Tracy Farmer’s La Gran Bailadora, fifth in last year’s Hilliard Lyons Doubledogdare Stakes (gr. III) after a slow start, will give it another try April 20 in the 1 1/16-mile stakes for fillies and mares at Keeneland.
A field of eight was drawn for the Doubledogdare, which will be run on Polytrack at the Lexington racetrack. Post time for the Friday feature is 5:13 p.m. EDT.
La Gran Bailadora, trained by Mike Maker, is a multiple stakes winner on Polytrack at Turfway Park but hasn’t won in four starts at Keeneland. She does have a second and a third, however, and enters the Doubledogdare off a steady series of works over the past two months.
Corey Lanerie, who rode La Gran Bailadora to victory last September in the 1 1/16-mile Kentucky Cup Distaff (gr. II) at Turfway, has the call again. La Gran Bailadora and the seven other females will carry 118 pounds in the stakes.
La Gran Bailadora, a 5-year-old homebred mare by Afleet Alex , drew the rail, but that shouldn’t impact her chances because she usually likes to save ground early toward the back of the pack before launching her rally.
Favoritism could go to Fox Hill Farms Joyful Victory, who most recently finished third in the Azeri Stakes (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park as the second choice March 17. The Larry Jones trainee was the favorite in last year’s Kentucky Oaks (gr. I), in which she finished fourth.
The Ontario-bred 4-year-old Tapit filly drew post 8 and attracted Robby Albarado, who has ridden her in her last four starts.
Five D Thoroughbreds and Wind River Stables’ Kathmanblu, a 4-year-old Bluegrass Cat filly trained by Ken McPeek, returns to the races after a six-month break. Kathmanblu finished a closing third in the grade I Ashland Stakes on the Keeneland Polytrack in 2011 and seeks to regain the form that had her one of the choices in last year’s Kentucky Oaks.
Julien Leparoux, who rode Kathmanblu to three consecutive stakes wins in 2010-11, will ride from post 2.
$100,000 Doubledogdare Stakes (gr. III, Race 9, 5:13 p.m. EDT), F&M, 4YO and Up, 1 1/16 Miles (Polytrack)
PP., Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. La Gran Bailadora (KY) C J Lanerie 118 M J Maker
2. Kathmanblu (KY) J R Leparoux 118 K G McPeek
3. Lunar Mist (VA) R B Homeister Jr. 118 E R Reed
4. Principal Role (KY) E S Prado 118 W I Mott
5. Pachattack (KY) R Maragh 118 H G Motion
6. My Pal Chrisy (FL) L Panici 118 P Lutchman
7. Sea Level Drive (KY) J Graham 118 G R Arnold II
8. Joyful Victory (ON) R Albarado 118 J L Jones