Candy Kitty Seeks Third Straight Stakes Win in Sunday’s Herecomesthebride
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL– A field of nine 3-year-old fillies will head down the aisle in the $150,000 Herecomesthebride Stakes (G3), Sunday's featured event at Gulfstream Park. Meet-leading trainer Todd Pletcher is set to saddle Candy Kitty and Seeking Her Glory, both winners over this course, in the nine-furlong test on the turf.
Starlight Racing's Candy Kitty is the more accomplished of Pletcher's pair, winning the Wait a While Stakes over a sloppy track on Nov. 30 and most recently weaving her way through traffic to prevail in the Ginger Brew Stakes on the Gulfstream grass on Jan. 5.
“She ran well here both when the race came off the turf and on the turf, so she's pretty versatile,” Pletcher commented. “She seems to be doing well.”
Jockey Edgar Prado, who rode the daughter of Lemon Drop Kid in each of her last two wins, will be aboard when she breaks from the No. 2 post position. As a stakes winner already, Candy Kitty will be the 120-pound highweight and will concede four pounds to the other fillies.
Seeking Her Glory, a Virginia-bred filly campaigned by owner Lawrence Goichman, shed her bridesmaid status with a front-running tally on Feb. 9 over the Gulfstream course and distance. The Giant's Causeway filly was second behind Hardly at Aqueduct on Nov. 17 and to Party Now on Jan. 2 prior to her graduation.
“I thought her maiden win was very good,” Pletcher commented. “She seems to be steadily improving with each start. She is making a big jump from a maiden to a stakes, but her numbers suggest that she fits, and the mile and an eighth seemed to suit her last time. Seeing that this is (the same distance) is why we decided to step her up in here."
Meet-leading jockey Javier Castellano will once again ride Seeking Her Glory, who drew the No. 4 post.
Pletcher entered Fierce Boots, a stakes winner at Aqueduct, as main-track only for the Herecomesthebride. Hardly, owned by Lee Lewis and trained by Mark Hennig, is coming off a troubled fourth-place effort in the Sweetest Chant Stakes on Jan. 26. The daughter of Hard Spun will be ridden by jockey Jose Lezcano when she breaks from the No. 8 post.
Room Service, third in the Sweetest Chant, drew the outside post in the nine-horse field. Trained by Wayne Catalano on behalf of owner-breeders Gary and Mary West, the More Than Ready filly will have the services of jockey Joel Rosario for the first time.
High Wire Kitten broke her maiden on the Gulfstream grass on Dec. 22 and added an allowance victory eight days later at Turfway Park for owner-breeders Ken and Sarah Ramsey. Trainer Wesley Ward freshened up the daughter of Kitten's Joy afterwards, and she recorded four notable workouts at Palm Meadows during February. She will be ridden by Dylan Davis and break from the No. 5 post.
Also in the field are America (John Velazquez), Valseuse (Julien Leparoux), Merry Merry Bee (Luis Saez) and Raging Atlantic (Paco Lopez). Fierce Boots was entered as main-track only.