Maddalena heads an evenly matched field of seven entered for Laurel Park's $150,000 Safely Kept Breeders' Cup (gr. III) for 3-year-old fillies on Sunday.
In a race that includes four other stakes winners, Maddalena was made the 3-2 morning line favorite.
Maddalena has made nine starts, seven of which came against stakes company. She's won the Old Hat (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park and the Legal Light at Delaware and ran second in the Prioress (gr. I) at Belmont and the Victory Ride at Saratoga. Todd Pletcher trains the daughter of Good and Tough
. Mike Luzzi will ride.
Early speed is abundant – Trickle of Gold, Lady Dynasty and Slew Motion all have led at the first call in many of their starts.
Trickle of Gold (9-5) is riding a three-race streak versus allowance foes. She has the riding services of Jeremy Rose for trainer Michael Gorham.
"She had some 2-year-old problems that kept her from performing her best," Gorham said. "She was a very nervous juvenile. On three occasions, she got loose during the post parade. We turned her out, and she settled down nicely. She always showed talent, but her inexperience was keeping her from reaching peak potential. We gave her some time and let her progress through her allowance conditions so she could be seasoned with a few races under her belt before trying a stakes."
Slew Motion (6-1) has been battling New York-breds. She placed in the Union Avenue Stakes at Saratoga last out.
Laurel Park's only representative in the race is Partners Due (8-1), a Michael Trombetta-trained filly by Partner's Hero
. She won both the Meadow Star Stakes at Belmont Park and the Woolums Memorial at Colonial Downs this summer. Horacio Karamanos takes the reins. His last ride aboard this filly came in the 2004 Maryland Million Lassie, when she finished second.
Ebony Star (8-1) is a winner of four of eight starts. She won her last two including a restricted stakes at Delaware Park. William Otero retains the mount for trainer John Zimmerman.
Starleena (12-1) was a winner at Mountaineer Park last time out for trainer Bernie Flint. Stewart Elliott will ride.
Lady Dynasty (15-1) placed in her past two tries against stakes rivals at Monmouth Park. Her regular rider, Chuck Lopez, has the mount.$150,000 Safely Kept Breeders' Cup (gr. III), 3-year-old fillies, 6 furlongs
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight
1. Starleena (MD), Stewart Elliott, 116
2. Trickle of Gold (KY), Jeremy Rose, 116
3. Maddalena (MD), Michael Luzzi, 120
4. Lady Dynasty (KY), Charles Lopez, 116
5. Slew Motion (NY), no rider, 116
6. Partners Due (VA), Horacio Karamanos, 116
7. Ebony Star (MD), William Otero, 116