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Wide Open Pucker Up Stakes Draws 10 Turf Distaffers
Arlington Park presents its annual Turf Showcase card on Labor Day Monday, Sept. 6 with eight of the day's nine contests scheduled to be run on Arlington's world famous turf course. Topping the grassy card is the 47th running of the Grade III Pucker Up Stakes with the $100,000 race for 3-year-old fillies drawing a field of 10 to battle over nine furlongs.
Coming in off a second-place finish in the Grade III Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs in her last start July 17, Silverton Hill's Kilmore Quay could emerge as the public's choice in a wide open affair. The daughter of Traditionally finished sixth in the $200,000 American 1000 Guineas in her lone start at Arlington but bobbled at the start in that one-mile turf test. Last out, in the mile and an eighth Virginia Oaks, the Darrin Miller charge set the pace before giving way inside the furlong grounds. Michael Baze, Arlington's leading jockey in his first season here, picks up the mount.
Phillips Racing Partnership's La Cloche rates a strong look after posting back-to-back scores in New York. The daughter of Ghostzapper is making her stakes debut in the Pucker Up after breaking her maiden at Belmont Park in June and capturing a first-level allowance race at Saratoga in her last trip to the post. Junior Alvarado has been named to ride the James Toner-trained filly.
Also invading from New York for the Pucker Up is John & Kim Glenney's Go Ask Alex. A daughter of Afleet Alex, Go Ask Alex finished second in the American 1000 Guineas here in May and last time out finished third in a second-level allowance at Saratoga. Chris Emigh will ride the John Glenney-trained miss.
Dundalk 5's Dundalk Dust is perfect over the Arlington turf course, breaking her maiden over the surface last year and taking a second-level allowance in her last trip over the lawn on July 22. In between, the Illinois-bred daughter of Military beat state-bred rivals in allowance company over the local Polytrack in June and was placed second in the Grade III Arlington Oaks on the main track the following month. Regular rider Eduardo Perez gets a return call aboard the Chris Block pupil.
Others in the field include Steve Maril, Mike Porcaro and Brinker Hill Farm's Silent Candy and Edward Seltzer's Besitos, the one-two finishers in the $60,000 Hatoof Stakes here on Arlington Million Day. Shane Sellers rides the former for trainer Andy Hansen while Eusebio Razo Jr. has the mount aboard the latter for trainer Raja Malek.
Completing the field for the Pucker Up (with riders named) are: Lawrence Peifer's Dade Babe (Florent Geroux), Richard Otto's Mourette (Inez Karlsson), Sisco Racing's Maddie's Odyssey (James Graham) and Hans Poetsch's Cave Creeker (E. T. Baird).