05/26/2012 11:20AM

Arlington: Ready to Unleash finally gets chance to run on Monday


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – One might think, considering she hasn’t raced since Jan. 22, that the filly Ready to Unleash is coming into Monday’s featured third race at Arlington Park after an injury layoff. Not so, reports trainer David Carroll. The problem has not been getting Ready to Unleash ready to race again; the problem has been finding a race in which to run her.

“I could not get a race to fill anywhere,” Carroll said. “There was no race for her at Fair Grounds. I entered three times at Keeneland. A race at Indiana Downs didn’t fill. An earlier race at Arlington didn’t fill, either. At Churchill, she was the only one in the entry box for a race several times. This filly has been waiting, waiting, and waiting to run.”

Ready to Unleash, a 3-year-old facing older foes for the first time, is one of eight horses in a second-level allowance race also open to $40,000 claimers and carded for six furlongs on Polytrack. Ready to Unleash’s lone previous synthetic-surface start produced a so-so second-place finish last year at Keeneland, and though the longer seven-furlong distance of that race was farther than Ready to Unleash prefers to race, Carroll said, it’s likely that Ready to Unleash shows her best form on grass.

“She’s better on turf, but at this stage, I’m just happy to have her in,” said Carroll.

Still, Monday’s feature could set up favorably for Ready to Unleash, who has been posting steady dirt drills at Churchill. In her most recent start, she knocked off favored Cat Lore in a sharp turf-sprint performance in New Orleans, but Monday, Cat Lore’s trainer, Mike Stidham, might be able to get the best of Ready to Unleash.

Stidham has two horses for the allowance race, including Distorsionada, the likely favorite. Making her synthetic-surface debut in April at Keeneland, Distortionada set a hot pace and held gamely to win a first-level sprint allowance by a neck. And while there are other pace horses in Monday’s third race, Distorionada has been a willing closer, and a switch back to those tactics might earn her a second straight win.

Vindiced Gypsy also merits consideration. She hasn’t raced since November but has worked sharply and steadily for this comeback race, and scored back-to-back Polytrack victories about one year ago at Arlington.