Dream of Me, It’s High Time return for second leg of Florida Sire Stakes

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Jen Caldwell

September 3rd, 2015

The Florida Sire Stakes series continues this Saturday at Gulfstream Park and both the Affirmed and Susan’s Girl divisions feature the top four from the first races in the series.

In fact, the Affirmed boasts the top six finishers from the Dr. Fager division, which took place on August 8 at six furlongs. Each of Saturday’s FSS races for juveniles will be run at seven furlongs and the stakes are higher with purses of $300,000.

There are six total stakes scheduled for Saturday, and the Affirmed wraps up the day as the 12TH race with a field of 12. Dream of Me, Mr. Kisses, Brighton Lane, Li’l Meatball, Fellowship and Danbury crossed under the Dr. Fager wire in that order and all return on Saturday for a rematch.

Dream of Me posted a 2 1/4-length upset at 7-1 for trainer Anna Varsi over 35-1 longshot Mr. Kisses, who is trained by J. David Braddy. Behind them were the more highly regarded Brighton Lane, conditioned by perennial FSS trainer Stanley Gold, and Li’l Meatball, another Braddy trainee who was sent off the 9-5 favorite following a nine-length romp in his debut.

Dream of Me went hammer and tongs with Mr. Kisses throughout the Dr. Fager and rallied after being squeezed back when Li’l Meatball came up on the outside. The gutsy gray angled over to the inside and managed to run down Mr. Kisses for the win.

It could have just been a case of passing tiring horses, but Brighton Lane was the only one making up any ground at the end. The Hear No Evil colt ran in last on the backstretch, well back of the dueling front runners, and still looked out of it entering the stretch. Suddenly, he appeared to kick in high gear for a ferocious rally that netted him third.

You can’t deny Dream of Me’s heart, but Brighton Lane has what it takes for the win on Saturday. The bay won his May 29 debut when closer up front, proved he was just as capable closing from the back in the Dr. Fager, and is getting first-time Lasix for the Affirmed. Everything could come together for the Jacks or Better Farm homebred this time around.

Li’l Meatball should relish another shot at his rivals, and gets the addition of blinkers added to his tack.

Dream of Me photo courtesy of Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography

Li'l Meatball  
Brighton Lane  
Night Rythm  

Two races before the Affirmed, 12 juvenile fillies will line up in the Susan’s Girl, including Desert Vixen upsetter It’s High Time.

The dark bay miss was sent off at 10-1 in the race, with Ballet Diva the prohibitive favorite at 1-5 following a pair of dominating wins. One of those came in the Cassidy S., where It’s High Time finished a well-beaten third, eight lengths behind Ballet Diva.

She got her revenge in the Desert Vixen, wresting away the lead from Silent Prayer and drawing off to a 3 1/4-length triumph. Ballet Diva had her chance in the contest, keeping close to It’s High Time’s flank and challenging her around the turn. However, the Gone Astray miss easily turned her back and pulled away under urging.

It’s High Time was definitely the standout in the Desert Vixen, but will be facing a plethora of newcomers in addition to Silent Prayer, Ballet Diva and High End Queen, who finished in that order behind her.

It's High Time photo courtesy of Leslie Martin/Adam Coglianese Photography

Ballet Diva  
High End Queen  
Silent Prayer  

Two of the other four stakes on the day’s card are also part of the Florida Sire Stakes series, but are reserved for three-year-olds instead of juveniles.

The stakes action kicks off in the $150,000 Jewel Princess division sending eight fillies, including one-main track only entrant, a mile on the turf. The companion race, the $150,000 Prized division for colts and geldings, drew 12 to go the same distance.

The $75,000 The Vid S. and $75,000 Wasted Tears S. will send runners 1 1/16 miles on the green.