Siena Farm President/owner David Pope shared a recent conversation he had with Ignacio Patino, who serves as general manager/owner of the Kentucky-based stable.
They were discussing the 2014 journey of Angela Renee, their 3-year-old thoroughbred who is scheduled to race Saturday afternoon in the Grade III $175,000 Rachel Alexandra Stakes at the Fair Grounds.
After winning the Grade I $300,000 Chandelier Stakes at Santa Anita in September, Angela Renee posted disappointing finishes in her next two starts. That’s when Patino reminded Pope that Angela Renee was bred to be a breakout as a 3-year-old, not at 2.
“Everything accomplished last year is gravy, a bonus,” Pope said, recalling the conversation.
It’s the reason Sienna Farm is optimistic about its entry into the Rachel Alexandra, where she will break from Post 6 with Rafael Bejarano. She’s trained by Todd Pletcher.
“We’re looking forward to Saturday,” Pope said.” By no means am I confident we’ll win, but we’re confident in our horse. I’m going to be watching from Lexington with my fingers crossed. Hopefully, we’ll get a good trip and see what we have ahead of us this spring. Hopefully, it will be a big run.”
Competition in the field will include I’m a Chatterbox, one of three entries for trainer Larry Jones.
I’m a Chatterbox, owned by Fletcher and Carolyn Gray, is coming off a gate-to-wire win at the $125,000 Silverbulletday Stakes. Paired with Florent Geroux, they will break from the far outside post 10.
Jones is also handling Brereton C. Jones’ improving charge Lovely Maria, ridden by Kerwin Clark from Post 5, and Calumet Farm’s White Clover. Jose Riquelme will start from post two.
Majestic Harbor returns
Majestic Harbor won his first start at the Fair Grounds. Perhaps its fitting the 7-year-old returns, hoping to add another victory, this time in Saturday’s Grade III $125,000 Mineshaft Handicap at Fair Grounds. Owned by Gallant Stable, Majestic Harbor will make his third stakes start here.
The previous occurred during a ninth-place finish in the 2011 Grade II Louisiana Derby and sixth in the 2013 Grade II New Orleans Handicap.
Eight-year-old Nates Mineshaft, the 2012 winner of the race, looks to repeat from Post 7, ridden by Miguel Mena.
Far from a favorite like International Star, Larry Jones-trained Bluff, an entry in the Grade II $400,000 Risen Star Stakes, won his last race with ease, besting the Jan. 22 field by 5¾ lengths. Kerwin Clark will ride from Post 3.