01/26/2013 3:21PM

Charles Town: Course specialists meet for first time

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Renee Ludwig
Flip the Switch, ridden by Wesley Ho, wins her second race in a row on Jan. 5. She steps up in class for Tuesday night's feature at Charles Town.

Joyous Music and Flip the Switch, both of whom have 4-for-6 records in short sprints at Charles Town, will meet for the first time in Tuesday night’s featured eighth race with a $31,000 purse.

The 4 1/2-furlong race has multiple conditions, including nonwinners of two allowances or stakes within the past five months and nonwinners of four lifetime, but of the eight fillies and mares, all but two – the 7-year-old Pretty Miss Trippi and the 4-year-old Rough Draft – are entered for the optional $40,000 claiming price.

The 5-year-old Joyous Music, based at the Bowie training center in Maryland with trainer Hugh McMahon, has been off since flashing high speed and fading in an optional $50,000 claimer going 5 1/2 furlongs at Laurel Park in November. McMahon sports a 7-for-29 record (24 percent) with horses returning at distances between 4 1/2 and 5 1/2 furlongs following a break of 61 to 180 days.

During a 2012 campaign in which she went 4 for 8, Joyous Music was 2 for 4 at Charles Town, including a 1 3/4-length score in an overnight handicap in her first start in four months.

The 4-year-old Flip the Switch will be stepping up in class following back-to-back wins in a nonwinners-of-three allowance and an optional $25,000 claimer. She has a recency edge over Joyous Music after launching her season by rallying along the rail to score by 2 1/4 lengths on Jan.  5. The last time she began her form cycle with a win, the Joan Reynolds-trained Flip the Switch followed up with a good second sprinting on turf at Colonial Downs last June.

One newcomer who looks intriguing is Dorothy’s Aurora. Racing at three different tracks in her last four starts, the 4-year-old Dorothy’s Aurora has two wins and a close second during that span. She comes off a win for $35,000 in a 5 1/2-furlong race at Laurel on Jan. 4. Her trainer, Tim Kreiser, must be respected, based on his past success shipping to Charles Town. During the past two seasons, Kreiser is 10 for 32 (31 percent) with a $2.30 return on investment with the horses he has brought to Charles Town.

Rough Draft has been sharp against lesser company in her last three outings, beating nonwinners of two lifetime and picking up a pair of seconds.