She has been the talk of Monmouth Park, but Miss Matched will get a big test at Saratoga Race Course on Friday, when she goes to post in the 113th running of the grade II, $250,000 Spinaway for 2-year-old fillies at seven furlongs.Miss Matched was recently purchased by trainer John Ward for owner John Oxley. Previously owned by William Perry and John Gallo, Miss Matched stalked the pace, took the lead at the three-eighths pole and sprinted away in the stretch with little urging from jockey Stewart Elliott while finishing the five furlongs in :57 4/5 in a 12 1/2-length debut victory."She ran an awesome race at Monmouth Park," Ward said. "Not only did she win by a large margin, she did it so impressively. She was never pressed to run early and pulled away with ease. Essentially, I think she is going to be a natural two-turn filly."While Perry and Gallo were deciding the future of Miss Matched, they were starting to receive offers from a variety of owners, trainers,and agents. Then Perry and Gallo got the offer they couldn't refuse -- Oxley's offer that was reportedly in the "high, six figures." "She was heavily sought," Ward said. "We were eventually contacted by an agent who told us about this filly and we followed the trail."Miss Matched has been at Ward's barn since the beginning of the Saratoga meet and he has been pleased with the progression she has made."I've been very satisfied since we bought her," Ward said. "Her workouts have been to my expectation. I think she is a fitter horse now than she was at Monmouth."As much as Ward would like to win the Spinaway with Miss Matched, he is looking at the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships at Lone Star Park on Oct. 30 as the seasonal goal.
"The Spinaway will be a stepping stone to bigger and better things," Ward said. "If she puts in a good effort by finishing first, second or third, we'll be totally happy. We just want to earn enough points to get to the Breeders' Cup"Miss Matched will be tested in the Spinaway by Classic Elegance, winner of the grade II Schuylerville on Saratoga's opening day card. Not only is Classic Elegance a graded stakes winner, she has proven she can win on any surface, whether it is on or off the pace."She's versatile and has a very mature mind for her age," said Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas. "When you put her together with (her jockey) Pat Day, she can be very tough."The field for the Spinaway Stakes, in post position order, with jockey and weight:1--Classic Elegance, Pat Day, 121
2--Punch Appeal, Cornelio Velasquez, 121
3--Miss Matched, Robby Albarado, 121
4--Sense of Style, Edgar Prado, 121
5--Portsea, John Velazquez, 121
6--Play With Fire, Pablo Fragoso, 121
7--Broadway Gold, Jerry Bailey, 121