The Princess Rooney handicap will probably fly under the radar for most, but it’s important race as it grants entry in to the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint as part of the Challenge Series. The “win and you’re in” sentiment of the prep race circuit for the world championships is a great concept and the sprint category often gets overlooked by horse players. That’s leaving money on the table.
Birdatthewire is the horse to bakc at the Princess Rooney despite a 5th place finish at the Humana Distaff back in early May. The four-year old filly out of Summer Bird and My Limit has had a rough 2016 campaign and is still searching for her first victory since winning the La Brea the day after Christmas last year. She will be the highest rated horse in the field. During this particular season, Birdatthewire has also finished 4th at the Madison, 5th at the Santa Maria and was runner-up at the La Canada.
The next best bet afterwards is Cali Star, who placed 5th at the Heavenly Prize Invitational and 2nd at the Houston Ladies Classic in 2016. She also won the Rampart last year and has the speed to match Birdatthewire. The Martin Wolfson trainee is as desperate to get back in to the winner’s circle and is still waiting for her real breakout race.
Concealedwithakiss is the only contender entering the Princess Rooney with a win in her last outing, but that was at an allowance. The four-year old filly trained by Edward Plesa Jr. is not a big player in the game and hasn’t competed in many stakes races for good reason.
Brad Cox’s Spelling Again is also a decent consideration after a 3rd place finish at the Winning Colors. She finished in the same spot at the Ruffian Handicap and also came 7th at the Madison all in 2016. The five-year old mare has been a decent challenger and could threaten the ranks at the Princess Rooney while offering a strong reward as a place bet to horse players.
Be Mind Phil, Willow Hills, My Miss Venezuela and Kiss To Remember round out the Princess Rooney Handicap field.
The 7-furlong sprint will take place at Gulfstream park at 6:02pm EST.