Juddmonte Farms' homebred Sightseek, a four-time grade I winner and Eclipse Award finalist for champion older female last year, makes her second start of the 2004 campaign Sunday against just three rivals in the 1 1/8-miles Rampart Handicap (gr. II) at Gulfstream Park.
Trained by Bobby Frankel, Sightseek was a disappointing fourth in her 2004 debut at Santa Anita, finishing fourth as the 6-5 favorite in the Santa Monica Handicap (gr. I) on Jan. 25. A trip to South Florida might do the daughter of Distant View
good as she has an 0-3-0 slate in five starts at Santa Anita. Her career mark is 8-4-0 from 14 starts, however she has yet to start at Gulfstream Park.
While the field may be small, it doesn't lack for talent. Sightseek totes 121 pounds under regular rider Jerry Bailey and faces two formidable foes in Roar Emotion and Lead Story. Redoubled Miss, the fourth Rampart candidate, seems the odd mare out on paper with a 2-5-2 mark from 11 starts in the last two years and has not faced graded stakes company since a fifth-place finish in last year's Rampart.
Roar Emotion, bred in Kentucky by Brenda Jones and owned by Joseph Allen, is coming off a resounding 5 1/2-length victory in the Sabin Handicap (gr. III) at Gulfstream on Feb. 15 in her second start as a 4-year-old. The daughter of Roar
out of the Capote mare Emotional Outburst, pulled away in the stretch after battling for the lead early, getting the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.32. On Jan. 15, Roar Emotion won an allowance race at the same distance.
Raced sparingly, the 4-year-old Roar Emotion has made just eight career starts, but won the Demoiselle Stakes (gr. II) at 2, and last year captured the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II) at Pimlico for trainer Carlos Martin. Now trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, she will be ridden for the third straight time by John Velazquez.
Roar Emotion was a $30,000 Keeneland November sale weanling and a $37,000 OBS April sale 2-year-old.
A.Stevens Miles Jr.'s Lead Story capped off her 2003 campaign in spectacular fashion, rattling off wins in the Churchill Downs Distaff and Falls City Handicaps (both gr. II). The daughter of Editor's Note
, a $45,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase in 2000, finished 6 1/4-lengths behind Roar Emotion in the Sabin while making her first start since Nov. 27. The three-time stakes winner is trained by Carl Nafzger.Rampart Handicap (gr. II), 1 1/8 miles, fillies and mares, $200,000, Sunday, March 14
PP, Horse, Wgt., Jockey
1, Roar Emotion, 118, John Velazquez
2, Lead Story, 117, Calvin Borel
3, Sightseek, 121, Jerry Bailey
4, Redoubled Miss, 113 Eibar Coa