Virginia Kraft Payson’s Rutherienne will top a quality field of turf distaffers including Valbenny, Lady Digby,and J’ray, in the $200,000 All Along Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Colonial Downs June 21.
Coming off a third-place finish behind Precious Kitten and Diamond Diva in Hollywood Park’s May 26 Gamely Stakes (gr. IT), the Christophe Clement trainee seeks a return to the winning form that brought victories in Keeneland’s Jenny Wiley Stakes (gr. IIT) this April and in the Frances A. Genter Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Calder last December. With a victory in the All Along, the 4-year-old daughter of Pulpitwould add a seventh graded stakes score to her resume, which includes nine wins from 12 starts thus far. The All Along is her third start of the season.
Trainer H. Graham Motion sends out a strong pair of 4-year-old fillies in the All Along – Earle Mack’s homebred Lady Digby and Courtlandt Farms’ homebred Indescribable. The latter, a daughter of Pleasant Tap, won the May 26 Arlington Matron Handicap (gr. IIIT) in her most recent start after finishing third in Keeneland’s April 18 Doubledogdare Stakes (gr. IIIT). The former, by Grand Slam, ran second to Roshani in the May 17 Gallorette Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Pimlico.
Third in the Gallorette was LGL Racing’s Valbenny, a 4-year-old daughter of Val Royal. The Michael Matz-trained runner was five lengths back from the first two in that race, but wound up in the position through no fault of her own after being jostled and checked at the seven-eighths pole. It was her first start back off a layup following a sixth-place effort in Belmont’s Garden City Stakes (gr. IT), a surprisingly dismal finish considering her duo of graded wins in Hollywood’s Senorita Stakes (gr. IIIT) and Honeymoon Breeders’ Cup Handicap (gr. IIT) followed by runner-up efforts in the American Oaks Invitational (gr. IT) and Del Mar Oaks (gr. IT) – the last of which was won by Rutherienne.
Lawrence Goichman’s J’ray has yet to score a win this season. Her last finish for trainer Todd Pletcher was a weak sixth in the May 24 Sheepshead Bay Handicap (gr. IIT) at Belmont. But the 5-year-old daughter of Distant View has considerable talent, with scores in the 2007 editions of the 9-furlong Bayou Breeders’ Cup handicap (gr. IIIT) and 1 1/8-mile My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT) to her credit.
$200,000 All Along Stakes (gr. IIIT, Race 8, approximate post 4:55 p.m.), 1 1/8 miles, older fillies and mares, outer turf
PP, Horse, Weight, Jockey, Morning Line Odds
1. Palmilla, 120, Rosemary B. Homeister, Jr., 10/1
2. Lady Digby, 120, Jeremy Rose, 6/1
3. Indescribable, 122, rider TBA, 5/1
4. Eclisse, 120, Elvis Trujillo, 20/1
5. Dancing Band, 120, Jermaine Bridgmohan, 20/1
6. J'ray, 120, Eibar Coa, 4/1
7. Royal Pleasure, 120, Rosemary B. Homeister, Jr., 10/1
8. High Moment, 120, Julian Pimentel, 15/1
9. Valbenny, 120, Edgar Prado, 7/2
10. Rutherienne, 122, Garrett Gomez, 5/2