Millie Vessels Draws 10 Distaffers
Quirky heads quality field.
September 24, 2015
Ed Allred’s Quirky will start from post 10 when she goes after her second graded stakes win of the year in Sunday’s $100,000 Mildred Vessels Memorial Handicap (G1) at Los Alamitos.The winner of this 400-yard race will become the sixth horse with a berth in this year’s $600,000 Champion of Champions.
The winner of last year’s Southern California Derby (G1), Quirky is perfect in three outings this season. She began the year by winning the Grade 2 Charger Bar Handicap for mares, and then she posted impressive wins in the Ivan Ashment Handicap and California Breeders Matron Stakes. She’ll be looking for her fifth victory in a row on Sunday night.
“She’s good right now,” trainer James Glenn Jr. said. “She’s training great, carrying good weight, and has a real good appetite. She used to live up to her name in that she had a lot of little quirks, but now she’s more mature.”
Is this the best Quirky has ever been?
“I think so,” Glenn added. “When a mare wins a race or two they sometimes get in a zone. She’s at that spot right now. There’s so much at stake and so much riding on each of her races that I will get excited even though I try to play it cool.”
A winner in six of 13 starts and $272,098 in career earnings, the 4-year-old daughter of Stel Corona will be ridden by Carlos Huerta. Her biggest threats figure to be defending Mildred Vessels winner Significant Heart and multiple stakes winner The Streakin Clean.
Owned by Abigail Kawananakoa, Signficant Heart is the reigning AQHA champion aged mare. In addition to her victory in the Mildred Vessels, Significant Heart also won the Las Damas Handicap and the Miss Princess Handicap last year.Significant Heart will be looking to become the first mare to repeat in the Mildred Vessels since Allred’s Flare For Toby in 2000-2001. The only other ones to win consecutive runnings of the Mildred Vessels are the D. Wayne Lukas-trained She’s Precious (1975-76), Sound Dash (1994-95), and Dashing Folly (1996-97). Cesar De Alba will ride the 5-year-old mare by Corona Cartel for trainer Paul Jones.
Leonardo and Javier Olmos’ The Streakin Clean has been sharp all season long. The mare has hit the board in all five of her starts, including wins in the Miss Princess and Independence Day handicaps. Jaime Gomez, who has enjoyed a sensational training campaign, will look for another big moment when he saddles The Streakin Clean.
The field to the Mildred Vessels will be completed by Golden State Derby (G2) runner-up Jess Cuz, Solid Connection, Chalalita, Mrs. Pickens, Shake Djibouti, Blabber, and Bring Me Home.
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