08/11/2011 12:40PM

Arlington: Defending Beverly D. champ Eclair de Lune will be longshot

Four Footed Fotos
Eclaire de Lune is winless since taking the 2010 Beverly D.

Few moments, if any, in Arlington history have been as touching as when Richard Duchossois descended the grandstand steps last year in the delirious moments after his Eclair de Lune captured the Beverly D., the race he named for his late wife. The year that has ensued hasn’t been nearly as kind to Eclair de Lune, as the California-based mare clearly has gone off peak form in finishing no better than fourth in her five races since that unforgettable triumph.

“We’ll take her around the paddock and hope she remembers the success from here,” said Ron McAnally, the Hall of Famer who has his own unique place in Arlington lore as the trainer of the great John Henry in the early 1980s. “Obviously, she favors this course. It was special to do it once, and a second win would be incredible.”

Eclaire de Lune, with Junior Alvarado back to ride, is pegged at 12-1 on the morning line, although it wouldn’t be surprising if her odds drifted higher as one of the longer shots in the race. By comparison, she was the 6-1 fourth choice last year.