10/02/2010 9:03PM

Oak Tree: Hibaayeb firmly wins Ribbon


Hibaayeb was sent to California for Saturday's $250,000 Yellow Ribbon Stakes in search of the one thing that was missing in her summertime races in Europe - firm turf.

Back in June, on a good-to-firm course at Royal Ascot, Hibaayeb won the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot. That was followed by a 15th in the Irish Oaks on good-to-soft ground, a seventh in the German Oaks on good ground and a seventh in the Yorkshire Oaks on good ground.

The Grade 1 Yellow Ribbon was the richest win in Hibaayeb's career. She may be after a more lucrative prize in November. The $2 million Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5 is being considered, although it's hard to say what the turf course will be like that day. The weather can be cool in Kentucky at that time of year, and wet conditions may not lead to a drying track as quickly there as they would in California, where the 2008 and 2009 Cups were run.

Yellow Ribbon Runner-up Turning Top will be considered for the Filly and Mare Turf. She was only beaten a length after racing in second throughout the 1 1-4 miles. She thrives at longer distances, and the Filly and Mare Turf distance of 1 3-8 miles is well within her range.