Teen Pauline looks to continue resurgence on turf in Riskaverse
By Mackenzie Kirker-Head | 08/29/2013 01:01 PM ET
After a scintillating performance last year in her debut at Saratoga Race Course, Teen Pauline was the talk of the town. She set a track record of 56.53 seconds for five furlongs while drawing off to win by 4 ½ lengths, earning a 92 Beyer Speed Figure. A Stonestreet Stable homebred, Teen Pauline was one of three flashy debutantes for the barn that included Kauai Katie and Dreaming of Julia.
In her next start, Teen Pauline was the odds-on favorite in the Grade 1 Spinaway and was beaten 4 ½ lengths to wind up third. Off for nine months and transferred to Todd Pletcher, she finished fourth in two more starts on dirt, but on August 11, she regained her winning ways with a one-length allowance victory on the Spa's inner turf.
On Friday, the dark bay daughter of Tapit makes her second grass start and first in a stake as she faces eight other 3-year-old fillies in the $100,000 Riskaverse at a mile on the inner turf.
"She is training really well, she came out of her last race great; I think she showed us in her breezes and that race that she really likes the turf so we are excited about getting her in a stake," said Pletcher of Teen Pauline, the 9-2 third choice on the morning line.
Favored at 3-1 on the morning line from the barn of Steve Asmussen is multiple stakes winner Sister Ginger, who enters off a three-race win streak, including the Indiana Grand Stakes on July 20 at Indiana Downs. Asmussen also will saddle Promise Me More (8-1), fourth to Unlimited Budget in the Grade 2 Fair Grounds Oaks on March 30 last time out.
Christophe Clement sends out the 7-2 second choice, Bella Castani, a Big Brown filly who most recently finished second in the seven-furlong Diamondrella overnight stakes on July 7 at Belmont Park. Purchased by Lael Stables after a maiden win at Gulfstream, Bella Castani next won the Tweedside overnight stakes at Belmont at a mile before finishing seventh in the Little Silver on May 27 at Monmouth Park.
Coming in off of a fourth-place effort in the Grade 2 Lake George behind winner Kitten's Dumplings is Darley Stable's speedy Midnight Watch, 5-1 on the morning line.
"She trains very well always, a little too aggressively," said trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. "You can see her form, she goes fast out of the gate. It's Saratoga, these overnight stakes sometimes are not too far off of graded stakes. She just went so fast, those were better fillies in there [the Lake George], but the distance should help her."
Also in the field is Unbelievable Dream (8-1), who won the Grade 3 Appalachian at the Riskaverse distance on April 18 at Keeneland Race Course, but who is winless in three subsequent starts.
"She is training very well, and I was very disappointed in her last couple of races," said trainer Barclay Tagg. "She needs some pace up front."
Rounding out the field are Miss Lamour, Native Bombshell, and Coarsegold. Elusive Fate was entered and will run only if the race comes off the turf.
The field for the $100,000 Riskaverse: