Arlington hosts final graded stakes this weekend
A full field of 12 fillies, topped by Volcat and Angegreen, will line up for Saturday's Grade III $175,000 Pucker Up Stakes at a 1 mile on the turf, the final graded stakes race of the Arlington Park season.
The Pucker Up is part of a stakes tripleheader that includes a pair of $65,000-added races for state-breds -- the Lady Lionel Handicap for fillies on the turf, and the Tex's Zing Handicap for the boys, also on the lawn.
Volcat carries a two-race win streak into the Pucker Up, including a score in the Grade III Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs in her last start July 21. Since the daughter of After Market was shifted to the turf, she has not finished worse than third in three starts over the surface. The Ken McPeek trainee will be ridden Saturday by Robby Albarado.
Angegreen, an Italian-bred daughter of Ekraar, makes her first start in this country after being purchased by her current connections earlier this year and sent to trainer Graham Motion. The chestnut filly was quite accomplished in her native country winning three of five starts while finishing second in her final start overseas -- the Group II Italian Oaks in May. Mike Smith will be in the saddle.
Another filly likely to make an impact in the Pucker Up is the Roger Attfield-trained Miss Cato. The British-bred Notnowcato filly has only made two starts in the U.S. since being imported from England, finishing fourth in the Grade I American Oaks at Hollywood Park and second, beaten a neck, in an allowance race at Del Mar last month. Arlington Park's leading rider, Francisco Torres, picks up the mount.
Treasured Up, third in the Grade III Regret at Churchill Downs, has been facing stakes company since beating an allowance field at Keeneland in April. Tim Thornton rides the Al Stall Jr.-trained daughter of Medaglia d'Oro.
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