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HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – A field of 11 fillies and mares 4 and up will sprint 5 furlongs over the Gulfstream Park turf course in the 10th event of an 11-race card on Friday, May 8.
The conditions for the allowance/optional claiming race are non-winners of $10,000 twice other than maiden, claiming, starter, or state-bred allowances, or which have never won three races, or a claiming price of $50,000. Here is a preview of the full field:
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1. R Happy Ending (9/2) – The Georgina Baxter trainee hit the board the second time in as many stakes starts last time out, finishing third in the 5-furlong Lightning City Stakes over the Tampa Bay Downs turf. The 5-year-old daughter of Prospective has a record of 9-3-3-2 at this distance, but her connections are risking her for $50k in order to meet the race conditions.
2. Regal Chant (15/1) – A five-race win streak came to a halt two back when she finished fourth in the Presque Isle Downs Masters Stakes (G2), but Regal Chant rebounded last time out to defeat allowance/optional claiming foes. This will mark her first attempt on turf after winning 6 of 8 on a synthetic surface and missing in both dirt starts.
3. Charmaine’s Mia (10/1) – After finding stakes waters too deep in her last two starts, she returns to a level where she was victorious three back over this same course and distance. The 4-year-old daughter of The Factor posted a career-best 87 Beyer speed figure while defeating a pair of rivals whom she will face again here.
4. Nikee Kan (12/1) – Heading into 2020, she had hit the board in all but one of her 5-furlong turf sprints (7-3-2-1), but making her seasonal debut in the Captiva Island Stakes here on March 7 may have been too much to ask, as she finished seventh. Her most recent effort was a well-beaten third in a sloppy off-turf sprint, but if she can return to her prior form, this 5-year-old Kantharos mare could make noise at a price.
5. Lady Grace (4/1) – After she broke her maiden in her sixth start while covering 5 furlongs over the Woodbine synthetic surface, trainer Mark Casse pushed her to face stakes foes in a 6 1/2-furlong turf sprint at Woodbine last June, where she finished third before taking the rest of the year off. She has rattled off two straight wins over this course and distance since returning in January and appears to be improving with every start.
6. Hidden Facts (7/2) – If not for having to steady late, she might have won the Captiva Island Stakes over the same course and distance on March 7. She did not break her maiden until her seventh start, which happened to be her first turf sprint, and she either won or finished within 1 3/4 lengths of the winner in every turf sprint since – including when Charmaine’s Mia nailed her at the wire three back.
7. Dixieincandyland (8/1) – After breaking her maiden while turf sprinting at Ellis Park last August, she took the rest of the year off and returned to finish second over this same course and distance on March 6. Her second start off of the layoff produced her second victory and a career-best 79 Beyer speed figure for trainer Eddie Kenneally and jockey Joel Rosario, who rides again here.
8. Originator (12/1) – Her first start of 2020 came in the same sloppy off-turf allowance/optional claiming event as fellow rival Nikee Kan, where she finished last of eight. She returns to the turf in search of her 2018 form, which saw her finish second in the Alywow Stakes at Woodbine and the Coronation Cup at Saratoga.
9. Magic Spell (20/1) – Still a turf maiden, she enters the gate for the first time this year and is winless since October 2018 at Woodbine. She compiled a 2019 record of 8-0-3-1 while sprinting equally over Woodbine’s turf and synthetic surfaces, including a close second in the 6-furlong Royal North Stakes (G2).
10. Sanity (12/1) – She makes her return to turf for the first time since winning a 6-furlong allowance/optional claiming event at Woodbine last September. The Kelly Breen trainee was most recently a well-beaten fifth in the same sloppy off-turf allowance/optional claiming event as fellow rivals Nikee Kan and Originator.
11. Kitten’s Covergirl (6/1) – She has been knocking on the door in her most recent turf sprint efforts, compiling a record of 4-0-2-2 during that span. This will be her second start since finishing 1 1/2 lengths behind Charmaine’s Mia and Hidden Facts over this same course and distance.
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