Ender's Sister Faces Local Fillies at Monmouth

(from Monmouth report)
With half the field boasting victories over the track, there's plenty of local angles to Sunday's 80th running of the $200,000 Monmouth Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. II) at Oceanport, N.J.

Capeside Lady, Habiboo, and Rings and Things are all coming off Monmouth Park wins. Capeside Lady and Habiboo are stabled at Monmouth. Rings and Things will ship in from Saratoga.

They'll battle invading Ender's Sister, a stakes-winning filly in Florida earlier this year who is the 9-5 morning line favorite in the field of six.

If the track is sloppy Sunday, as expected, Capeside Lady would gain an edge in the 1 1/6-mile Oaks. The daughter of Cape Town, owned by So Madcapt Stable and trained by Todd Pletcher, has won three of four starts on wet tracks, including the Little Silver Stakes last out. Capeside Lady reveled in the slop that day, winning off by 13 1/2 lengths under Chris DeCarlo.

Pletcher assistant Anthony Sciametta Jr., who is quite familiar with Capeside Lady, trains the filly at Monmouth.

"Not too many people know that she trained here at Monmouth last year before she made her first start," Sciametta said. "We got her ready here, but she went in a maiden race at Saratoga because she's a New York-bred. She won by almost nine lengths."

Capeside Lady came back to Monmouth for the Sorority (gr. III) last August. She finished last of eight, nearly 20 lengths behind Feline Story.

"She got off bad, she was wide, everything went wrong," Sciametta said. "It was just one of those things, her only bad race. A throw-out."

The filly finished her juvenile season by winning two stakes for New York-bred fillies at Belmont.

In her first two starts as a 3-year-old, she was third in the Bouwerie in May, and third in the Funistrada Stakes in June. In the Little Silver on July 5, Capeside Lady looked right at home at Monmouth with her big score.

"She's really doing well here," Sciametta said. "And if it's sloppy, it will be great. It will help her and maybe hinder some of the others."

Habiboo, owned and trained by Amy Tarrant, has won her last two at Monmouth. The first came on July 9 by an eye-catching 18 lengths, and her most recent on July 29 by more than seven lengths.

The Unbirdled's Song filly, a $210,000 yearling purchase, will be the first stakes starter for Tarrant, who is in her second year as a trainer.

Tarrant will be racing south Sunday morning to saddle Habiboo in the Oaks. Saturday, she's hosting her daughter's wedding at her home in Burlington, Vermont.

Rings and Things resumes what has been a highly successful collaboration between trainer Patrick Biancone and jockey Joe Bravo. The combo has clicked for six wins and one third in eight starts at the meet.

Bravo, Monmouth's leading rider, won the Haskell Invitational (gr. I) Aug. 8 aboard the Biancone-trained Lion Heart, and earlier this meet took the Jersey Shore Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) on the Biancone-trained Pomeroy.

Last out, Bravo partnered Rings and Things to a 7 1/2-length score in an allowance race at Monmouth on July 29, the filly's first victory since she broke her maiden at Hollywood Park last November.

"She's doing wonderfully," Biancone said. "She will ship the same as Lion Heart, arriving at Monmouth on Sunday morning."

$200,000 Monmouth Breeders' Cup Oaks (gr. II, 5:16 p.m. ET), 3-year-old fillies, 1 1/16 mile
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Hopelessly Devoted (FL), Mark Guidry, 118, 5/1
2. Capeside Lady (NY), Christopher P. DeCarlo, 115, 2/1
3. Pilfer (KY), Stewart Elliott, 118, 6/1
4. Rings and Things (FL), Joe Bravo, 115, 7/2
5. Habiboo (KY), John A. Soto, Jr., 115, 10/1
6. Ender's Sister (KY), Cornelio H. Velasquez, 118, 9/5