The Grade III Pucker Up Stakes has long been one of Arlington Park’s more popular events among horsemen from around the country and the 2011 event is proving no exception with an overflow field of 14 slated to head postward in Saturday’s $100,000 race for 3-year-old fillies at a mile and an eighth on the turf.
Glen Hill Farm’s Marketing Mix could find herself favored after posting an impressive victory against Ontario-bred rivals in the $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine Race Course. The Tom Proctor-trained daughter of Medaglia d’Oro also boasts in-the-money finishes in the $150,000 Fury Stakes and the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks since breaking her maiden at Keeneland in April. Marketing Mix will be ridden for the first time by Junior Alvarado.
Millennium Farms’ Summer Savory returns to her Chicago homebase after finishing sixth in the Grade III Ontario Colleen Stakes at Woodbine last month. Prior to that, the daughter of Horse Chestnut ran second beaten only half a length in the Grade III Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs. The Mike Stidham trainee is two-for-two over the Arlington turf, breaking her maiden here in May and capturing a first-level allowance race the following month. Leading rider James Graham has the mount.
Jean & Ted Barlas and Mike Porcaro’s Trac N Jam also comes home after a disappointing run in her last start, a fifth-place finish in the Grade II Lake Placid Stakes at Saratoga. In her previous start, the daughter of El Corredor won the $125,000 Indiana Distaff at Indiana Downs. The Andy Hansen pupil has never been worse than second in three starts over the Arlington green including a pair of June victories. Jermaine Bridgmohan is named.
Herman Van Den Broeck’s Angelica Zapata comes into the Pucker Up off a second-place finish in the $50,000 Ellis Park Turf Stakes at that Kentucky track. The Sharp Humor filly has but one win this year, that coming in the $50,000 Cincinnati Trophy over Polytrack at Turfway Park in January. Florent Geroux will ride the Ron Pellegrini-trained filly.
Two other stakes winners are part of the field – Vladamir Kasakov’s Santina Dond, who won the $65,000 Hatoof Stakes on the Arlington Million Day undercard; and Slapshot Racing’s Seans Silverdancer, heroine of the $100,000 Pat Whitworth Debutante last December at Hawthorne. Wade Rini has the mount aboard the Gennadi Dorchenko-trained Santina Dond while Tim Thornton is slated to ride Seans Silverdancer for trainer Lisa Merrit.
Also of note in the race is Ben Walden & Pat Madden’s Triune, who invades from New York where the daughter of E Dubai was competitive in overnight stakes competition. Seth Martinez rides for trainer Richard Budge.
Completing the field for Pucker Up (with jockeys listed) are: Green Lantern Stables’ Sea Level Drive (Corey Lanerie); Pete & Barb Horton’s Love Dare (Eusebio Razo Jr.); Philip Sims & Jerry Namy’s Don’t Tell Sophia (Leandro Goncalves); Flaxman Holdings’ Barbies M (Julio Felix); Pin Oak Stable’s Happy Choice (Jesus Castanon); Ken & Sarah Ramsey’s Artemus Kitten (Jozbin Santana); and Dreamfields Farm’s Maid of Heaven (E. T. Baird).