10/11/2009 11:00PM

Ashley's Kitty finds good spot


ARCADIA, Calif. - Monday's $65,000 Louis Rowan Stakes at Santa Anita is custom made for Ashley's Kitty.

A sprint over 6 1/2 furlongs, the Rowan is restricted to horses that have not won a stakes worth $60,000 or more to the winner since June 15, outside of statebred company. For Ashley's Kitty, who has struggled in graded stakes, Monday's Rowan can provide a major payday.

"This is the sort of race she can win," said Ted West, who assists his son, trainer Ted H. West.

Owned by Chris Coleman, Ashley's Kitty has won 7 of 18 starts and $337,238. She won the Bangles and Beads Stakes over 6 1/2 furlongs at Fairplex Park on Sept. 13 and returned 13 days later to finish third in the Las Madrinas Handicap over 1 1/16 miles on that track.

"She's a better sprinter than router," Ted West said. "If it hadn't been Fairplex, we wouldn't have tried a mile and a sixteenth. She didn't have the same turn of foot going long as she does going short."

Ashley's Kitty has won 2 of her last 4 starts, including an optional claimer over six furlongs at Del Mar on Aug. 16. She was fourth in the Grade 3 Rancho Bernardo Handicap at Del Mar on Sept. 4, the start of a busy September campaign.

Any concerns about whether Ashley's Kitty has done too much recently were alleviated when she worked a half-mile in 47.80 seconds last Thursday.

"She worked sharp and she's not a particularly good work horse," Ted West said. "I've never seen her that good."

Ashley's Kitty is best when racing from a stalking position, and she has a chance for an ideal trip in the Rowan, which has drawn a field of six.

Trainer Bruce Headley has two runners, both seeking their first stakes win, Supermodel and Free Flying Soul. Empressive Lady, Golden Doc A, and Oilgonewile are the other starters.

Supermodel has won 3 of her last 4, all in maiden and allowance races, and is likely to stalk expected pacesetter Free Flying Soul.

"She's a beautiful filly," Headley said of Supermodel. "She runs to her looks."

Supermodel has never started in a stakes, but the speedy Free Flying Soul was fifth in the Desert Stormer Handicap at Hollywood Park in June. She has made one subsequent start, finishing third behind Supermodel at Del Mar on Aug. 27.