Hennie's Song Tests 'Humor in Delaware Oaks
Updated: Saturday, July 19, 2003 3:50 PM
(from track report)
Posted: Thursday, July 17, 2003 8:33 PM
Phillip and Marcia Cohen and Steve Klesaris' undefeated Hennie's Song has passed each of her five tests in impressive fashion, but Saturday's $500,000 Delaware Oaks (gr. III) at Delaware Park will be her most difficult yet.
The Kentucky-bred daughter of Unbridled's Song, facing graded stakes competition for the first time, will face nine rivals in the 1 1/16-mile event.
Hennie's Song, trained locally by Klesaris, has won her five career starts by a total of 17 lengths. Her last four scores have come at Delaware Park. In her last, she notched a 2 1/4-length gate-to-wire score in the 1 1/16-mile Susan's Girl Breeders' Cup on June 28. Previously, she won Go for Wand Stakes over the same distance by a half length on May 31. Her career earnings are $226,800, which she could more than double in the Delaware Oaks.
Klesaris likes the fact that Hennie's Song will be on her home track.
"She is coming into the race real good," Klesaris said. "She is familiar with the course and the stable area, whereas some of the others are not. The shippers will have to deal with a new track and environment. She is in her own house on her own track, and in her own paddock. I always think that is an advantage."
The biggest challenge will likely come from WinStar Farm's Awesome Humor.
Awesome Humor has posted five victories from six career starts. Last year, the daughter of Distorted Humor was unbeaten in four outings. She posted victories in the 5 1/2-furlong Debutante Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs on July 6, 2002 and the Adirondack Stakes (gr. II) and the Spinaway Stakes (gr. I) later at Saratoga. In her 3-year-old debut she tasted defeat for the first time when she ran fourth in an allowance at Churchill Downs on May 14.
However, the Kentucky-bred trained by Elliot Walden bounced right back by posting a 1 1/4-length score against older horses in a 1 1/8-mile allowance at Arlington Park on June 6.
Her trainer Elliot Walden was not discouraged by her lone defeat.
"Things really did not go well for her in that race," said Walden. "She got some dirt in her face and she got into a couple of things that she really was not used too. Those things through her off her game a little bit and she lost her focus. It ended up that she just kind of ran around there."
Walden was encouraged with her bouncing back and notching a victory against older horses going long.
"I was very pleased with that race," said Walden. "She beat a nice mare in Lakenheath, who is a very good older mare, and she drew away. She has been training great since. She worked :59 2/5 on Saturday and she will ship to Delaware on Wednesday." $500,000 Delaware Oaks, 3-year-old fillies, 1 1/16 mile
PP. HORSE, JOCKEY, WT., ML ODDS
1. Awesome Humor, Robbie Albarado, 115, 7/2
2. Island Fashion, Ignacio Puglisi, 122, 8-1
3. Sues Good News, Tim Doocy, 117, 5-1
4. Meet Me at Midnite, Mark Guidry, 115, 8-1
5. Hennie's Song, Anthony Black, 119, 4-1
6. Wildwood Royal, Danush Sukie, 117, 8-1
7. Ladyecho, Oliver Castillo, 115, 12-1
8. Cherokee Lite, Javier Castellano, 115, 8-1
9. Virgin Voyage, Jorge Chavez, 115, 10/2
10. Mt. Kobla, TBA, 115, 12-1
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