04/08/2009 11:00PM

Alice K White set for forward move

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Alice K White bounced back from a six-month layoff to win a division of the La Primera Del Ano Derby trials for 3-year-old Quarter Horse fillies at Los Alamitos on March 21. There is little concern from trainer Cody Joiner that she will bounce from that performance when she starts favored in Saturday's $236,100 final over 400 yards.

"I think the race will do the opposite," Joiner said. "She needed that race. She came out of the race fantastic, physically and mentally. She's prepared."

Owned by MJ Farms, Alice K White had not started since September after undergoing surgery to have a bone chip removed from a knee. She resumed training with Cody's father, Mike, at Sunland Park during the winter and arrived at Cody's Los Alamitos barn in late February.

In the trials, she won by a length over Asyouwish, the first time that Alice K White had tried 400 yards. By top stallion First Down Dash, Alice K White ran 300 or 350 yards last year. She has won 3 of 5 starts.

Cody Joiner, 29, said the filly impressed him in the time trials by behaving in the starting gate. In the past, she has thrown her head in the gate.

"I was pleased she didn't do that," he said. "She stood perfectly. The thing that I was most pleased with was that when she was asked to run, she exploded away from there."

The La Primera Del Ano Derby is the second major stakes of Alice K White's career. She was fourth in the Governor's Cup Futurity last July.

Joiner is in his first year of training on his own after having assisted his father. Alice K White ran in Mike Joiner's name last year, and Cody's name in the La Primera trials. She will run in Mike Joiner's name for Saturday's race.

"This is his mare," Cody said.

The La Primera Del Ano Derby is the third major stakes final in the last four months for Sugar Mama, who won a division of the time trials. Trained by Danny Montes, Sugar Mama was fourth in the Los Alamitos Two Million Futurity in December and seventh in the Los Alamitos Winter Derby in February.

Sugar Mama broke poorly in both races, but had no such trouble in the La Primera time trials, winning by a length over Moonlight Corona in 19.57 seconds.