Laurel weekend

February 19, 2000|By Bob Pickering

Today: Defending champion Passeggiata is among 14 fillies and mares entered for the 47th running of the Barbara Fritchie Handicap. At 116 pounds, the Argentina-bred mare is also the high weight.

Trainer Ferris Allen took a similar path to victory in last year's 7-furlong Fritchie.

Before Passeggiata's nose victory in the $250,000 Grade II event, Allen sent the daughter of Samoan out to capture the Francis Scott Key Stakes.

Passeggiata won this year's Key and is likely to be among the choices for the Fritchie.

Speeding Star, another highly regarded import from Argentina, is also in the lineup. Trained by John Kimmel, Speeding Star won her first appearance in the United States, an allowance test at Gulfstream Park.

Others due consideration are Her She Kisses, a consistent filly trained by P.G. Johnson, and Di's Time, a New York-based mare who recently upset Aqueduct's Correction Handicap.

Tomorrow: When 18 fillies and mares passed the entry box for the Singing Beauty Stakes, Laurel officials split the $50,000-added event into two divisions.

The 7-furlong affairs, for 4-year-olds and up, are carded as the seventh and ninth races.

In the first division, Turfway Park shipper Shes Got the Look is the favorite. The filly was the beaten choice in the Wishing Well Stakes after winning three consecutive starts under allowance conditions.

Rhoda Elaine and Copelan's Piano, the place and show finishers in the Toes Knows Stakes, could share favoritism in the second division.

Also due action in the betting is Spunoutacontrol, a lightly raced daughter of Wild Again who broke her maiden locally before winning at Aqueduct.

Monday: The General George Handicap, a Grade II event worth $200,000 at 7 furlongs, has lured nine sprinters.

Badge, the long-shot show finisher in last year's Preakness, and Affirmed Success, who closed the year by winning the Grade I Cigar Mile Handicap at Aqueduct, will command respect at the windows.

Familiar local runners include Iron Punch, a recent allowance victor, and Nawmon, who captured back-to-back added-money events as the favorite.

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