Juddmonte Farms' Emollient, 2-for-2 at Keeneland after notching double grade I wins at the Lexington oval, finds a softer spot in the $100,000 Hilliard Lyons Doubledogdare Stakes (gr. III) Friday, April 18.
The 4-year-old Empire Maker filly earned her two grade I victories at Keeneland in the Central Bank Ashland (gr. I) last spring and the Juddmonte Spinster (gr. I) in the fall, taking the American Oaks (gr. I) at Hollywood Park in between. Only three fillies—Take Charge Lady (2002), Optimistic Gal (1976), and Doubledogdare herself (1956) had accomplished that double.
After her Juddmonte Spinster victory for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott, Emollient left Keeneland to run a good fourth in the Nov. 2 Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT). She made her season debut March 16 in the Santa Ana Stakes (gr. IIT) going 1 1/8 miles on the Santa Anita Park lawn, finishing fourth after pressing the pace.
Cutting back to 1 1/16 miles and returning to the Polytrack, Emollient carries top weight of 123 pounds against 10 other older fillies and mares in the Doubledogdare, which goes as the ninth on Friday's 10-race program with a post time of 5:13 p.m. EDT. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith has the return call from post 10. All others carry 118 pounds.
Trained by Mark Casse, Sisterly Love was named Canada's champion older female in 2013. Stewart Elliott, who rode the 6-year-old daughter of Bellamy Road to a wire-to-wire victory in an allowance going the Doubledogdare distance April 4, has the mount. Sisterly Love, winner of the 2013 Ontario Matron Stakes (Can-III) and fourth in the Spinster last year, will break from post position seven as a supplemental entry.
Casse also has John Oxley's 2012 Prince of Wales Stakes winner Dixie Strike, who ran fifth in the season's Ashland and then won the Selene Stakes (Can-III). The 5-year-old Dixie Union mare comes off a fifth in the March 15 Azeri Stakes (gr. II) on the dirt at Oaklawn Park, where she ran second in the Bayakoa Stakes a month earlier.
$100,000 Hilliard Lyons Doubledogdare Stakes (gr. III, race 9, approximate post time 5:13 p.m. EDT), 1 1/16 miles (all weather track)
PP, Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Ire (KY), J.R. Leparoux, 118, A M Stall, Jr.
2. Moment in Dixie (KY), J. Lezcano, 118, J J Toner
3. Pearl Turn (KY), R. Napravnik, 118, W Van Meter
4. Gold Medal Dancer (KY), L.S. Quinonez, 118, D K Von Hemel
5. Noble Charlotte (KY), M.G. Pino, 118, J Cheeks
6. Dixie Strike (ON), A. Garcia, 118, M E Casse
7. Sisterly Love (KY), S. Elliott, 118, M E Casse
8. Sisterhood (KY), J.R. Velazquez, 118, W A Ward
9. Solid Appeal (KY), R. Albarado, 118, R Baker
10. Emollient (KY), M.E. Smith, 123, W I Mott
11. Strathnaver (GB), J. Rosario, 118, H G Motion