Speedway Stable's Hard Not to Like will attempt to become the second repeat winner of the $300,000 Jenny Wiley (gr. IT) April 11, when she takes on seven rivals in the 1 1/16-mile grass test at Keeneland.
The Jenny Wiley will go as the ninth race on Saturday's 11-race program with an approximate post time of 4:46 p.m. ET.
Only 2004-2005 victress Intercontinental has repeated in the Jenny Wiley, which was first run in 1989.
Now trained by Christophe Clement, Hard Not to Like rallied from off the pace to win last year's renewal by half length. That was her final race of 2014 and the first grade I victory of her career. She began 2015 by being disqualified from winning the Lambholm South Endeavor (gr. IIIT) at Tampa Bay Downs Jan. 31 for coming out sharply in deep stretch and has not run since then.
Irad Ortiz Jr. will ride the 6-year-old daughter of Hard Spun from post 5.
Top challengers to Hard Not to Like figure to come from a trio of hopefuls with experience over the course.
W.S. Farish and Steve Mooney's Ball Dancing and G. Watts Humphrey Jr. and St. George Farm Racing's Personal Diary finished second and third, respectively, in last fall's Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (gr. IT) Presented by Lane's End.
Trained by Chad Brown, Ball Dancing was second to stablemate Stephanie's Kitten in her 2015 debut in the Hillsborough (gr. IIIT) at Tampa Bay March 7 and will make her second start of the season in the Jenny Wiley. Javier Castellano has the mount from post 4 on the 4-year-old Exchange Rate filly, a grade II winner who seeks her first grade I victory here.
Personal Diary, winner of the Del Mar Oaks (gr. IT) last summer, is trained by Vicki Oliver. The 4-year-old daughter of City Zip will be making her 2015 debut from the rail under Joe Bravo, having last run fourth in the Nov. 15 Mrs. Revere Stakes (gr. IIT) at Churchill Downs.
Also returning to Keeneland is Juddmonte Farms' Filimbi, the 120-pound highweight who drew post 3 under Joel Rosario (all other starters carry 118 pounds).
Trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, who owns four victories in the Jenny Wiley, Filimbi finished third in the First Lady (gr. IT) at Keeneland last fall and closed 2014 with a victory in the Goldikova (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita Park. The 5-year-old Mizzen Mast mare was fifth when making her 2015 debut in the Hillsborough.
Also entered are Calumet Farm's multiple grade III winner Starstruck, Ken and Sarah Ramsey's grade II winner Emotional Kitten, Lothenbach Stables' multiple stakes winner Eden Prairie, and allowance winner Samiam.
Keeneland, Saturday, April 11, 2015, Race 9
- 1 1/16m
- 4 yo's & up Fillies and Mares
- 4:46 PM (local)
|1||1Personal Diary (KY)||Joe Bravo||118||Victoria H. Oliver||-|
|2||2Starstruck (IRE)||Jose Lezcano||118||Jose Fernandez||-|
|3||3Filimbi (KY)||Joel Rosario||120||William I. Mott||-|
|4||4Ball Dancing (KY)||Javier Castellano||118||Chad C. Brown||-|
|5||5Hard Not to Like (ON)||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||118||Christophe Clement||-|
|6||6Samiam (KY)||Kerwin D. Clark||118||William B. Van Meter||-|
|7||7Emotional Kitten (PA)||Julien R. Leparoux||118||Wesley A. Ward||-|
|8||8Eden Prairie (KY)||Florent Geroux||118||Neil L. Pessin||-|