Champion female sprinter Informed Decision will try to bounce back from an uncharacteristically subpar effort when she faces a full field in the $400,000 Presque Isle Downs Masters (gr. I), a race she dominated a year ago.
The 5-year-old Monarchos mare won the 6 1/2-furlong Masters by 2 1/2 lengths as the odds-on favorite in 2009. She will take on 11 rivals in this edition of the Sept. 11 race, which will be on the synthetic Tapeta surface. Post time is slated for 8 p.m. EDT.
Augustin Stable’s Informed Decision won the July 4 Chicago Handicap (gr. III) at Arlington Park and July 27 Windward Stakes at Presque Isle before finishing sixth as the favorite in the Aug. 28 Ballerina Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga. It was only the second time in 19 career starts that she failed to hit the board.
“They had sealed the track at Saratoga and then opened it up with harrows,” assistant trainer Barry Wiseman said. “When watching the (Ballerina), you could see that Informed Decision didn’t like the footing.”
A winner of 13 races with earnings of $1,954,426, Informed Decision is an eight-time graded stakes winner, including three grade I scores. She capped off her sensational 2009 season with a victory in the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (gr. I) at Santa Anita, which locked up the female sprint championship for her.
Julien Leparoux will fly in to ride Informed Decision, who enters off only two weeks rest and is one of three starters assigned 123 pounds. They will break from post 5. The gray/roan mare is out of the His Majesty mare Palangana and was bred in Kentucky by C. Kidder and N. Cole.
Derby Lane Farm and partners’ Dr. Zic pulled a 15-1 upset in the Vinery Madison (gr. I) April 8 at Keeneland, going wire-to-wire for her first graded win. Since then, the 4-year-old Milwaukee Brew filly placed runner-up in the Hendrie Stakes (Can-III) at Woodbine and finished ninth in the July 10 Princess Rooney Handicap (gr. I) at Calder after setting the early pace and tiring badly.
Javier Castellano will ride for trainer Joan Scott. They will break from post 9.
Martin Racing Stable and Dan Morgan’s Dubai Majesty will be making her eighth start of the season. The 5-year-old Essence of Dubai mare has hit the board in all but one her starts in 2010, including wins in the Winning Colors (gr. III) May 31 at Churchill Downs—a race she won for the second consecutive year—and the Incredible Revenge Stakes last out on the Monmouth Park turf course Aug. 15.
Dubai Majesty was also runner-up to Dr. Zic in the Madison. The Bret Calhoun trainee has posted a 10-6-6 record from 31 starts overall. She will be ridden by Miguel Mena for the fourth straight time.
Other contenders in the race include Red Hot Buddha, winner of the Inaugural Stakes at Presque Isle in May, and Peristaltica, a group I winner in Argentina making her North American debut.
$400,000 Presque Isle Downs Masters (gr. III, Race 7, 8 p.m.), Fillies & Mares 3 & Up, 6 1/2 Furlongs (Tapeta) PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Rollicking Affair (VA), H Vega, 112, C Progno
2. Dubai Majesty (FL), M Mena, 123, W B Calhoun
3. Peristaltica (ARG), D Cohen, 112, S bin Suroor
4. Indian Ink (OH), No rider, 112, M L Rone
5. Informed Decision (KY), J R Leparoux, 123, J E Sheppard
6. Waccamaw (KY), J L Castanon, 115, R M Gorham
7. Old Time Religion (KY), C Montalvo, 112, G S Wismer
8. Mother Russia (NY), M J Luzzi, 112, L Rice
9. Dr. Zic (KY), J Castellano, 123, J Scott
10. Red Hot Buddha (KY), S Spieth, 119, T M Amoss
11. Sweet Lorena (NY), D Centeno, 112, M S Ferraro
12. Don'ttalktome (KY), D Centeno, 112, C J Stewart
13. Blackwell (KY), P Morales, 110, T E Hamm
14. Denali Glitter (KY), M G Pino, 112, T E Martin