A winner of three straight stakes and four straight races overall, Celestine will try to land her first graded stakes victory in the $200,000 Lake George Stakes (gr. IIT) July 24, opening day at Saratoga Race Course.
James Bryan Jr.'s Celestine enters Friday's 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-old fillies off a pair of stakes victories on the Belmont Park turf: the May 16 Wait a While and most recently the June 14 Wild Applause. She was saddled to victory in those two wins by trainer Bill Mott after previously being trained by Bill Kaplan.
For Kaplan, Celestine won a maiden race March 29 sprinting on the Gulfstream Park turf before stretching out to one mile to win the Sanibel Island Stakes on the Gulfstream grass. In five career turf starts, the daughter of Scat Daddy boasts four wins and a second and $198,035 in earnings.
Awaiting Celestine will be Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners' Feathered, who has found a home racing on the turf. The daughter of Indian Charlie earned a grade I-placing on dirt but managed just one maiden win in seven starts on dirt. In her first turf try, Feathered won the Edgewood Stakes (gr. IIIT) May 1 on the Churchill Downs turf.
Feathered, who enters the Lake George off a runner-up finish in the American Oaks (gr. I) May 30 at Santa Anita Park, is the lone graded stakes winner in the expected field of 12.
"In her first couple of starts this year she didn't seem to have regained her 2-year-old form," said Feathered's trainer, Todd Pletcher. "So we turned to the grass and that seemed to take care of it. We're not surprised with her pedigree that she likes it, but she's a good, versatile filly that handles multiple surfaces and distances."
On paper the field appears to have an abundance of early speed as Feathered, who went gate-to-wire in the Edgewood and attempted the same in the American Oaks before finishing second to Spanish Queen, will be joined by Cara Marie, who enters off a front-running victory in a turf stakes at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino; grade III-placed Lady Zuzu; Mrs McDougal, who pressed Feathered in the American Oaks before finishing fourth; and Robillard, who enters off a front-running score in an allowance race on the inner turf at Belmont.
Some of the fillies who could take advantage of a hot pace would be Partisan Politics, who finished second by a nose to Celestine in the Wild Applause; Mississippi Delta, who rallied from 10th to win a stakes on the Woodbine turf; and All in Fun, who has scored on the front end but most recently rallied from seven lengths back to finish second to Miss Temple City in the Hilltop Stakes May 15 at Pimlico Race Course.
Saratoga Race Course, Friday, July 24, 2015, Race 9
- 1 1/16m
- 3 yo Fillies
- 5:29 PM (local)
|1||1Celestine (KY)||Junior Alvarado||121||William I. Mott||-|
|2||2My Year Is a Day (FR)||Jose Lezcano||121||H. Graham Motion||-|
|3||3Jellicle Ball (IRE)||John R. Velazquez||115||H. Graham Motion||-|
|4||4Cara Marie (KY)||Paco Lopez||115||Kellyn Gorder||-|
|5||5All in Fun (KY)||Joel Rosario||117||Claude R. McGaughey III||-|
|6||6Sivoliere (IRE)||Jose L. Ortiz||115||Chad C. Brown||-|
|7||7Mississippi Delta (KY)||Julien R. Leparoux||115||Mark E. Casse||-|
|8||8Lady Zuzu (KY)||Corey J. Lanerie||115||D. Wayne Lukas||-|
|9||9Mrs McDougal (KY)||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||117||Chad C. Brown||-|
|10||10Feathered (KY)||Luis Saez||123||Todd A. Pletcher||-|
|11||11Robillard (KY)||Cornelio H. Velasquez||117||Kiaran P. McLaughlin||-|
|12||12Partisan Politics (KY)||Javier Castellano||121||Chad C. Brown||-|