05/09/2012 2:29PM

Churchill Downs: Groupie Doll will be getting a rest


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – On a Kentucky Derby weekend of impressive performances, few horses were better than Groupie Doll, the 4-year-old filly who ran off to a 7 1/4-length, record-setting romp in the Grade 1 Humana Distaff on the Saturday undercard at Churchill Downs.

“It was so nice to win on Derby Day, especially the way she did it,” trainer Buff Bradley said Wednesday.

Groupie Doll has been turned out briefly at the Bradleys’ family farm near Frankfort, Ky., alongside Brass Hat, the retired 11-year-old gelding who for years was the torchbearer of the stable until Groupie Doll came along in such timely fashion.

Groupie Doll, said Bradley, “is getting just a little break. We’re going to work backward from the Breeders’ Cup” Filly and Mare Sprint in November at Santa Anita. “One option is the Ballerina and then maybe another race, but we really haven’t decided anything yet.”

Groupie Doll now has won back-to-back Grade 1 events after capturing the Vinery Madison last month at Keeneland and clearly has a leg up on the competition for the Eclipse Award in her division. Prominent from the start, she won the seven-furlong Humana Distaff in a track-record 1:20.44 under Rajiv Maragh and earned an eye-popping 112 Beyer Speed Figure.

Among other local trainers, Dale Romans also had a huge Derby weekend, winning the American Turf with Silver Max on Friday, then the Churchill Downs with Shackleford and the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic with Little Mike on Saturday. Romans also had Dullahan as a late-flying third in the Derby.

Other notable wins for trainers with local strings included Juanita for Mike Maker in the La Troienne, Stephanie’s Kitten for Wayne Catalano in the Edgewood, and Great Attack for Wesley Ward in the Twin Spires Turf Sprint.