Bending Springs, fourth in last year's Juddmonte Spinster Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland, returns to the Lexington oval for Wednesday's Vinery Madison Stakes (gr. II) for distaffers aged four and up. The 5-year-old daughter of American Chance trained by Wally Dollase was assigned top weight of 123 pounds, four pounds more than Flying Glitter, and six pounds more than the remaining nine entries for the seven-furlong test worth $200,000.
Bending Strings is seeking her first win since the mile Chilukki Stakes (gr. II) at Churchill Downs in November three races ago. She is coming into the Vinery Madison after being badly beaten in the 1 1/8- mile Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap (gr. I) in her 2006 debut and a return to sprinting might help. Rafael Bejarano will be riding her for the first time.
Flying Glitter, a two-time graded winner last year, figures to be vying for the early lead with Dubai Escapade, the 7-2 favorite. A confirmed front runner, Flying Glitter finished second in an optional claiming race at six furlongs March 17 at Oaklawn Park as the 4-5 favorite. A daughter of Glitterman
trained by Ronny Werner, Flying Glitter will once again be ridden by Robby Albarado.
Dubai Escapade, who raced last year in Dubai, sports a two-for-two record this year. Both wins came in front-running efforts at Gulfstream at 6 1/2 furlongs and at a mile for trainer Eoin Harty. Edgar Prado rides the daughter of Awesome Again
for the first time.
Vinery Madison Stakes (gr. II) 8th Race EPT 4:45
Horse Jockey Weight Odds
1 Givememore Scott Spieth 117 30/1
2 Island Escape Jesus Castanon 117 12/1
3 Silver Crown James Graham 117 12/1
4 Josh's Madelyn Terry Thompson 117 6/1
5 Bending Strings Rafael Bejarano 123 5/1
6 Beautiful Bets Mark Guidry 117 8/1
7 Atlas Valley Rene Douglas 117 9/2
8 Ever Elusive John Velazquez 117 6/1
9 Flying Glitter Robby Albarado 119 8/1
10 Dubai Escapade Edgar S. Prado 117 7/2
11 Malibu Mint Kristi Chapman 117 20/1