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Purple Violet, Springfield Stakes Top Saturday Card
State-bred sophomores of both sexes will be featured Saturday at Arlington International Racecourse with the running of the $100,000 Purple Violet Stakes for fillies and its open counterpart the $100,000 Springfield Stakes. Each race will be run at one mile over Polytrack.
It should come as no surprise that trainer Chris Block dominated the entry box for Purple Violet with the conditioner saddling three of the nine entrants – Team Block’s I O Ireland, Richard Otto Stables’ Alette and Timothy Keeley’s My Option.
My Option, the Illinois Champion 2-Year-Old Filly of 2012, comes into the Springfield off a dominating victory in the $100,000 Pretty Jenny Stakes at Hawthorne Race Course April 27. The win was her third straight after previously breaking her maiden and winning the $125,000 Pat Whitworth Debutante as a 2-year-old. In her lone trip over Polytrack last year, the daughter Belong to Me finished second in a 5 ½-furlong maiden race. Eduardo Perez, who has been aboard My Option in every one of her starts, retains the mount.
I O Ireland faces state-breds for the first time since breaking her maiden over the Arlington turf course on closing day of the 2012 season. She followed that with an open company score over the Keeneland turf in October but has been winless in three starts since though she was facing open stakes company in those events. Eddie Castro has been named to ride the daughter of champion Giant’s Causeway.
Alette, the third member of the Block triumvirate, broke her maiden by more than 14 lengths when scoring over a sloppy racetrack at Hawthorne in April in her 2013 debut and only her second start overall. Jeffrey Sanchez will ride.
In addition to the Block trio others in the Purple Violet include Ken & Sarah Ramsey’s Bold Kitten with Florent Geroux riding for trainer Wayne Catalano; S D Brilie Ltd. Partnership’s Beeway with Rosemary Homeister Jr. aboard the Christine Janks trainee; Patricia’s Hope’s Case Cracker James Graham to ride for trainer Larry Rivelli; William Stiritz’s Scarlet Power with Chris Emigh in the irons aboard the Scott Becker charge; Dennis Stanley’s Misty Miranda with Julio Felix getting the mount astride the Steve Manley sophomore; and Sharon Morgan’s Julmae with Tim Thornton getting a leg up from trainer John Wainwright.
In the Springfield, Frank Irvin’s Feat the Kitten makes his state-bred debut after facing significantly more difficult company earlier this year. The Mike Maker-trained son of Kitten’s Joy was on the Triple Crown trail, finishing third in the Grade III LeComte at the Fair Grounds and second in the Grade III Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park before finishing mid-pack in both the Grade III Spiral at Turfway and Grade I Blue Grass at Keeneland. Francisco Torres, the 2012 Arlington riding champion, picks up the mount.
Delbridge, Martin, Hammond & Ficke’s Purging the Stone blew up the tote board by scoring at odds of 43-1 in the $100,000 Land of Lincoln at Hawthorne on April 27. Trained by Jerry Hammond, the son of Purge is hoping lightning can strike twice in state-bred stakes company. Uriel Lopez rides.
Others in the Springfield include: the Asiel Stable-owned duo of Lassell (James Graham) and Smokin Glock (Rosemary Homeister Jr.), both are trained by Carlos Silva; Valerie Peterson & Krystle Holsapple’s Flathead River with Edgar Perez accepting the mount from trainer Don Millonas; John Carver’s Reigning Catfish, trained by Tom Swearingen and ridden by Seth Martinez; Law Dog Stable’s Lahshad with Florent Geroux named to ride the Andy Hansen trainee; Hernandez Racing Club’s Ultimo Trago, Constantino Roman riding for trainer Armando De la cerda; Kathy Halleran’s Sir Bob, a winner at the distance over this course for trainer Jim DiVito with E. T. Baird getting the mount; and Keith & Justin Johns’ Massive Explosion with Emmanuel Esquivel aboard for trainer Justin Johns.