10/05/2011 1:46PM

Breeders' Cup: Stars to Shine preps in Spinster, eyes Ladies' Classic

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Michael Burns
Stars to Shine will try to earn a spot in the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic with a strong performance in Sunday's Spinster Stakes at Keeneland.

The long and winding road for Stars to Shine has taken her from Kentucky to England, to Canada, and now back to Kentucky, where on Sunday her future will be determined by how she performs in the Grade 1 Spinster Stakes at Keeneland.

With the exception of one race at Churchill Downs last fall, Stars to Shine has made all her starts at Woodbine, on either turf or Polytrack. She again will run on Polytrack in the Spinster. But since she is by Tale of the Cat, a start in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic remains a possibility, according to Ed Vaughn, who owns 25 percent of the filly and was her initial trainer.

“I would be interested to give her a go on the dirt at some stage,” Vaughn said Wednesday morning at Keeneland. “She’s bred for it, she’s got big old feet on her as well, and her style of running, to set a strong pace, is good for dirt. We’ll cross that bridge when we have to.”

First things first, and that’s the Spinster, the last major prep for the Nov. 4 Ladies’ Classic. Aruna, Pachattack, Protesting, Quiet Giant, and Tesoro de Amor are among those expected for the Spinster.

Vaughn, 38, is a trainer based out of Newmarket, England. He was part of an ownership group that purchased Stars to Shine as a weanling at Keeneland for $45,000. But she never raced for him.

“The prize money was too good in Canada,” Vaughn said, so he sent Stars to Shine to trainer Mark Frostad. “They were running maiden races for $67,000, and we’re running for two and a half quid.”

Vaughn trains 16 horses, one of whom, Dance And Dance, is here for Saturday’s Shadwell Mile.

Vaughn has been on his own for six years. He worked an assistant to Alec Stewart, who died of cancer in August 2004, and before that worked with steeplechasers.

“My family, on both sides going back four generations, bred and raced jumpers,” he said. “No chance. I couldn’t escape it.”