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Aqueduct Preview | Key Cents Stakes 2023: Ashburn Alley Makes Stakes Debut
Aqueduct racing (NYRA)

Aqueduct Preview | Key Cents Stakes 2023: Ashburn Alley Makes Stakes Debut

Robert G. Hahn, Emcee Stable and Two Eight Racing’s Ashburn Alley will make her stakes debut in Saturday’s $100,000 Key Cents for New York-bred juvenile fillies traveling six furlongs over the main track, at Aqueduct Racetrack.

The Key Cents is slated as Race 7 on Saturday’s 10-race card which also features the Grade 2, $250,000 Hill Prince in Race 5, the $150,000 Aqueduct Turf Sprint Championship in Race 9, and the $100,000 Notebook in Race 4. First post is 11:50 a.m. Eastern.

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The Tapiture bay, bred by Davie Bloodstock and Peter Colon, was a 3 1/2-length winner of her October 21 debut here in a six-furlong state-bred maiden special weight conducted over a sloppy and sealed surface for her former trainer Kelly Breen.

Ashburn Alley was transferred following that effort to conditioner Tom Morley, who saddled sixth-place finisher Miss Bourbon in the aforementioned maiden score.

“I was very fortunate to pick up this filly. I ran against her first time out and thought she was extremely impressive,” Morley said. “She showed good speed on a difficult drying and sealed track which is never easy footing to get a handle of. They told me they thought she was a very talented filly beforehand.”

Ashburn Alley is a half-sister to stakes-winner Howdyoumakeurmoney and 10-time winner Mosienko, who posted half of those scores at the Big A.

“It’s a family that loves Aqueduct. We haven’t had her all that long, but she’s done everything right since she came into us,” Morley said. “She’s a tall, scopey filly and very pleasant to be around. With a natural progression from her first start, you would hope she’d be live in here.”

Ashburn Alley worked a half-mile in 49.06 seconds on November 9 on the Belmont Park main track under Hall of Famer Javier Castellano, who will pilot Ashburn Alley from post 7.

“She’s been like picking up an older horse, to be honest. She’s settled in very well. She’s not a heavy filly, so we haven’t overdone the work with her,” Morley said. “Javier breezed her last week and thought she went beautifully. We’ll find out how good she is this weekend.”

The $135,000 purchase at the OBS June 2-Year-Olds and Horses of Racing Age Sale is out of the Elusive Quality mare Exclusively Yours, who is a half-sister to graded stakes-placed General Charley and stakes-winner Truly Lucky.

Richard Greeley’s Cara’s Time [post 3, Dylan Davis] will return to sprinting for trainer Mitchell Friedman. The Not This Time bay, who has competed exclusively in state-bred company, finished a pacesetting second last out to My Mane Squeeze in the one-turn mile Maid of the Mist on October 29 here.

With returning pilot Dylan Davis up, Cara’s Time set splits of 23.97 seconds, 48.74 and 1:14.04 over the fast and sealed main track, holding onto a narrow lead at the stretch call before being collared inside the final furlong by My Mane Squeeze, who prevailed by three-lengths in a final time of 1:38.73.

Cara’s Time graduated at first asking in June in a five-furlong sprint at Belmont and returned two months later to finish a distant fifth in the six-furlong Seeking the Ante at Saratoga Race Course. She returned to winning ways in September at Belmont at the Big A, coasting gate-to-wire to take the seven-furlong Joseph A. Gimma over sloppy and sealed going.

Cara’s Time breezed a swift half-mile in 48.11 seconds October 23 over the Belmont main track.

The $175,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Preferred New York-bred Yearling Sale purchase, bred by Stephen Crestani, Jr., is out of the Macho Uno mare Zindra, who is a half-sister to multiple stakes-placed Bahia Beach. Cara’s Time’s third dam, the graded stakes-winning Relaxing Rhythm, produced graded stakes-winner Spring Waltz.

Bregman Family Racing, Jackpot Farm and Swinbank Stables’ Soloshot [post 6, Manny Franco] will put her undefeated record on the line for trainer George Weaver.

The Solomini dark bay, purchased for $290,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale, romped by 7 3/4-lengths in her August debut at the Spa when traveling gate-to-wire in a 5 1/2-furlong off-the-turf state-bred maiden special weight.

She followed last out with a similar frontrunning score in the 5 1/2-furlong state-bred Lady Finger on September 25 at Finger Lakes, besting maiden longshot Redwineandwhiskey by two lengths.

Soloshot, bred by Rhapsody Farm, is out of the multiple stakes-placed Twirling Candy mare Sweet Queen, who is a half-sister to graded stakes-winner Queen Of the Catsle.

Shea D Boy’s Stable’s My Shea D Lady [post 1, Jose Ortiz] will remove blinkers as she looks to improve upon her pace-pressing fourth last out in the Joseph A. Gimma.

Trained by Carlos David, the Solomini dark bay won her five-furlong debut in July over a Gulfstream Park main track rated good. She settled in fifth-of-6 in the Seeking the Ante eventually landing third when defeated 8 1/4-lengths by the victorious Caldwell Luvs Gold.

The $100,000 OBS Spring Sale of 2-Year-Olds in training purchase has breezed back five times since the Joseph A. Gimma, including a bullet-half mile over Big Sandy in 47.22 on November 4.

Bred by McMahon of Saratoga Thoroughbreds, My Shea D Lady is out of the Teufelsberg mare Ladyberg, who is a half-sister to multiple stakes-winner Hoosick Falls and stakes-placed Manor Prospect.

Rounding out the field are a stakes-placed pair of contenders for trainer Jeremiah Englehart in Unicorn Cake [post 8, Kendrick Carmouche] and Tricky Temper [post 5, Irad Ortiz, Jr.]; and maiden winners Alley’s Song [post 2, Joel Rosario] for trainer Brad Cox, and Brown Suga Babe [post 4, Keimar Trotman], who adds blinkers for owner/trainer Michael Jones, Jr.