Friday, April 13, 2012


BOLD AFFAIR HEADLINES SATURDAY’S PRIMONETTA STAKES


BALTIMORE, 04-12-12---Fillies and mares take the spotlight in Saturday’s feature offering at Pimlico Race Course, the $75,000 Primonetta Stakes. Recent stakes winner Bold Affair is the 3-1 morning line favorite to capture the 6-furlong test on the main track.

Bold Affair has won five of nine starts for trainer Howard Wolfendale. The Two Punch filly is two for three at Pimlico, including her maiden score in her debut and a third place finish in the Miss Preakness Stakes last year. Her latest effort was a galloping victory in Laurel Park’s Conniver Stakes under Abel Castellano, who retains the mount.


Graham Motion started training Valiant Passion (7-2) after a two year old campaign in which she finished third in the G1 Spinaway and fourth in the G1 Frizette. Motion’s only try with the Lion Heart filly resulted in an easy, 6-1/2 length victory against allowance company at Saratoga in July. She hasn’t started since. Luis Garcia will ride.

Hamilton Smith will saddle Aquitania (4-1) who has won five of her last seven starts. Her last three efforts were against stakes company, finishing third in Aqueduct’s Interborough, fourth in the Barbara Fritchie (G2) at Laurel and first in the Lynclar Stakes in New York. Sheldon Russell, who won two races aboard the Leroidesanimaux filly last year, regains the mount. Smith has cross entered Aquitania in Saturday’s Distaff Handicap (G2) at Aqueduct.

“I don’t know what I am going to do. It would be better to place in a Grade 2 but we’ll make a decision by tomorrow morning,” Smith said. “She is bred for grass but has turned into a pretty honest sprinter on the dirt. She is doing great leading into either race.”

Smith is still basking in the glory of Done Talking’s upset victory in the Illinois Derby (G3) at Hawthorne Saturday afternoon. Smith hopes the son of Broken Vow will make his next start in the Kentucky Derby (G1) on May 5.

“It was very exciting and we are hoping to stay in the top 20,” added Smith. “There are a couple races this weekend (Arkansas Derby and Blue Grass Stakes) that could bump us below the line but we are hoping to make the trip to Louisville next month and enjoy it. I really expected him to run well and was not surprised by the result. He was training well leading into the race.”

Jamie Ness has cross-entered Lady of Greatness (4-1) in both the Primonetta and Charles Town’s Sugar Maple Stakes. A $10,000 claim in 2010, Lady of Greatness has won nine times in thirty-five starts. This will be her first stakes attempt. No rider is named.

Speedy Maple Forest (6-1) will represent Todd Pletcher’s powerful stable. The Forestry filly can count a victory in Monmouth’s Dearly Precious Stakes among her three lifetime wins. Forest Boyce has the mount.

The remainder of the field includes New York shipper Enchante (8-1), the Jonathan Sheppard trained Armarante (20-1) and locally-based Terra Rolla (20-1).

Saturday’s promotion is the Wild West Comes To Pimlico, which includes a BBQ and Brew Fest for $25 featuring western entertainment and country music standouts Detour with an additional $10 for craft beer sampling. On-track events will feature performances by Hi Ho Silver and the Lone Ranger (after race 1), bull herding (after race 2), trick riding (after race 3) and roman riding (after race 5).


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BallHype: hype it up!

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