06/17/2011 12:20PM

Canterbury: Tourmaline in sharp form for Northbound Pride Oaks


SHAKOPEE, Minn. – The Northbound Pride Oaks on Sunday Canterbury Park matches the well-traveled Tourmaline and the Kentucky shipper Artemus Kitten, while the Brooks Fields Stakes on the same Father’s Day card is headed by Heza Wild Guy, who is still going strong at 10. The one-mile Northbound Pride Oaks for 3-year old fillies and the 7 1/2-furlong Brooks Fields for 3-year olds and up both are worth $35,000 and will be run on turf.

Tourmaline, the 9-5 morning-line favorite, comes into the Northbound Pride Oaks off a 4 1/2-length allowance score on dirt at Prairie Meadows. Before that, she finished second in an optional claimer on the Tampa Bay Downs grass, and she also has run at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans and at Remington Park in Oklahoma. Trained by Bernell Rhone, Tourmaline should be stalking the early pace under leading rider Dean Butler.

Michael Maker ships Artemus Kitten up from Kentucky, where she ran fifth last month in a Churchill Downs allowance that was taken off the grass and run on the main track. In her two other starts, both this spring, she led to the stretch before finishing second in an off-the-turf allowance at Keeneland, and won a $35,000 maiden claimer on the turf during the tough Gulfstream Park meet.

Cherokee Queen shapes up to be the early speed in the Northbound Pride Oaks after a front-running maiden victory at Canterbury on May 29. She will be trying two turns for the first time.

Trainer Michael Biehler has two in the race: Carousing, who is stepping up in class after a $25,000 claiming win, and the Minnesota-bred Lady Beryl. Carousing last raced on grass when she scored in a maiden special weight at Remington Park.

Rounding out the field are Paris by Night and Congrats and Roses.

Heza Wild Guy, a three time stakes winner in 2010 with more than $600,000 in earnings, is the morning-line favorite in the Brooks Fields. He faces Green Secret, who comes in from Turf Paradise and holds two wins in three starts over the Canterbury turf.

City Train has never finished worse than third in his six starts on the turf – all with New York-bred maiden or allowance company last year – including wins at Saratoga and Aqueduct. He comes off a third in a $25,000 optional claiming race on the dirt at Prairie Meadows May 30 in his first start in four months.

The Brooks Fields also includes Sommelier Smarty, who has won 2 of 4 this year; Hype, who won the race last year; Nomorewineforeddie, who won the Minnesota Sprint Championship last year and is making his 2011 debut; and the speedster Texas Country Doll.