Ariege, a multiple graded stakes winner who has a victory over the Keeneland Polytrack earlier this season, leads a quality group of 3-year-old fillies that includes grade I winners Backseat Rhythm and Magical Fantasy in the $500,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes (gr. IT) Oct. 11 on the turf in Lexington.
This game has sprinters, routers, speed horses, and stalkers. We've seen those with blistering speed and others who have used their superior tracking abilities. There are those who come from off the pace to get up in the nick of time, and others who come from so far off the pace they usually leave us wondering how they made up so much ground. Then, there's Fred. OK, Tissington.
Valhol is being prepared for a start in the April 27 Texas Mile (gr. III) at Lone Star Park. Since finishing a disappointing eighth in the New Orleans Handicap (gr. II), the 6-year-old gelded son of Diazo has been sidelined with a foot ailment.
Two horses coming out of the Donn Handicap (gr. I) will go to post as the highweights in the $500,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II).
James Jackson's Valhol rallied from just off the pace then held Parade Leader safely at bat to win the $125,000 Whirlaway Handicap at the Fair Grounds. On a fast track, the 6-year-old gelded son of Diazo completed the 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.94.
James Jackson's Valhol put in a bullet work at Colonial Downs Tuesday morning in preparation for Saturday night's $400,000 Meadowlands Cup (gr. II). The 4-year-old gelded son of Diazo will be making his second start since bone chip surgery following his third-place finish in the 1999 Ohio Derby (gr. II).