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Sweet Seventeen 8-5 Busher Favorite

Sweet Seventeen, who missed scoring her first stakes victory by a neck in last month’s Busanda, returns to Aqueduct Racetrack for another attempt Saturday afternoon when she heads a field of seven 3-year-old fillies in the $75,000 Busher.

 

Trained by H. Graham Motion for Mrs. John Oxley, Sweet Seventeen set the pace as the favorite in the one-mile, 70-yard Busanda on January 7 but was caught in the late stages by Captivating Lass.

 

“She’s been slow switching leads, and I think it cost her the last race,” said Motion of the bay daughter of Hard Spun. “She’s improved the last three or four weeks, however. I toyed with the idea of shipping her to Florida and running on grass because she ran so well on the synthetic, but thought this was the more frugal route. We can try grass down the road.”

 

The homebred filly broke her maiden at first asking at Laurel Park in September, and next posted an impressive 4 ¾-length allowance win over the synthetic surface at Keeneland on October 11. She wrapped up her juvenile campaign by rallying from far back to finish second in the Glorious Song at Woodbine a month later.

 

“I’ve been very pleased with her,” said Motion. “Her races have been pretty well spaced out, and she’s done well since she’s been up here. She’s very honest and game.”

 

Sweet Seventeen, the 8-5 favorite, drew the rail with Alan Garcia aboard for the first time.

 

WinStar Farm’s entry of Lisa T. and Off Limits is the 2-1 second choice in the 1 1/16-mile Busher, with Lisa T. drawing post position 3 under Cornelio Velazquez and Off Limits post position 4 with Junior Alvarado in the irons.

 

Trained by Todd Pletcher, Lisa T. has made two tours of the Big A’s inner track, breaking her maiden going one mile, 70 yards on December 11 in her third start and finishing third behind Singlet in the six-furlong Dearly Precious earlier this month. Off Limits, from Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott’s barn, will be making her stakes debut after finishing fourth in an optional claimer at Gulfstream Park on February 1.

 

Darley Stable’s Better Lucky is stretching out off a pair of inner-track sprints, having broken her maiden on December 11 and finishing a non-threatening fifth in the Ruthless behind Agave Kiss on January 14. Eddie Castro has the mount aboard the Ghostzapper filly, who drew post position 5 at 4-1.

 

Rounding out the field is Plum, who closed out her juvenile campaign with three straight triumphs at Laurel Park, including the Maryland Juvenile Fillies Championship; Super Quiet, another Mid-Atlantic invader who will be making her fourth start of the year and first in a stakes, and Marvelous Margaret, who was supplemented to the race and enters the Busher off a hard-fought maiden victory on January 25.

 

The field for the $75,000 Busher:

Prog. #  PP

Horse

Jockey

Wgt

Trainer

Odds

1                 3

Lisa T.

C Velasquez

116

T A Pletcher

 2-1

1a               4

Off Limits

J Alvarado

116

W I Mott

 2-1

2                 1

Sweet Seventeen

A Garcia

116

H. Graham Motion

 8-5

3                 2

Marvelous Margaret

R Curatolo

116

C Martin

12-1

4                 5

Better Lucky

E Castro

116

T Albertrani

 4-1

5                 6

Plum

T L Dunkelberger

120

R Jenkins

 6-1

6                 7

Super Quiet

G R Delgado

118

G A Wood, II

15-1

1 and 1a-coupled

 

 

 

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