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No need to ‘Wonder ‘ about Thornbird winner


The Thornbird Stakes, one of the major preparation races for the upcoming Classics, is set for competition on Wednesday, April 7 at Caymanas Park. The native-bred three-year-old Graded Stakes event for fillies only, sees 10 runners contesting against each other over a distance of seven furlongs (1,400m), vying for a total purse of $2 million.

Below is the analysis of each runner.

1. SENSATIONAL ENDING: (3 ch f by Sensational SlamPleasant Ending) – Opened her account in a maiden special weight confined to fillies over five furlongs (1000m) round March 21. Sensational Ending won by 1 ¼ lengths in a time of 1:02.2 for the distance which suggests that this filly needs to improve to be competitive here. The way she broke her maiden suggests that Sensational Ending is will be more effective going longer. Might be good for a board placing.

2. MAGENTA: (3 ch f by Here Comes Ben Winning Spirit) – Did not have a good trip when finishing fifth behind Action Ann in the recent Hot Line Stakes at ix furlongs (1,200m). Magenta was slowly into stride and made steady headway in deep stretch to finish some eight lengths behind the winner. With the journey increased and with Shane Ellis in the saddle, Magenta is expected to run a better race.

3. THREE TIMES LUCKY: (3 ch f by Northern GiantGranville Greeta) – Ran surprisingly well to finish fourth in the Hot Line Stakes on March 13. Three Times Lucky, even with a likeness for the longer trip of the Hot Line, cannot get a winning vote. Note the check pieces are on.

4. AMY THE BUTCHER: (3 gr f by Deputy Glitters Asia’s Dream) – The chances of this filly winning are limited.

5. ACTION ANN: (3 gr f by Sensational Slam Lady Like) – Talented filly who won the Hot Line Stakes over six furlongs on March 13. Action Ann came with a strong run towards the end of the race to nip Secret Identity by a neck in a time of 1:14.3. The final time wasn’t that impressive, but the manner of victory suggests that she should enjoy this journey as Action Ann was a 13-length winner over this distance when releasing the maiden tag. Action Ann is in a state of rapid improvement and when this race is being decided, she will be there.

6. SURE CURLIN: (3 b f by Perfect Curlin Sure To Cure) – Ran a blinder to finish third in the Hot Line Stakes. Sure Curlin was on the front end for most of the way before being passed by Action Ann and Secret Identity in deep stretch. With the distance increased, Sure Curlin is expected to fold in the last furlong but that was a warm-up run for a new trainer. Sure Curlin is being well prepped, so don’t be surprised if she runs way beyond expected.

7. SHE’S A WONDER: (3 b f by Bern Identity Jamaican Dream) – After finishing second behind top two-year-old Further and Beyond in the Jamaica Two-Year-Old Stakes (one mile) last December, made a relatively quick return to the racetrack on February 6. She’s A Wonder won her seasonal debut over five furlongs (1,000m) round by 3 ¾ lengths, beating American-bred Lure of Lucy in a quick 59.3. She’s A Wonder is known for speed, but was held off the early pace and then took over approaching the distance and carried her gallop through to the line. That effort indicated of a talented improving filly, who is the one they all have to beat. Plus, She’s A Wonder has been painstakingly prepared for this race with an obvious eye on the bigger prize close to the horizon.

8. HOIST THE MAST: (3 ch f by Blue Pepsi Lodge Opulent) – Failed as the favourite on her seasonal entry when finishing in fifth behind Laban on March 20 at six furlongs. With seven furlongs being the distance of the Hot Line, one would expect Hoist The Mast to again falter in the latter part of this race but then again that effeort was a pipe opener from which she must have benefited. Hoist The Mast could set off in front and prove difficult to get back, but there is other speed in the Thornbird and if she should fight for the lead then her chances of winning will be lessened. Throw away that first run, as Hoist The Mast should be stripped fitter and a much better run is expected with Dane Nelson in the saddle.

9. FIGHTING COWGIRL: (3 ch f by Market RallyCatfight Cowgirl) – Will not impact the outcome of this race.

10. KATALINA: (3 ch f by Ride On Curlin Alienate) – Won over 7 ½ furlongs in a time of 1:35.3 on February 13. Katalina was then expected to be competitive in the Hot Line Stake but finished in sixth place. Although she has some talent, based on that last run, Katalina is going to be left behind once again.

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