A dozen 3-year-old fillies have signed up to do battle on the Keeneland turf Oct. 17 in the $150,000 Pin Oak Valley View Stakes (gr. IIIT). In a wide-open field, Frank Calabrese’s Dreaming of Liz has the stakes experience edge.
Dreaming of Liz has already captured a pair of stakes at the Valley View distance of 1 1/16 miles, having won the Double Delta Stakes in May and the Sweetest Chant Stakes in July at Arlington Park. She also took the Arlington-Washington Lassie there in 2007. Although Dreaming of Liz was most recently 11th in the Pucker Up Stakes (gr. III) in September, she might enjoy a class edge here for trainer Wayne Catalano.
The most accomplished runner earnings-wise in the Valley View is the “house horse,” Much Obliged, who is owned by Pin Oak Stable, the sponsor of the race. The daughter of Kingmambo took the American One Thousand Guineas in May at Arlington Park, and then finished second to My Princess Jess in June in the Boiling Springs Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park. My Princess Jess came back to run third in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes (gr. IT) at Keeneland Oct. 11. Much Obliged finished sixth behind QE II victor Alwajeeha in the Appalachian Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland in April. She has banked $214,754.
Forest Trail, owned by Phipps Stable and Stuart Janney III, is multiple stakes placed, having finished second in the Statuette Stakes at Belmont Park and the Little Silver Stakes at Monmouth, and third in the Boiling Springs. Helen Alexander and Helen Groves’ Acoma won the Dogwood Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs in May and was second in the Monmouth Oaks (gr. III) in August, and has banked $179,564 to date.
Maybry Farm’s Miss Challenge has recent form in her corner, having taken the Statuette at a mile on grass after an allowance score at Saratoga over the same distance on turf.
Both Scolara and Tight Precision are stakes placed at Arlington Park, while Grenadia makes her U.S. debut after finishing second in a stakes in France.
All runners will carry 117 pounds except Dreaming of Liz, who has been assigned 119.
The field, in post position order with riders:
1) Julia Tuttle (R. Mojica Jr.)
2) Scolara (Kent Desormeaux)
3) Tight Precision (Jamie Theriot)
4) Grenadia (Shawn Bridgmohan)
5) Absolutely Smart (J.L. Castanon)
6) Dreaming of Liz (E. Baird)
7) Clear Pond (Rene Douglass)
8) Much Obliged (Robby Alabarado)
9) Miss Challenge (Ramon Dominguez)
10) Acoma (Julien Leparoux)
11) Forest Trail (John Velazquez)
12) Stealin’ Kisses (Calvin Borel)
AE) Absolutely Cindy (Corey Lanerie)