06/25/2008 11:00PM

Calder trip in works for Dancing Allstar


VANCOUVER, British Columbia - With nothing left to prove after easily winning her sixth straight stakes race in Western Canada in the fillies division of the CTHS Sales Stakes at Hastings last Saturday, Dancing Allstar could make the long trip to Calder to run in the $250,000 Azalea Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on July 12.

The Grade 3 Azalea is one of four graded sprint stakes races that make up Calder's Summit of Speed, which has become one of the premier events on the North American racing calendar. It's hard to fathom a longer trip, though. The distance between Vancouver, B.C., and Miami, Fla., is roughly 3,431 miles by car. The climates are also dramatically different. Miami is in the tropics and Vancouver sits in the middle of a rain forest where the summers seem to last just a couple of weeks. According to her trainer, Terry Jordan, Dancing Allstar won't mind the journey.

"She has such a great attitude, and nothing ever seems to bother her," said Jordan. "We're going to split the trip up anyway. She will fly to Woodbine early next week, and if we can work out proper arrangements, we'll ship her to Calder from there. We're still working on setting up the second part of the trip."

With Mario Gutierrez aboard, Dancing Allstar toyed with her rivals in the $55,000 CTHS Sales Stakes, and she really hasn't been under any pressure in any of her three wins this year. Voted the champion 2-year-old filly in Canada last year, Dancing Allstar cruised to a 5 1/2-length win in the Mount Royal Handicap at Stampede Park on May 4, and then never looked back while romping in the Emerald Downs at Hastings on May 17.

Dancing Allstar is clearly in a different league than the horses she has been running against in Western Canada, and it will be interesting to see how she holds up when she faces serious horses in the Azalea. Dancing Allstar certainly proved her class with a win in the My Dear Stakes at Woodbine last year, and she also came within a nose of beating colts and geldings in the Colin Stakes, also at Woodbine.

Her record of 8 wins from 10 starts for earnings of $403,416 speaks for itself. A nose loss to Bear Holiday in the $125,000 Colin and a half-length defeat to Officer Cherie in the Ontario Debutante are all that separates her from being undefeated.

In a similar situation, Monashee proved that she wasn't just a local hotshot when she beat graded stakes winners in the Paseana Handicap at Santa Anita last January.

Trained by Tracy McCarthy, Monashee won 11 stakes races in a row racing exclusively in British Columbia and Alberta. Before her win in the Paseana, she had a rough trip while going unplaced in the Maple Leaf Stakes at Woodbine last November.

"I don't think people realize how good the horses running at Hastings really are," said McCarthy. "It's never easy going somewhere else, but Dancing Allstar is a very nice filly, and she proved that by winning a stakes race at Woodbine last year. Good for them for giving her a shot. I wish them all the luck in the world."

Jordan, who also trains 2006-2007 Sovereign Award winner True Metropolitan, is confident Dancing Allstar will be able to keep up with what figures to be a very tough field in the Azalea.

"Along with True Metropolitan, she's the nicest horse I've ever trained," he said. "She has tremendous natural ability, and my job has been to just try and keep her happy."

Jordan credits Dancing Allstar's owner, Bob Cheema, for picking her out of the 2006 Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society-B.C. Division yearling and mixed sale. Cheema paid a bargain $15,500 for Dancing Allstar.

"I had nothing to do with it," said Jordan. "Bob won't admit it, but he has a good eye for a horse and he certainly spotted one here."

Jordan said that Gutierrez, who has been the dominating jockey at the current Hastings meet, would likely ride Dancing Allstar in the Azalea. Gutierrez leads the jockey standings here with 45 wins from 141 starts. Frank Fuentes is second with 23 wins.

True Metropolitan on for Longacres Mile

According to Jordan, True Metropolitan will likely run in the $300,000 Longacres Mile on Aug. 17. True Metropolitan is scheduled to make his next start in the $200,000 Dominion Day at Woodbine July 1.

"If he comes out of the Dominion Day in good shape, we're looking at bringing him back for the Mile," said Jordan.

A 6-year-old Florida-bred, True Metropolitan is coming off of a win in the Grade 3, 1 1/16-mile Eclipse Handicap at Woodbine on June 7, and he easily won the six-furlong George Royal at Hastings in his only other start this year. A mile just might be a perfect distance for him.

"He keeps getting better and better," said Jordan.

True Metropolitan went over the $1 million mark in earnings with his win in the Eclipse. His career totals are 35 starts, 18 wins, 5 seconds and 4 thirds for total earnings of $1,038,295.

True Metropolitan is also owned by Cheema.

Jordan and Gutierrez also teamed up to win the colts and geldings division of the CTHS Sales stakes with Star Prospector ($3.30) on Sunday.

According to Jordan, Star Prospector, who is owned by Peter Redekop, will make his next start in the $50,000 Chris Loseth Stakes at Hastings on July 6.