Irving's Baby will attempt to become broodmare Irving's Girl's second offspring in six days to win a graded stakes race when the 5-year-old mare by Quiet American faces six rivals in Friday's $100,000 Next Move Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct. Last Saturday, Anstu Stable's Deeliteful Irving, a son of Irving's Baby, won the Pan American Handicap (gr. IIT) at Gulfstream Park.
Todd Pletcher trains both Deeliteful Irving and Irving's Baby for owner-breeder Anstu Stable. Irving's Baby two biggest wins came last summer in races contested at 1 1/4 miles, the Delaware (gr. III) and Glens Falls Handicaps, and is coming off a minor stakes triumph. Queens Carousel, a 3-year-old full sister to Deeliteful Irving, finished third in her career debut at Aqueduct last Saturday.
Delaware Oaks and Affectionately Handicap (gr. III) winner Zonk is the 5-2 morning-line favorite and 118-pound highweight. The 4-year-old daughter of Farma Way has won two of three races this year, including a one-length win over Next Move entrant With Ability in her most recent start.
"She's such an honest filly," trainer John Servis said. "I was going to give her more time after (a fourth-place finish) in the Rare Treat, but she was doing so well we shipped her up for the allowance race. She showed a lot of heart getting by With Ability."
Though Transcendental has yet to win a stakes race, she is the 5-2 second choice on the morning line. The James Bond-trained daughter of Mt. Livermore enters the Next Move off a 5 ½-length romp in a Gulfstream Park optional claiming/allowance race last month.
"It was important getting a race into her," said Bond. "She got a lot out of it mentally. I was looking for another spot to run her in between races, but there wasn't much out there. It's tough finding races for good horses."
1--(E)With Ability, Javier Castellano, 113, 5-1
2--Diversa, Shaun Bridgmohan, 113, 8-1
3--Irving's Baby, Ramon Dominguez, 117, 3-1
4--Pocus Hocus, Mike Luzzi, 111, 8-1
5--Transcendental, Jorge Chavez, 113, 5-2
6--Zonk, Richard Migliore, 118, 2-1
7--(E)Unrestrained, John Velazquez, 112, 5-1(E)--Denotes Edward Evans entry.