Centring, grade I-placed in three New York events this season for trainer Tom Albertrani, looks to break through with a class drop in the $200,000 Turnback the Alarm Handicap (gr. IIIT) Oct. 26 at Belmont Park.
Darley Stable's 5-year-old daughter of A. P. Indy is winless in six starts in 2013 but has banked nearly $200,000 thanks largely to third-place finishes in the Ogden Phipps and Personal Ensign handicaps and most recently, the Beldame Invitational Stakes (all gr. I) Sept. 28. She finished 8 3/4 lengths behind Princess of Sylmar in the Beldame after stumbling at the break, and will cut back slightly in distance this time from nine furlongs to 1 1/16 miles.
Centring is part of a field of eight older fillies and mares entered in the Turnback the Alarm, one of two grade III handicaps on Belmont's Saturday card along with the Bold Ruler. The Turnback the Alarm is race 9 with a 5:06 p.m. ET scheduled post.
Joel Rosario has the call on Centring, who breaks from post 6. Rosario was aboard the bay mare for her last victory, which came in a first-level allowance heat just over a year ago, a race that was taken off the turf and contested on a good main track. Overall, Centring has won two of 13 starts with seven placings and has earnings of $339,102.
Centring was assigned top weight of 117 pounds, but the spread is just three pounds over the remainder of the field.
Out of dual grade I winner Composure, Centring's connections are hoping to win a graded stakes with her before she is retired for broodmare duty.
"We're still hoping to get a stakes win under her," Albertrani said of the 2-1 morning line favorite. "Hopefully, this is a good opportunity to make her a stakes winner. This could be her last year in training.
"She's been racing with some of the top fillies this year," he said. "She has been managing to get a piece of the purse in these big races. Hopefully, this will be a bit of a class break her for her. We'll see how she competes here."
Another looking for a first win in 2013 is Sanford H. Robbins' Fantasy of Flight, making her first start for trainer Todd Pletcher. The 5-year-old Tiznow mare has been blanked in seven starts this season, but was second in five of them. The runner-up finishes include the Hurricane Bertie (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park in February as well as the Vangrancy and the Bed o' Roses (both gr. II) handicaps at Belmont this spring.
Fantasy of Flight pressed the pace in her most recent start, the seven-furlong Ballerina Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course Aug. 13, before weakening in the stretch to finish seventh. She wore blinkers in the Ballerina but will race without this time as she stretches out to her longest distance. John Velazquez takes the mount on the bay who breaks from the inside post.
Pletcher also entered James Riccio's Royal Lahaina, second to Summer Applause in the listed Lady Secret Stakes in her most recent try Aug. 25 at Monmouth Park. She, too, will be making her first appearance for a new trainer.
Lady Cohiba comes in off a front-running victory in the off-the-turf Glens Falls Stakes on a muddy Saratoga track Sept. 2. She is part of what should be a lively pace in the Turnback the Alarm. Live Oak Plantation's multiple stakes-winning 4-year-old Broken Vow filly is making just her third start of the year for trainer Christophe Clement. Junior Alvarado has the return ride.
Also victorious in her most recent start is Country Life Farm's Moon Philly, who scored a 5 1/2-length triumph over three opponents in the off-the-turf Justakiss overnight stakes at Delaware Park Oct. 7. Mike Trombetta trains the 4-year-old daughter of Malibu Moon , to be ridden by Cornelio Velasquez.
Street Secret, winner of Belmont's restricted Open Mind Stakes in June, looks to bounce back from an upset loss to Turnback the Alarm entrant Roman Invader when heavily favored in the Parlo Stakes Sept. 19. Trainer Chad Brown tabs Javier Castellano to ride once again.
The David Jacobson-trained Roman Invader returned from the win to set the pace in the Beldame before faltering to finish last in the five-horse field.
Stanwyck, a lightly raced homebred for Mr. and Mr. Jerry Moss, is a daughter of Empire Maker out of Set Them Free, dam of 2005 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Giacomo and multiple grade I winner Tiago. She makes her stakes debut for trainer John Shirreffs with Alex Solis to ride.
$200,000 Turnback the Alarm Handicap (gr. III), Fillies & Mares 3 & Up, 1 1/16 Miles
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Fantasy of Flight (KY), J R Velazquez, 116, T A Pletcher
2. Street Secret (KY), J Castellano, 116, C C Brown
3. Lady Cohiba (KY), J Alvarado, 116, C Clement
4. Stanwyck (KY), A O Solis, 114, J A Shirreffs
5. Moon Philly (PA), C H Velasquez, 115, M J Trombetta
6. Centring (KY), J Rosario, 117, T Albertrani
7. Royal Lahaina (KY), J L Ortiz, 116, T A Pletcher
8. Roman Invader (KY), D Cohen, 116, D Jacobson
Blinkers Off: Fantasy of Flight