FRENCH-BRED NEIGE BLANCHE STRICTLY THE HORSE TO BEAT IN SUNDAY’S $100,000 POSSIBLY PERFECT STAKES
ARCADIA, Calif. (June 16, 2022)–Trainer Leonard Powell’s consistent French-bred Neige Blanche seeks her third stakes win of Santa Anita’s Winter/Spring Meet as she heads a field of eight fillies and mares three and up in Sunday’s $100,000 Possibly Perfect Stakes at a mile and one quarter on turf.
One of three stakes on an 11-race closing day program, the Possibly Perfect is named for the Bobby Frankel-trained filly that won six Grade I stakes and banked more than $1.3 million.
Better than ever at age five, Neige Blanche unleashed an impressive turn of foot in taking the Grade III Santa Barbara Stakes going a mile and one half on turf May 14, a race in which she earned a career-best 92 Beyer Speed Figure.
A solid third two starts back in the Grade III Santa Anta Stakes at a mile and one quarter on turf, she took the Grade III Astra at 1 ½ miles by one length at odds of 1-5 on Jan. 17.
With five stakes wins, four of them graded all in combination with regular rider Juan Hernandez, Neige Blanche has perhaps been the most consistent turf mare on the circuit dating back to her victory in last year’s Santa Barbara on May 21, 2021.
Owned by Madaket Stables, LLC, Laura DeSeroux, Marsha Naify and Mathilde Powell, Neige Blanche is 18-8-0-4 overall with earnings of $480,280.
Powell will also be represented by another French-bred, 4-year-old Keyflower, who comes off a disappointing sixth place finish as the 5-2 favorite in the Grade III Wilshire Stakes at one mile on turf May 1. A winner of two of her nine starts in France, she stalked the early pace en route to a three quarter length win in her U.S. debut–a one mile turf allowance three starts back here on Feb. 19.
Far back early in her next start, the Grade III Santa Ana Stakes at 1 ¼ miles on turf March 26, she did well to finish fifth, beaten 2 ¼ lengths. Owned by Team Valor International and Gary Barber, Keyflower will be ridden for the first time by Umberto Rispoli.
With an overall mark of 12-3-2-2, she has earnings of $130,021.
Although she was claimed for $25,000 five starts back on Nov. 14, veteran trainer Bill Spawr’s Freedom Lass has run well in four turf starts at the meet, winning her last two. A one mile starter allowance winner on March 19, she was most recently an impressive 2 ½ length first condition allowance winner at 1 1/8 miles on April 30 and rates a legitimate chance to stretch out a furlong with Tyler Baze back aboard.
A 5-year-old Illinois-bred mare by Revolutionary out of the Lost Soldier mare Katie the Lady, Freedom Lass, is owned by Spawr, Thomas Acker, Edward Brown, Corey Smith and Thomas Sanford. With an overall mark of 19-4-3-5, she approaches her first stakes assignment since a second place finish in Hawthorne’s Showtime Debutante at age two Nov.1, 2019 with earnings of $148,060.
Fresh off a pair of sharp turf routes at Golden Gate Fields, trainer Manny Badilla’s Natural Colour, a 4-year-old English-bred filly owned by former Santa Anita President Ron Charles and Samuel Gordon, gets the services of Tiago Pereira in what will be her third stateside start.
Forwardly placed in her U.S. debut, a one mile turf allowance on April 24, Natural Colour rallied nicely to win by three quarters of a length at 9-5. Subsequently second, beaten a half length in a second condition allowance at 1 1/16 miles May 28, she earned a 76 Beyer, up from 70 in her previous start.
With an overall mark of 11-3-2-1, Natural Colour has one third place finish from three tries at 1 ¼ mile on grass.
THE $100,000 POSSIBLY PERFECT WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDER
Race 5 of 11 Approximate post time 3 p.m. PT
Scherzo–Kyle Frey–122 Agreetodisagree–Ricardo Gonzalez–122 Freedom Lass–Tyler Baze–122 Natural Colour–Tiago Pereira–124 Neige Blanche–Juan Hernandez–126 Scarabea–Julien Leparoux–122 Keyflower–Umberto Rispoli–126
First post time for an 11-race card on closing day, Sunday is at 1 p.m.