Double the ‘Silver,’ double the fun

Profile Picture: Jen Caldwell

Jen Caldwell

July 24th, 2015

Monmouth Park’s $60,000 Little Silver S. on Sunday drew so many entrants that the track split the 1 1/16-mile turf contest into two divisions of 10 sophomore fillies each, including some main-track only contestants.

The first division features Gypsy Judy, the Robin Graham trainee who was just caught in the Penn Oaks two back, while the second division two races later has Pine Needles as the top draw.

Both fillies are exiting the Belmont Oaks Invitational (G1), with Gypsy Judy obviously outclassed in that 10-furlong affair after running in last nearly all the way. It was only her second try on the turf, following the Penn Oaks, and the stakes-winning miss could find the Little Silver much more to her liking under Xavier Perez.

Also in her division is a pair of last-out 10-length winners in off-the-turf allowances at Delaware Park. Rachel Wall has yet to race on turf after her debut was moved to the main track, while Kawfee Fa Marfa has three prior turf tries interposed between main track efforts.

Gypsy Judy photo courtesy of Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

Pine Needles, on the other hand, has competed on nothing but turf in her five-race career. The Christophe Clement trainee took her initial two outings, just missed by a neck in the Memories of Silver S. and finished a half-length third in the Wonder Again S.

The chestnut filly was up front in the Belmont Oaks Invitational last out, even leading at one point, but faded to ninth on the wire. The cutback in both distance and class in the Little Silver is probably all she needs to pick up a first stakes victory.

Catcha Rising Star captured her last pair by a combined 14 lengths when those grass races were switched to the main track, and has the powerhouse duo of trainer Graham Motion and jockey Trevor McCarthy in her corner. If the dark bay lass takes to the turf, she’ll be tough.

Lismore, third in the Florida Oaks (G3) over the spring, and Grade 2-placed Isabella Sings could offer a nice challenge if they can rebound from recent dismal form, while Jaded Glory will also probably enjoy the class relief here.

Pine Needles (outside) photo courtesy of NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography