Owner/trainer Wesley Ward’s Judy the Beauty, a seven-time winner who never has finished worse than third in 15 starts, eyes consecutive grade I victories in the $300,000 Humana Distaff Stakes at Churchill Downs May 3.
In her last start April 12 on Polytrack at Keeneland, Judy the Beauty scored an impressive off-the-pace victory in the grade I Madison Stakes at seven furlongs, the distance of the Humana Distaff. In November 2013 the 5-year-old mare fell a half-length shy of defeating Groupie Doll in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park.
Groupie Doll went on to capture her second Eclipse Award as champion female sprinter and has since been retired.
Judy the Beauty, by Ghostzapper out of the Holy Bull mare Holy Blitz, was bred in Ontario by Adena Springs. She had four second-place finishes in grade I stakes before her victory in the Madison, in which she earned a 108 Equibase Speed Figure.
Judy the Beauty is the 123-pound highweight in the Humana Distaff. Listed at 3-1 on the morning line, she will break from post 3.
Karl Watson, Mike Pegram, and Paul Weitman’s Midnight Lucky is well-spotted from the outside post 8, but she hasn’t raced in more than 11 months, when she won the one-turn-mile Acorn Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park. That followed a fifth-place finish in the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
Midnight Lucky, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly by Midnight Lute out of the Citidancer mare Citiview, was bred by Kidder and Griggs. Bob Baffert trains and Rosie Napravnik is named to ride Midnight Lucky, who is the 5-2 morning line choice.
The Humana Distaff has a definite West Coast flavor, with Jerry Hollendorfer entering Scherzinger and John Sadler represented by Iotapa. Both are pegged at 7-2 on the early line.
Scherzinger was last seen winning the seven-furlong Santa Monica (gr. II) Jan. 25, her stakes debut. Iotapa ran second in the Santa Monica but came back to take the Santa Maria Stakes (gr. II) and finish second in the Santa Margarita Stakes (gr. II) in her most recent start March 15.
$300,000 Humana Distaff Stakes (gr. I, Race 7, approximate post 2:08 p.m. EDT), F&M 4YOs and up, 7 Furlongs (dirt)
PP., Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, ML Odds
1. Street Girl (KY), J R Leparoux, 118, E Kenneally, 20/1
2. Heart Stealer (KY), J Rosario, 120, M D Wolfson, 5/1
3. Judy the Beauty (ON), J R Velazquez, 123, W A Ward, 3/1
4. Saturday Nthe Park (KY) R Albarado 118 T Q McCauley 20/1
5. Scherzinger (KY), M E Smith, 120, J Hollendorfer, 7/2
6. Iotapa (KY), V Espinoza, 120, J W Sadler, 7/2
7. Speedinthruthecity (KY), R Santana Jr., 120, S M Asmussen, 15/1
8. Midnight Lucky (KY), R Napravnik, 118, B Baffert, 5/2