05/09/2012 11:27AM

Churchill Downs: Brushed by a Star cuts back to sprint for 2012 debut


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Grant Forster owns a house on Central Avenue right across from Churchill Downs, which makes things easy when he and his many friends decide to take the party home from the track. Friday kicks off the popular twilight concert series in the Churchill paddock, and after Forster runs a filly named Brushed by a Star in the featured 10th of 11 races, he might well be in the mood to kick back and do a little celebrating into the night.

“We’ve got a keg in the backyard left over from Derby week,” laughed Forster, who will have about 15 horses under his care this spring and summer at the nearby Trackside training center. “We’ll see if we can’t get that taken care of by Friday.”

Brushed by a Star, owned by a Team Forster syndicate that includes members from Seattle, Boston, Del Mar, and Mississippi, was assigned post 1 in a field of seven fillies and mares in the Friday evening feature, a $58,000, second-level allowance at 6 1/2 furlongs. Although Brushed by a Star has done her best in two-turn races, Forster said he is optimistic the filly will give an excellent account of herself.

“We gave her the winter off by design,” said Forster, who turns 38 next week, grew up in British Columbia, and is a graduate of the University of Arizona racetrack management program. “She’s a big, long filly, and we thought she’d come back and make a really good 4-year-old. She’s trained very well over the last couple of months, really sharp, and I really like that angle of a route horse backing up to a sprint when they’re fresh like she is. I’m looking forward to a big race from her.”

Corey Lanerie has the call on Brushed by a Star, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Eddington who ended last season with two good races at Churchill – a seven-length triumph in an off-the-turf, first-level allowance and a decent sixth-place finish behind Arena Elvira in the Grade 2 Falls City Handicap.

Among her chief rivals in the Friday feature are Henny’s Hurricane (post 4, Manny Cruz), a hard-trying filly with 2 wins and 2 seconds from 5 lifetime starts at Churchill; and Marvel Gaye (post 6, Calvin Borel), another comebacking 4-year-old who showed promise at 3.

Rounding out the lineup are Sam’s Bliss, Garnet Crystals, Goodnessgraciousme, and Street Storm.

One other allowance (race 3) is on the Friday card: a $55,300, first-level turf route in which Godard, Beamer, and On Stirling Bridge look best in a field of six 3-year-olds and up.

Twilight first post for this and every Friday through the end of the meet is 2:45 p.m. Eastern, with the featured 10th going at 7:24 and the 11th at 7:54. Concerts of approximately 90 minutes follow shortly afterward in the paddock, with the first one being given by Eric Lindell.