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Ten Likely for QE II Challenge Cup

07 October 2011. #7 Stephanie's Kitten and John Velasquez win the 60th running of the Darley Alcibiades, GRI $400,000 at Keeneland Racecourse for owner/breeder Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey. This is the first Grade I winner for sire, Kitten's Joy.

Grade 1 winners Lady of Shamrock, Samitar (GB) and Stephanie’s Kitten are among 10 fillies whose connections have accepted invitations to participate in the 29th running of the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) to be held Saturday, October 13.

The race for 3-year-old fillies, won last year by Together (IRE), is contested at 1 1/8 miles on the turf. Of the 10 invitees, nine are graded or group stakes winners.

Hronis Racing’s Lady of Shamrock, trained by John Sadler, has won the Del Mar Oaks (G1) and the American Oaks (G1) in her past two starts and earlier in the year won the Providencia (G3).

Martin Schwartz’s Samitar won the Garden City (G1) at Belmont Park in her most recent start and prior to coming to the United States won the Irish One Thousand Guineas (Group 1) at the Curragh. Chad Brown now trains Samitar.

Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s Stephanie’s Kitten, winner of the Lake Placid (G2) in her most recent start, won the Darley Alcibiades (G1) on Keeneland’s main track last fall prior to winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G2) at Churchill Downs. Wayne Catalano trains Stephanie’s Kitten.

Other invitees are Darley Stable’s Better Lucky, winner of the Sands Point (G2); G. Watts Humphrey Jr. and the Louise Ireland Humphrey Revocable Trust-2008’s Centre Court, winner of the Lake George (G2) and Regret (G3);  Jerry Frankel, Ronald Frankel, Steve Laymon and Bradley Thoroughbreds’ Dayatthespa,  winner of the Herecomesthebride (G3) and Appalachian (G3); Team Block’s Leading Astray, winner of the Pucker Up (G3); Southern Equine Stable and Mike Smith’s Open Water; Caroline Forgason’s Somali Lemonade, winner of the JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G3); and Richard Santulli’s Tannery (IRE), a Group 3 winner in Ireland.

Entries for the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup will be taken Wednesday.



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Centre Court, an invitee to the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1), worked five furlongs around the “dogs” in 1:01.60 over a turf course labeled firm.

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