Sam-Son Farm homebred Strike Softly, a three-time stakes winner in Canada in 2006, will make her 4-year-old debut in Sunday's $150,000 Hendrie Stakes (Can-III) at Woodbine.
If the daughter of Smart Strike picks up where she left off last year, she should make an impact in the 6 1/2-furlong dash on the all-weather track, which has attracted seven other entrants, including Keeneland's Madison Stakes (gr. II) winner Mary Delaney, the 9-5 morning line choice.
Strike Softly, who will be ridden by Todd Kabel, closed out her sophomore campaign with an authoritative 3 1/2-length tally in the Jammed Lovely Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Woodbine on Nov. 12.
"She ran a great race at the end of last year," said trainer Mark Frostad.
Strike Softly also won on the E.P. Taylor Turf Course with scores in the Ontario Damsel and the Carotene.
Frostad believes the four-time winner of $425,900 displays her talent no matter what surface she is on.
"She's a very versatile filly," he said. "We'll see how she runs on Sunday. We'll see where we go with her this year."
Frostad said Strike Softly, who drew post one, enters on the strength of several five and six-furlong workouts over the past month. The filly trained at Keeneland for most of April, but didn't make it to the races.
"She wasn't as far along as I would have liked," explained Frostad. "So, I just waited."
A Strike Softly victory would give Sam-Son Farm and trainer Mark Frostad back-to-back wins in the Hendrie. Last year, High Button Shoes, who was also piloted by Kabel, captured the event.
$150,000 Hendrie Stakes (gr. III, Race 6, 3:30 p.m.), Fillies & Mares 4 & Up, 6 1/2 Furlongs (All-Weather)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Strike Softly (ON), Todd Kabel, 117, 6/1
2. The Niagara Queen (ON), Emma-Jayne Wilson, 113, 15/1
3. Seductively (ON), Gerry Olguin, 119, 3/1
4. Bosskiri (ON), Jono C. Jones, 117, 12/1
5. Fiery Dancer (KY), Corey Fraser, 113, 10/1
6. Hide and Chic (KY), David Clark, 119, 4/1
7. Summer Girlfriend (KY), Constant Montpellier, 117, 12/1
8. Mary Delaney (KY), Patrick Husbands, 121, 9/5