05/02/2005 11:00PM

Classy Flower steps up off a win


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Classy Flower, victorious for a $35,000 claiming tag in her first appearance at the Woodbine meeting, attempts to double up against $50,000 opposition going six furlongs on Thursday.

After finishing second here for $12,500 on the final day of the 2004 meeting, Classy Flower spent the winter at Tampa Bay Downs with trainer John Simms. She proceeded to record three consecutive runner-up placings there, including in a $25,000 optional claimer going 1 1/16 miles March 26.

Classy Flower broke through for her fourth lifetime score here April 24, when she upset the favored Fair Grounds invader Stonington over a sloppy track. She received a lifetime best 81 Beyer Figure.

Todd Kabel retains the mount on Classy Flower, who is owned by Double Bar Stable.

Believe in Missy, Friendly Theresa, Dana's Lucky Lady, and Ruckus in Court are among the other contenders in the eight-horse field of fillies and mares.

Believe in Missy was one of the most improved runners at Woodbine last year. After dropping a $20,000 contest in September, she reeled off three straight tallies against $20,000, $25,000, and entry-level allowance company. Believe in Missy got hung out wide in a speed duel over an inside-biased track in her final 2004 outing, weakening to fifth in a tough $62,500 optional claimer.

Apprentice Corey Fraser will ride Believe in Missy for Sid Attard, who led the trainer standings here in 2004. They teamed up to take Sunday's last race with longshot Search the Church.

Friendly Theresa finished second here for $50,000 after shipping up from Florida in October. She struggled against $62,500 optional claiming rivals in her two subsequent starts here last year, and finished fifth, beaten only two lengths, at that level while coming off the sidelines on the second day of this meeting.

Dana's Lucky Lady, third in the 2004 Star Shoot Stakes, was claimed for $25,000 from a win in her penultimate start in November. She is coming back from a six-month absence, and has run well when fresh.

Ruckus in Court finished first or second in 9 of 13 outings last year, including a decisive victory over $40,000 3-year-olds. She hasn't been postward since running sixth after a bad break in a key $62,500 optional event Nov. 20, which yielded next-out winners La Salle Glory and Greattobeloved, along with future Aqueduct allowance performer Think Fast.