Forging Oaks Farm's Ticker Tape, one of America's finest female turf stars, ships to Churchill Downs in search of a Kentucky Derby Day victory in the $100,000-added Comp USA Turf Mile (gr. IIIT) on the Matt Winn Turf Course Saturday.
The British-bred daughter of Royal Applause will be running for the first time since a close third-place finish to Intercontinental in the Matriarch (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park on Nov. 28. That setback ended a grand 2004 campaign in which the 3-year-old star won the Queen Elizabeth Challenge Cup (gr. IT) at Keeneland, the American Oaks (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park, and the Pucker Up (gr. IIIT) at Arlington Park.
The James Cassidy-trained filly has a record of 7-6-2 in 18 races with earnings of $1,267,426. Mike Smith will ride her.
"She's doing well," said Cassidy, who is based in Southern California. "She's been up at Keeneland about a month. She's never done anything wrong." Ticker Tape is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the Comp USA Turf Mile. Other contenders include Juddmonte Farm's Boasting, a daughter of Kris S. who makes her stakes debut for trainer Bobby Frankel, and Team Valor's Warning Zone, a South African import who won the Marie Krantz Memorial at the Fair Grounds in her only start in the U.S. for trainer Todd Pletcher.
Andrena Van Doren's Shaconage is back to defend her title in the Turf Mile (known last year as the Argent Mortgage Distaff Turf Mile), but she's a longshot in Saturday's field. The Mitch Shirota-trained daughter of El Prado has not raced since a third-place finish in the Honey Fox (gr. IIIT) at Gulfsteam on March 13. Shaconage also won the Locust Grove (gr. IIIT) during the 2004 Spring Meet at Churchill Downs. $100,000-added Comp USA Turf Mile Stakes (gr. IIIT, Race 7, 3:03 p.m.), fillies & mares 3 & up, 1 mile (turf)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Miss Terrible (ARG), Alex O. Solis, 117, 6/1
2. Shaconage (KY), Rafael Bejarano, 121, 10/1
3. Boasting (KY), Patrick A. Valenzuela, 117, 4/1
4. Mambo Slew (KY), Gary L. Stevens, 121, 10/1
5. Shadow Cast (KY), Robby Albarado, 123, 6/1
6. Warning Zone (SAF), John R. Velazquez, 123, 9/2
7. Ticker Tape (GB), Mike E. Smith, 121, 5/2
8. Sand Springs (KY), Jerry D. Bailey, 123, 5/1