11/29/2007 12:00AM

Carroll expects big 2008 for three fillies

EmailETOBICOKE, Ontario - Josie Carroll was busy marshalling the troops here at Woodbine the other morning, making plans for her people and horses who will be spending the winter south of the border.

"We've got 12 stalls at Palm Meadows, and 20 stalls at Fair Grounds," said Carroll. "We already have five horses at Fair Grounds, and the rest will leave Dec. 7. The Palm Meadows horses will leave Dec. 10."

Lorie Allen, Carroll's assistant here, will handle the Palm Meadows division, while Linda Gibson, who was based at Fort Erie this year, is managing the Fair Grounds contingent.

"I'll be splitting my time between the two places," said Carroll.

Carroll is particularly excited over next year's prospects for Alvena, Authenicat, and Victory Romance, a trio of Canadian-bred fillies who all won stakes this year at 2.

Alvena won 2 of her 3 starts, including the Shady Well, a 5o1/2-furlong race for Ontario-foaled fillies here July 15. That turned out to be her last start.

"She sustained a saucer fracture," said Carroll. "She's starting back at the end of this month."

Authenicat, owned by Vinery Stable and Fog City Stable, won 3 of 6 starts, including the Victorian Queen, a six-furlong race for Ontario-sired fillies here Oct. 3.

Sent to Churchill Downs for her next start on Oct. 28, Authenicat finished second in the Grade 3 Pocahontas at one mile and had been scheduled to make one more stakes appearance this month.

"We decided she'd done enough for this year, so we sent her down to Vinery," said Carroll. "She'll be coming into the Fair Grounds later."

Alvena and Authenicat will be at Palm Meadows in Florida, while Victory Romance, an Alberta-bred, will be wintering on the farm in Ocala, Fla.

"She'll get about six weeks off, then start back," said Carroll.

Victory Romance traveled to Northlands Park to win the 6 1/2-furlong Filly Sale Stakes on Aug. 18.

Back at Woodbine, Victory Romance recorded consecutive second-place finishes in the Grade 3 Mazarine at 1 1/16 miles, the Princess Elizabeth for Canadian-bred fillies at 1 1/16 miles, and the open Glorious Song at seven furlongs.

Carroll's Fair Grounds runners will include Good and Lucky, Sant Elena, Call the Posse, and Big Love Bill, all of whom turned in noteworthy performances this year.

Good and Lucky, a Florida-bred 4-year-old gelding, won twice from three starts at Fair Grounds last winter and became a stakes winner there in the 1 1/16-mile Woodchopper, which was taken off the turf and run on a sloppy main track.

"He's just starting back," said Carroll, noting that Good and Lucky sustained an injury while prepping for the Eclipse here this past spring. "He's down there now."

Sant Elena, an English-bred 4-year-old filly, was sent to Carroll after racing in her homeland last year.

Sant Elena's five starts this season include a win under second-level allowance conditions over one mile of turf and a second-place finish in the Flaming Page.

Call the Posse, an Ontario-bred 2-year-old filly, showed little in her first two outings but then came to life to win her maiden over six furlongs here Nov. 18.

Big Love Bill, a Kentucky-bred 2-year-old colt, finished a solid second when he debuted for a $62,500 claiming tag here last Sunday.

Lady's First Cat seems stuck in third gear

Lady's First Cat will carry a remarkable but dubious record of consistency into Saturday's $125,000 Kingarvie, a 1 1/16-mile race for Ontario-sired 2-year-olds.

A homebred colt who races for owners John and Jessica Pastorek and is trained by Tino Attard, Lady's First Cat has started five times and brought home third money on each occasion.

Lady's First Cat made his first three starts in maiden races and then faced Ontario-sired stakes opposition in the six-furlong Bull Page and seven-furlong Frost King. His Beyer Speed Figure for both stakes was 72.

"He's good right now, and I think he'll like to go two turns," said Attard. "We'll give him a shot."

Emma-Jayne Wilson will ride Lady's First Cat for the first time.

Successful homecoming for Sutherland

Chantal Sutherland was the riding star here Wednesday night, winning with Upton Park ($10.30), Ballen Isle ($7.90), and Selina's Mask ($9.60) on the nine-race program.

The triple was the second of the season for Sutherland, who left Woodbine at the end of the 2004 meeting but returned this past spring after campaigning in New York and Florida.

"I love it here; I'm so happy I came back," said Sutherland, 31, who was Canada's Sovereign Award-winning apprentice in 2001 and 2002. "It's been really good. I built some really good relationships. I went in with an attitude just to be happy and see what happens."

Heading into Thursday's program, Sutherland had ridden 64 winners at the meet and ranked eighth in that category.

And Sutherland, who is represented by agent John Bell, is hoping to build on that total before the meeting winds up on Dec. 9.

"John's lined up some pretty good horses, some horses that have been knocking at the door," said Sutherland.

Although she has not won a stakes race this year, she will have opportunities this weekend with Bold Suspect in Saturday's Kingarvie and Short Shorts in Sunday's Ontario Lassie. Both Bold Suspect and Short Shorts are trained by Catherine Day Phillips.

On Dec. 11, Sutherland will be heading for California to prepare for the Santa Anita meeting, which begins Dec. 26.

"I'll take a couple of days off first, then I'll start working in the morning," said Sutherland, whose agent at Santa Anita will be Tommy Balls.

Sutherland plans to take a brief time out for a trip to Florida, where she will visit Day Phillips at her farm and ride in the Ocala Breeders' Sales championship races on Feb. 11.

She then will go back to Santa Anita and return to Woodbine a week or two before the 2008 meeting begins on April 5.