Smarty Deb, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Smart Strike--Taste the Passion (by Wild Again) blitzed males in the Gottstein Futurity at Emerald Downs last month. She is four-for-four in her career.
Sixteen fillies were pre-entered in the 1 1/16-mile Juvenile Fillies and Smarty Deb was among the seven horses selected for the race by a panel of racing secretaries and directors. The other seven earned their way in based on points accumulated in graded stakes.
"I'm elated. I cried tears of joy," trainer Doris Harwood said of Smarty Deb's selection for the race. "It's huge, absolutely huge. We are one of the best 14 juvenile fillies in the world."
Smarty Deb and stablemate Margo's Gift have been at Monmouth Park since Oct. 5. Harwood said both have adapted beautifully to the dirt surface. Margo's Gift, third in the Gottstein, runs in the $250,000 Favorite Trick Stakes at Monmouth on Oct. 26.
They are both scheduled to work five furlongs Oct. 20. Jockey Ricky Frazier, who set an Emerald Downs record with 154 wins in 2007, will be up for the drills.
Owned by Jerre Paxton's Northwest Farms, Smarty Deb has earned $121,050. Smarty Deb also beat males in her May 13 debut at Emerald Downs at 4 1/2 furlongs.
"To be honest, you never really know for sure about a horse," Harwood said. "We knew she could run, but I told Jerre (Paxton) she might need more distance."
Harwood said Smarty Deb needs to improve in the starting gate. She said the filly is scheduled to train in the gate at Monmouth this week.