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Coglianese Photos/Lauren King

Fawkes Plans 2016 Campaign for Sheer Drama

Eclipse Award finalist currently at owner Harold Queen's farm in Florida.

Sheer Drama, an Eclipse Award finalist for champion older female of 2015, will race this year, trainer David Fawkes said Jan. 9.

The multiple grade I-winning 6-year-old mare bred and owned by Harold Queen has been her owner's farm in Ocala, Fla., since November. Sheer Drama, by Burning Roma, finished fourth in last year's Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I).

"She'll get started up at Harold's farm and he'll put a little bottom on her and a get a little exercise into her," Fawkes said. "He might breeze her one time up there and when she's ready get her down here. Hopefully she'll be here in about a month.

"She looks great. Harold said she's running around the paddock and feeling great. He told me this morning she's kicking and bucking and playing. It's only January. We've got a long summer in front of us. We've got plenty of time."

Fawkes, based at Gulfstream Park, said he isn't sure whether the mare will compete there during the current meet. Her first three races of 2015 were at Gulfstream, followed by two starts at Churchill Downs. Her two grade I wins came in the Delaware Handicap at Delaware Park and the Personal Ensign Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.

"We'll try to follow a similar pattern as last year," Fawkes said. "I don't know if we can be ready for anything here. It would give me three months to get her ready for Churchill. I have to go up to Ocala at the end of the month for the races up there, and when I do I'll talk to Harold and we'll see."

Sheer Drama finished 2015 with three wins, four seconds, and $1,234,720 in earnings from eight starts. The other two candidates for champion older female are Beholder, the heavy favorite, and Stopchargingmaria, who won the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

"I'm thrilled to be one of the last three finalists," Fawkes said. "To be honest, the way the year started I didn't see it coming. It was a pleasant surprise. Every race was exciting. Unfortunately, we drew a really bad post position in the Breeders' Cup but for her still to be fourth, she ran a huge race."