Fittest loser
Article updated: 7/8/2011 10:00 PM

Another big show at Arlington: Million Preview Day

Photo courtesy of FourFootedFotos ¨ Itís not Million Day, but itís the next best thing when Arlington Park hosts Million Preview Day on Saturday

Photo courtesy of FourFootedFotos ¨ It's not Million Day, but it's the next best thing when Arlington Park hosts Million Preview Day on Saturday

 
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By Special to the Daily Herald

Exactly one week after more than 35,000 fans showed up for Arlington's Park's highly popular annual fireworks show, the track has another lights-out show slated for today.

But this one will be at land level -- specifically Arlington's famed turf course.

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It's not Million Day, but it's the next best thing when Arlington Park hosts Million Preview Day.

The day features three graded stakes sprinkled throughout the 11-race card -- the Grade III $150,000 Arlington Handicap, Grade II $200,000 American Derby and Grade III $150,000 Modesty Handicap.

Arlington Handicap

Juniper Pass, a winner of back-to-back Grade II events in California, and Interaction, a multiple Group I winner in his native Argentina, heads a field of 10 older horses.

Juniper Pass comes to Chicago off consecutive victories in the Grade II San Luis Rey and the Grade II San Juan Capistrano Handicap at Santa Anita.

Interaction is making his first start since a seventh-place finish on March 3 in the Group II Emirates Airline Dubai City of Gold Stakes.

Dean's Kitten enters off a victory in the $150,000 Dallas Turf Cup at Lone Star Park on May 30.

Tajaaweed was third in this race one year ago. He was second in the $77,000 Opening Verse at Churchill Downs three weeks ago.

American Derby

Willcox Inn, winner of the $100,000 Arlington Classic, the first leg of the Mid-America Triple on May 28, returns for the second leg.

He is owned by a partnership that includes trainer Michael Stidham, Hilary Pridham, Mariette Farrell, John Adger, Jack Hodge and the Three Kings group (St. Viator High School graduates Al and Ron Lepinsky and Marty Nixon).

Willcox Inn stalked the pace in Arlington Classic before sweeping to the lead approaching the furlong marker and drawing off to a 2 Ĺ-length tally.

Derby Kitten, the son of 2004 Secretariat Stakes winner Kitten's Joy, comes into the American Derby off a third-place finish in the $200,000 Lone Star Derby in Texas.

Lil Bit O'Fun is a four-time winner on grass including the $200,000 Oliver Stakes at Indiana Downs last out on June 15.

Cannon Hill is a son of Holy Roman Emperor and trained by Ireland's top conditioner Dermot Weld.

Close Alley was runner-up in the Grade II American Turf and the Lone Star Derby in his last two starts. Suntracer, a Chris Block-trained son of Kitten's Joy, ran second in the Arlington Classic last time out after previously winning a pair of turf allowance races.

Modesty Handicap

Wasted Tears will attempt to stretch her speed out to a mile and three-sixteenths as the 122-pound starting highweight. She has captured the last three editions of the Grade III Ouija Board at Lone Star Park.

Fantasia was second in the Grade I Just a Game Stakes at Belmont Park June 11.

The Chris Block-trained Askbut I Won'ttell is winless in three starts this year but captured Grade III Cardinal Handicap at Churchill Downs and the Grade III My Charmer Handicap at Calder Race Course last year.

Endless Expanse, trained by Christophe Clement, is looking for her second stateside victory after winning her North American debut at Gulfstream Park in February.

My Baby Baby comes into the Modesty off a come-from-behind tally in the Grade III Mint Julep Handicap at Churchill Downs June 11.

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