Fox Hill Farms’ Rick Porter, owner of Havre de Grace, made his intentions quite clear when he stated July 19, “If they (the New York Racing Association) double the pot for the Personal Ensign, the match is on.”
Doubling the pot for the Aug. 28 Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I), a 1 1/4-mile event at Saratoga the day after the Travers (gr. I), would mean increasing the purse from $300,000 to $600,000. And the match Porter was referring to would be a seventh showdown between Havre de Grace and her arch rival Blind Luck, who at this point is considered a probable starter.
"Larry (Jones) and I talked this morning and there are rumors that (NYRA) might double the purse for the Personal Ensign if we both run," Porter said. "That would be good for us and good for racing."
Porter said the alternative for Havre de Grace, who was defeated a nose by Blind Luck in the July 16
Jerry Hollendorfer, trainer and part-owner of Blind Luck, has not committed his filly to the Personal Ensign, but indicated that is the race they are leaning heavily towards.
Of their six meetings, in which Blind Luck holds a 4-2 advantage, four of them have been decided by a nose, a nose, a neck, and a neck. Blind Luck finished one length ahead of Havre de Grace when they finished second and third in the Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic (gr. I).