The $150,000 Long Island, a 1 1/2-mile turf event for fillies and mares, is carded as race eight of nine with an approximate post time of 3:43 p.m. EST.
In recent times, the 5-year-old Smart Strike mare led the entire way to win the Sept. 3 Glens Falls Handicap (gr. IIIT) by 1 1/2 lengths at Saratoga Race Course, then yielded to seventh when she stepped up in class for the Sept. 29 Flower Bowl Invitational (gr. IT) at Belmont Park.
Buzz Tenney, assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey, said Stuart S. Janney's homebred should find the class level of the Long Island more to her liking. She was installed as the 5-2 favorite on the morning line and leaves post position 2 under Javier Castellano.
"She's going to be up in the (Long Island) maybe on the lead, going that far," Tenney said. "She'll have control of the race, I think. We'll see if she can get the trip. I think she can; she did it last year. She worked a half on Monday (in 50.03 seconds), which is her kind of work, and galloped out good. She's honest, she tries, and we'll see what happens."
In June, Hit It Rich finished third in Belmont's New York Stakes (gr. IIT), which was won by Cheyenne Stables' Mystical Star, the 3-1 second choice on the morning line.
Since the New York, Mystical Star has finished eighth in the Beverly D. (gr. IT) in August at Arlington Park and second over the artificial surface at Keeneland in the Oct. 7 Spinster (gr. I), in which she rallied four wide and grabbed the lead in the stretch before being outrun.
"I just hope it doesn't rain too much," said Christophe Loriuel, assistant to trainer Christophe Clement. "We'll get some rain, but I hope it dries out by Saturday because I think she's a better filly when it's not too soft."
The Long Island will be the first North American start for Aigue Marine, who enters the race off a triumph in a 1 1/2-mile listed stakes against males in August at Clairefontaine in France.
"She's an improving 3-year-old filly," said Christophe Clement, whose brother, Nicolas, trains Aigue Marine for Haras du Mezeray and Skymarc Farm. "The dam, Aiglonne, came to the states and I trained her. She was a useful 1 1/2-mile type."
The daughter of Galileo faces older runners for the first time. After the race, she will join Christophe Clement's barn.
Kissable, who won the Waya in August at Saratoga in her second North American start, will ship in from Toronto in an attempt to pick up her first graded win in the Long Island. Trained by Roger Attfield for Three Chimneys Racing and Lordship Stud, Kissable was third in the Glens Falls and fourth in the Oct. 14 E.P. Taylor (gr. IT) at Woodbine.
"She's done very well (since arriving in North America) as we anticipated she would," Attfield remarked. "She seems to be getting better. She's going to race next year, but the turf in Florida is probably a bit too firm for her liking, so this is a good spot for her."
The field also includes Starformer, a graded stakes winner who was fourth in the Spinster; Tannery, third in the Garden City (gr. IT) and eighth in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (gr. IT); The West Rim, claimed for $16,000 in her most recent start; Senada, fourth in Keeneland's Dowager; and Clarinet, victorious in Woodbine's Flaming Page. Centring was entered for the main track only.
$150,000 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIIT, Race 8, approximate post time 3:43 p.m. EST), fillies & mares 3YO&Up, 1 1/2 miles (turf)
PP, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, Odds
1. Starformer (KY), E.S. Prado, 117, W I Mott, 8-1
2. Hit It Rich (KY), J. Castellano, 119, C R McGaughey III, 5-2
3. Tannery (IRE), A. Garcia, 115, A E Goldberg, 8-1
4. Kissable (IRE), J.R. Velazquez, 117, R L Attfield, 4-1
5. Mystical Star (KY), R.A. Dominguez, 118, C Clement, 3-1
6. Aique Marine (GB), I. Ortiz, Jr., 113, N Clement, 6-1
7. The West Rim (KY), R. Maragh, 112, N Chatterpaul, 30-1
8. Senada (KY), C.H. Velazquez, 115, J E Sheppard, 20-1
9. Clarinet (KY), J. Rosario, 115, J Carroll, 15-1
10. Centring (KY) (MTO), TBA, 117, T Albertrani , 3-1