Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 1 Rodeo Drive Stakes in on tap for Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California this Saturday, September 27. Fillies and mares three years old and upward will take to Santa Anita's turf track and go 1 1/4 miles for a shot at the winner's share of the $300,000 purse and an automatic berth into the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.
A full field of 14 will line up in the Rodeo Drive - race 7 on Santa Anita's stacked Saturday card. Post time is 3:30 PM. Let's take a peek into the past performances of all 14 entries for one of five Grade 1 races on Santa Anita's Saturday card.
Miss Serendipity - will make her eighth North American start for trainer Ronald McAnally after 19 starts in Argentina yielded five wins, five seconds and two third place finishes. Her debut here was a troubled fourth as favorite in the minor Paseana Stakes January 12 which she followed with another fourth in her North American graded stakes debut - the Grade 2 Buena Vista here February 17 and an OK third in the Grade 3 Santa Ana Stakes March 16. She had certainly picked up her game in the spring - a win over Emollient in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes at Santa Anita followed a second in the Grade 3 Santa Barbara Handicap in April. But she fell back to earth two back finishing a troubled last of six as favorite in the Grade 2 John C. Mabee Stakes August 10 and bounced back in a big way last time out - a win in the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon Handicap at Del Mar September 1. Miss Serendipity has placed in four of her last five starts with two wins over that span and has won two of her last three starts overall. Brice Blanc gets the call from gate lucky 13 as the tepid 4-1 morning line favorite.
Moulin de Mouglin - has 13 career starts for trainer Richard Mandella with four wins, two seconds and two third place finishes. She is coming off a nice win over Miss Serendipity in the Grade 2 John C. Mabee Stakes at Del Mar August 10 which followed a good third in the Grade 2 Royal Heroine Stakes at Santa Anita June 28, an Allowance Optional Claiming score May 25, a fourth in the minor Santa Lucia Stakes April 20, a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming in April and an Allowance score in February. Moulin de Mouglin has placed in seven of her last eight starts and enters off the biggest win of her life. Mike Smith rides the 5-1 second choice from gate 3.
Parranda - won the Millions Filly and Mare Turf Preview Stakes at Gulfstream in November and the Florida Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Turf January 18 and went on to another win - in the Grade 3 Suwannee River Stakes in gate-to-wire fashion February 8 with a fourth in the Grade 3 My Charmer Handicap in December sandwiched in there. Last time out was a good second behind Miss Serendipity in the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon Stakes September 1 after an OK third in the competitive Grade 1 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes August 2 and yet another win in the Grade 2 Royal Heroine Stakes June 28. Parranda has placed in seven of her last eight starts with four wins over that span and enters in very good form. Elvis Trujillo has the return mount from post 8 at 6-1 odds.
Emollient - Bill Mott trained Emollient has 16 career starts with five wins, three seconds and a third place finish. She had a terrific nine length win in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland at 6-1 odds April 6, 2013, a win in the Grade 1 American Oaks July 13 and a win in the Grade 1 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes also at Keeneland October 6 of last year. But Emollient hasn't been good lately - consecutive ninth place finishes in the Grade 1 Beverly D Stakes at Arlington August 16 and the Grade 1 Diana Stakes July 19 has taken some luster off this filly. She did finish second to Miss Serendipity in May in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes at Santa Anita May 26 and had a third in the Grade 3 Doubledogdare Stakes at Keeneland in April but Emollient is definitely in a slump right now. She will add blinkers for the first time. Rosie Napravnik will try to snap the funk from post 7 at 6-1 on the morning line.
Irish Mission - Canada's top 3-year-old filly in 2012 has come on of late - a win last time out in the Grade 3 Glens Falls Stakes at Saratoga August 31 followed a second in the Grade 3 Matchmaker Stakes at Monmouth Park in July, a second in the minor Belmont Gold Cup and a respectable third in the Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay Stakes May 24. Before that she failed to place in her previous four starts. Irish Million has been trending upwards to say the least ahead of this weekend. She leaves from post 9 at 6-1 odds with Corey Nakatani aboard.
