2018 Distaff Handicap Preview, Entries & Odds

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NYRA Press Release | OTB Writer

Winner of three straight, Corms Racing Stable's Divine Miss Grey will make her first stakes start since a seventh-place finish in Grade 1 Test at Saratoga Race Course last summer, headlining a field of seven in the Grade 3, $150,000 Distaff Handicap at seven furlongs for fillies & mares on Friday at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Claimed for $16,000 in March of last year for trainer Danny Gargan, the 4-year-old daughter of Divine Park has since won six races from 10 starts including a pair of stakes wins and two second-place finishes.

2018 Distaff Handicap Odds & Entries

Race 8 on Aqueduct's Friday card with a Post Time of 5:17 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Anydayismyday 30-1 Christopher DeCarlo Edmund Pringle
2 Highway Star 8-1 Angel Arroyo Rodrigo Ubillo
3 Torrent 12-1 Jose Lezcano Ron Moquett
4 Divine Miss Grey 9-5 Kendrick Carmouche Danny Gargan
5 Berned 15-1 Feargal Lynch H. Motion
6 Picco Uno 12-1 Manuel Franco Jason Servis
7 Holiday Disguise 9-2 Irad Ortiz, Jr. Linda Rice
8 Sounds Delicious 8-5 Junior Alvarado Linda Rice

Divine Miss Grey turned in an impressive effort last tie out, winning the Heavenly Prize on March 10 at Aqueduct by 6 ¾ lengths. She was forced to miss the Grade 2 Barbara Fritche on February 23 at Laurel Park due to a quarantine at Belmont Park, but Gargan said he is confident Divine Miss Grey is ready to compete on the graded stakes level and particularly at Aqueduct, where she has amassed three wins from five starts.

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"Obviously, we would have loved to have made the Barbara Fritchie," said Gargan. "I really think she would have run a great race and competed for top honors, but she's doing great and we've re-grouped and we'll take another stakes shot here. She's training excellent and the best thing about her is that she brings her 'A' effort every time. It's a little quicker back than what we'd normally like, but she's doing well so we'll take a shot."

Divine Miss Grey will leave from post 4 with Kendrick Carmouche aboard.

Trainer Linda Rice, looking to build on a fantastic winner following a second-place finish in the Aqueduct winter trainer standings, will enter a pair of formidable contenders. Holiday Disguise for Lady Selia Stable and Sounds Delicious for Stud El Aguila.

Holiday Disguise a 4-year-old filly by Harlan's Holiday broke her maiden on April 17 at Aqueduct and went on to win four straight races, including the Bouwerie and Biogio's Rose, before finishing second last out to Divine Miss Grey in the Heavenly Prize.

Sounds Delicious by Yes It's True, has an impressive five wins from six starts, including a recent win in the Correction on March 17 at the Big A.

"I think they are a good entry in that Sounds Delicious lays close to the pace and goes to the front-end and Holiday Disguise is a closer," said Rice. ["Holiday Disguise] was a little pace-compromised last time in the Heavenly Prize. I think they are the perfect entry and they both have run well enough to have a chance in this race, so we're planning to go forward with both horses."

Holiday Disguise will depart from post 7 with Irad Ortiz in the irons. Sounds Delicious will be ridden by Junior Alvarado from post 8.

Looking to rebound from a fifth-place finish in the Heavenly Prize is Highway Star for owners Chester and Mary Broman and trainer Rodrigo Ubillo. The 5-year-old homebred multiple graded stakes winner won the 2017 edition of the Distaff and will make her second start of the year following a fith-place finish in the Heavenly Prize. With three wins from six starts at the Big A and two wins from four starts at the distance, Highway Star will depart from post 2 with Angel Arroyo up.

Rounding out the field is Anydayismyday for trainer Edmund Pringle and owner Joseph A. Lowe; Berned for trainer Graham Motion and owners West Point Thoroughbreds; Picco Uno for trainer Jason Servis and Kennesaw Mountain Racing and Torrent for Westrock Stables and trainer Ron Moquett.