Valentine Dancer Strides Away in Ramser

(from Oak Tree report)
Long-striding Valentine Dancer took the lead in the final furlong and kicked away for a three-length victory Sunday in the $113,900 Harold C. Ramser Sr. Handicap for 3-year-old fillies at Oak Tree.

Ridden by Pat Valenzuela at 116 pounds, Valentine Dancer ran one mile in 1:32.87 and paid $9.40, $5.60 and $4. Craig Lewis is the trainer for Al and Sandee Kirkwood of Vancouver, Wash.

The time broke the stakes record of 1:33.42 set by Flawlessly in 1991.

It was Valentine Dancer's fourth victory in 13 starts and her first stakes triumph. The $68,340 winner's share increased her earnings to $242,826.

Fencelineneighbor, Jose Valdivia Jr. riding at 118 pounds, rallied to finish second and returned $6 and $5.20. Shezsospiritual, ridden by Tony Farina at 33-1, finished third at a $12.40 show return.

"She ran a great race," Valenzuela said. "She was sitting comfortably about sixth position down the backside and around the turn she inched up on them. Through the stretch I asked her to run and she picked it up very strongly."

Lewis said he would point Valentine Dancer to the California Cup on Nov. 8 and the Sunshine Millions beyond that next January.

(Chart, Equibase)