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Luna Grande Ready for Starlet

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Luna Grande, who joined the Kristin Mulhall stable here Sunday after being purchased privately in Florida for Pennsylvania owner Jim Hess, is ready for her biggest test in the $300,000 Hollywood Starlet, a Grade I test for 2-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track Saturday.


“I was worried about her handling the distance when we first got her, but after galloping her, I don’t think that will be an issue,” said Mulhall Thursday after galloping the filly the past two mornings. “She’s a pretty-moving filly with big strides. We’ll take a hold of her and make one run.”


Luna Grande drew post four in a field of eight and will be ridden by Victor Espinoza. The Florida-bred daughter of Mass Media out of the Fortunate Prospect mare Dream Lady Dream has recorded two firsts and three seconds in eight starts at Calder. She rallied to win a 5 ½-furlong allowance race in her last start on November 20.


The only other newcomer in the lineup is speedster Nina Fever, who has been here for several weeks in the Blake Heap barn after being sent west from Kentucky by trainer Wesley Ward. Victorious in five of eight starts--including three of four on synthetics--Nina Fever will leave from post two with Garrett Gomez.


Rafael Bejarano, who won the race last year aboard Blind Luck, seeks his third Starlet win in four years aboard Sharp Cat Stakes winner May Day Rose, who leaves from post three.

 

 

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