Ebony Breeze, one of several fillies and mares who ran against tougher company in their last start, should prove a slight favorite in Saturday's six-furlong Endine Handicap (gr. III) at Delaware Park.
By Belong to Me
, Ebony Breeze won the My Juliet at Philadelphia Park two starts back. Shipped to Saratoga, she then ran second in the Honorable Miss Handicap (gr. II) for trainer Bill Mott.
A seven-time stakes winner, Ebony Breeze is a homebred for George Steinbrenner's Kinsman Farm. She won the Endine last year by three lengths over Umpateedle, who returns to face her again. Sent off 4-5 a year ago, Ebony Breeze made a big move from last and drew off to win by three lengths. Herberto Castillo Jr., who rode Ebony Breeze to victory in the Endine last year, will be back aboard.
Umpateedle, trained by Mark Shuman, won the Light Hearted Handicap at Delaware in July and then also ran in the Honorable Miss, finishing fifth. Owned by Michael Gill and to be ridden by Aaron Gryder, she is by Suave Prospect and a winner of 15 races from 50 starts.
Sensibly Chic, who won the grade II Vagrancy Handicap at Belmont in June, should also be a top contender. The daughter of Distorted Humor
then faced Madcap Escapade in the Princess Rooney Handicap (gr. II) at Calder and finished sixth.
Owned by Lois Nervitt and trained by Tim Tullock Jr., Sensibly Chic will be ridden by Abel Castellano Jr.
One who could jump up is Thats Our Song, who makes her first stakes start for trainer Tim Ritchey. Owned by Carol McCarthy and Jennnifer Sinapius, she has won four of five starts including her last three, an allowance and two optional claimers, all at Delaware. Jeremy Rose will ride the daughter of Thats Our Buck.The field, in post order, with jockeys and weight assignments:
Clay's Rocket, 114, Aaron Gryder
Schedule, 113, Jose Velez Jr.
Sensibly Chic, 117, Abel Castellano Jr.
Prospective Saint, 115, Roberto Alvarado Jr.
Storm Minstrel, 115, Mario Pino
A Vision in Gray, 114, Jeremy Rose
Umpateedle, 116, Aaron Gryder
Ebony Breeze, 118, Herberto Castillo Jr.
Thats Our Song, 113, Jeremy Rose