Jockey Javier Castellano rides Ginger Brew for trainer Brian Lynch in a full field of 12 fillies and mares drawn for the 1 1/16 miles turf test. After her Calder Oaks victory last spring, the Canadian-bred daughter of Milwaukee Brew won the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks on Polytrack on June 8 by six lengths and two weeks later finished a game second by a head as the favorite in the $1 million Queen’s Plate.
The Marshua’s River is a wide-open affair and other contenders that will attract support include Live Oak Plantation’s Remarkable Remy, Eibar Coa; Darley Stable’s Sea Chanter, Chris DeCarlo; and Zayat Stable’s Mushka, Kent Desormeaux.
Remarkable Remy is a 4-year-old daughter of Hennessy trained by John Kimmel who was in top form late last year, capturing the Pebbles Stakes going a mile at Belmont Park in mid-October and a running a strong second in the Rare Blend at Aqueduct on Nov. 4. The roan/gray filly was a $200,000 Saratoga yearling sales purchase.
Sea Chanter finished seventh last out in the My Charmer Handicap (G3) at Calder on Dec. 6 with a big excuse: The 4-year-old daughter of War Chant was shuffled back to last in the field of 12 early and didn’t get clear until too late in the stretch. The Todd Pletcher charge was beaten less than five lengths in a high-class field.
Sea Chanter established her turf credentials winning the Epitome Breeders’ Cup during Breeders’ Cup weekend at Monmouth Park in 2007 and shipped to California to capture the Miesque Stakes (G3) at Hollywood Park late that season.
Mushka won the Demoiselle Stakes on the main track at Aqueduct late in her 2-year-old campaign for trainer Bill Mott, but was no match for division leaders on dirt last summer when finishing a distant fourth to Proud Spell and Music Note in the Alabama Stakes (G1) at Saratoga. The 4-year-old daughter of Empire Maker was a $1.6 million Saratoga yearling purchase and looked good winning her last start Keeneland turf allowance on Oct. 3.
Completing the field for the Marshua’s River are Elisabeth Alexander’s Sousaphone, Dennis Federico’s Waquoit’s Love, Farnsworth Farm’s Jeux de Danse, Mr Amore Stable’s American Border, Walts David Stable’s Beau Dare, Brian Rose’s Ballymore Lady, Hidden Creek Farm’s Street Sounds, Joe Straus II and Andrew Novak’s Alpha Charmer, D and E Horses and Herman Wilensky’s Cozzi Capital and Team Valor’s Audacious Chloe.
Left on the ‘also-eligible’ list were Lucille Gernais’ Cat Can Do and Kinsman Stable’s Fancy Fusaichi, both entered ‘main track only’ for the chance wet weather forced the race off turf.