Speelman, Dugan On War Path With Drysdale

(from Hollywood Park notes)
Owner Anthony Speelman, a London art dealer, and bloodstock agent Shawn Dugan, wife of trainer Neil Drysdale, have enjoyed more than their share of success together.

Dugan has purchased four Thoroughbreds for Speelman in six years, and all have become stakes winners or stakes-placed for the Drysdale stable. Girl Warrior, a 4-year-old filly, seeks her second grade II victory in the $150,000 Bayakoa Handicap for fillies and mares at Hollywood Park on Sunday. Your Tent Or Mine, winner of the Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) on Nov. 19, will return in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) for 2-year-olds on Dec. 17.

Dugan purchased Girl Warrior, a chestnut daughter of Elusive Quality, for $120,000 at the 2002 Keeneland September yearling sale. She started her career with Paul Cole in England but was winless in four starts when Speelman shipped her to Drysdale in the summer of 2004.

"He (Speelman) thought she would do well on the dirt, and she has done well since," Dugan said Thursday. Girl Warrior broke her maiden in her first try with Drysdale at Del Mar, won an allowance race at Hollywood on Dec. 10 and captured the El Encino Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita in January.

"She beat A.P. Adventure in the El Encino," recalled Duggan of the photo-finish verdict over the highly regarded favorite. "She's a real warrior. She just puts her body on the ground. She fights back like a colt."

Speelman named the filly after one of his daughters, Lucy. "When the family went on a safari in Kenya, Lucy took part in a war dance with some of the locals," Dugan explained.

Girl Warrior will be ridden by Victor Espinoza under 117 pounds in a Bayakoa lineup expected to include: Dream of Summer, Patrick Valenzuela, 122; Island Fashion, Garrett Gomez, 119; Halo Ola, Alex Solis, 117, and Star Parade, Martin Pedroza, 116.

Your Tent Or Mine, with Valenzuela up, is expected to be a leading threat in a Futurity field. Also expected to contend are Brother Derek, A.P. Warrior, Bob and John and Bashert.

Dugan bought the 2-year-old colt at the Fasig Tipton Sale at Calder in February for $250,000 and Speelman gave him the clever name. "He's by Forest Camp out of Shes Got the Look," said Dugan. "He (Speelman) thought Your Tent Or Mine was a sexy combination of those two names."

Speelman, who is scheduled to fly here from London for the Futurity, also has teamed with Dugan and Drysdale with stakes winner Arabic Song and stakes-placed Haka Girl.