Stormy Lucy - had an ugly eleventh in the 2012 Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf and was forced into a seven month layoff. She returned and finished fifth in the 2013 Royal Heroine and has been up and down since. This year she has had her share of triumphs and disappointments. She comes off consecutive OK fourths - in the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon Handicap September 1 and in the Grade 2 John C. Mabee Stakes here August 10 after a disappointing seventh in the Grade 2 Royal Heroine June 28, a pedestrian fourth in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes here May 26 and a nice two race win streak - the competitive Grade 2 Santa Ana Stakes March 16 and in the Grade 3 Santa Barbara Handicap in April. Stormy Lucy was on top of her game just six months ago and hopes to regain that form with Rafael Bejarano in the saddle from gate 11 at 6-1 on the morning line.
Cozze Up Lady - Kent Desormeaux trained mare is coming off a pair of OK thirds - in the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon Handicap last time out at Del Mar and in the Grade 2 John C. Mabee Stakes August 10. This after a nice win in the restricted Osunitas Stakes at 11-1 odds July 19 and three sketchy results - a seventh in the Grade 3 Chicago Handicap June 28, a fourth in the Grade 3 Winning Colors Stakes in May and a sixth in the Grade 1 Madison Stakes in April. Before that was a nice three race win streak including the minor Mardi Gras Stakes and the 2013 Grade 3 Chicago Handicap. Cozze Up Lady has 18 career starts with seven wins, two seconds and four third place finishes and hopes to keep the upward trend going after struggling earlier this year. Keith Desormeaux will be in charge at 10-1 on the morning line from gate 1.
Rusty Slipper - H. Graham Motion trained filly mare her 2014 debut June 24 and finished fourth in the Grade 3 Eatontown Stakes but bounced back most recently with a nice win in the Grade 3 Violet Stakes at Monmouth Park August 23. Prior to her year away, she was seen winning the minor Little Silver Stakes last May after a DNF in the Grade 3 Appalachian Stakes at Keeneland in April. Rusty Slipper is certainly trending upward and will leave from post 6 with Aaron Gryder in the saddle at 15-1 odds.
Queen of The Sand - Irish bred Peter Gallagher trained filly has six wins, a second and three third place finishes in 18 career starts but has found her groove since shipping - two straight wins heading into this weekend. Last time out was an Allowance score at Del Mar August 14 after and Allowance Optional Claiming in June. She makes a huge step up in competition this week and will have Alex Solis in the reins of the 15-1 shot from the outside post.
Famous Alice - will hit the track for the seventh time for trainer Tom Proctor having recorded two wins and three second place finishes. Last time out was a disappointing fifth in the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks after a good second in her graded stakes debut - the Grade 3 Senorita Stakes at Santa Anita June 28, a fourth in the minor Penn Oaks Stakes in May and an Allowance Optional Claiming score in April. She will be looking for a bounce back with Drayden Van Dyke aboard the 20-1 shot from post 2.
Scarlet Strike - Jerry Hollendorfer trainee won the 2013 Grade 3 Providencia Stakes on this track but has been inconsistent since. After her biggest win Scarlet Strike posted consecutive seconds in graded stakes action but slumped after that - a sixth in the Grade 1 American Oaks last July started a string of five straight off the board finishes. She has been a tad better lately - runner up finishes in her last two starts - both minor stakes races. Scarlet Strike has her work cut out for her when she leaves from gate 5 with Joe Talamo in the irons at 20-1 on the morning line.
Bee Brave - British bred filly makes her stakes debut Saturday off an Allowance score at Del Mar August 24 and a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming August 3. She has three wins, a second and a third place finish in eight career starts and figures to have a tough time in her huge step up in competition. Tyler Baze gets the call from post 4 at 30-1 odds.
Charlie Em - British bred Patrick Gallagher trained filly was good at home and carried that to North America with a good win in her debut here - the Grade 1 Senorita Stakes in May, 2013. She has been up and down since - 12 starts have produced just one win (in the minor Possibly Perfect Handicap at Santa Anita June 26) and four third place finishes including the Grade 3 Autumn Miss Stakes in October. She now has 21 career starts with five wins, a second and five third place finishes and enters in so-so form despite a fourth last time out in the minor CTT and Thoroughbred Owners of California Handicap August 22. Martin Garcia rides at 30-1 from post 10.
Bunairgead - Irish bred filly had two wins, three seconds an two third place finishes in 13 starts at home before debuting in North America with a disappointing eighth in the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon Handicap at Del Mar September 1. She wasn't great at home and was not great last time out - not a whole lot is expected. Victor Espinoza gets the mount at 30-1 on the morning line from post 12.