey LLC, she will again
be handled by veteran Brice Blanc, who has won with her on four
occasions. With five wins, two seconds and two thirds over the course,
her overall mark stands at 20-8-3-3, with earnings of $444,106.
A winner of the $100,000 Valentine Dancer Stakes for statebreds
going one mile on turf Jan. 26, Tiz Flirtatious appears fresh and
dangerous from post position six. Trained by Marty Jones, the
5-year-old mare by Tizbud has a strong stretch kick and has proven
worthy in graded stakes competition.
A solid second in the Grade III Robert J. Frankel Stakes going 1
1/8 miles on turf Dec. 30, she was a fast-finishing second, beaten one
length, in the Grade I, one mile turf Matriarch Stakes on Nov. 25.
With regular rider Rafael Bejarano out of town Sunday, Tiz
Flirtatious will be handled for the first time by Julien Leparoux.
Owned and bred by Pamela Ziebarth, she has two wins and a second-place
finish over the course. With earnings of $334,800, her overall mark
stands at 8-5-2-1.
The complete field for the Grade II Santa Ana Stakes, to be run
as the seventh on a nine-race program Sunday, with jockey and weights in
post position order: Lady of Shamrock, Mike Smith, 120; Long Face,
Gary Stevens, 118; Quiet Oasis, Mario Gutierrez, 120; Smarty B, Tyler
Baze, 118; A Jealous Woman, Brice Blanc, 118, and Tiz Flirtatious,
Julien Leparoux, 118.