A field of five will take the gate in the $75,000 Pan Zareta Handicap Saturday at Fair Grounds, including the darling of Louisiana, Hallowed Dreams.
Hallowed Dreams, who will be defending her Pan Zareta title, makes her first start since turning in the worst race of her career, a ninth-place finish Dec. 8 in the Louisiana Champions Day Sprint. Since that defeat, trainer Lloyd Romero has given her three works at his Evangeline Downs base. In her last work, Feb. 2, Hallowed Dreams went four furlongs in :46.
The Pan Zareta will also mark the first start for Hallowed Dreams under jockey Marlon St. Julien. Regular rider Sylvester Carmouche was taken off following Champions Day.
Hallowed Dreams is one of five finalists for the Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association's Accredited Louisiana Bred Horses of the Year awards in the 4-year-old and up filly and mare category. Winners will be announced next week.
The short field does not guarantee an easy win for Hallowed Dreams. Challenging her will be Serena's Tune, who will be retired for breeding this spring. Serena's Tune won a Dec. 20 allowance race, covering six furlongs in 1:09.55, one of the fastest times of the meet.
Completing the Pan Zareta field: My Brent's Diamond (Frank Lovato, Jr, 117); Dominica (Willie Martinez, 112); Serena's Tune (Robby Albarado, 116); Hallowed Dreams (St. Julien, 122); and Hattiesburg (Eddie M. Martin, Jr., 117).
The nominees for Louisiana-bred year-end honors are:
2-Year-Old Filly: C J's Star, Kwik Kash, Sunny Scarlett, Taylor's Queen
2-Year-Old Colt/Gelding: Hail to Bag, Rapide, Walk in the Snow, Zuppy
3-Year-Old Filly: Lettuce Loose, Rail to Seattle, Wild Squaw
3-Year-Old Colt/Gelding: L'Homme, Mr. Sulu, Prince Slew, Sky Mart, Tyler's Priority, War Threat
4-Year-Old and Up Filly/Mare: Hallowed Dreams, Midge Too, Mrs. Mac, My Brent's Diamond, Sparkles of Luck
4-Year-Old and Up Male: Doctor Mike, Kettle Man, Oak Hall, Sunup Sundown, Vilaxy, White Star
Broodmare of the Year: Nalees Squaw, Pacific's Dream, Roaring Fireplace, Run Prissy Run, Shimbar.