12/31/2012 1:31PM

Delta Downs: She Loves Runnin' preps for possible Premier Night appearance

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Trainer Tony Richey recently signed on to be a private trainer for Royce Roberts, and one of the better horses the men have together will be in action Wednesday night at Delta Downs. She Loves Runnin’ is the one to beat in a first-level allowance for 3-year-old fillies bred in Louisiana. The 6 1/2-furlong race, which is to be run around two turns, is expected to produce starters for next month’s $125,000 Starlet on the Louisiana Premier Night program at Delta.

She Loves Runnin’ is a candidate for that race, Richey said. She is one of about 25 horses Richey has in training for Roberts, an Alaska and Texas resident who has maintained a racing stable for more than 35 years. Richey has trained for Roberts for about 28 years, but on Nov. 1 entered into an agreement to train solely for him. Richey is based at Roberts’s Oakleaf Training Center in Tyler, Texas, and the plan is to ship to race at tracks in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas, and this coming spring, Kentucky.

“We’re going to focus on trying to come up with a special horse,” Richey said. “We’ll buy some open horses, try to come up with that big one.”

She Loves Runnin’ has established herself as one of the better Louisiana-bred fillies in training, with placings in all three of her stakes starts. Her latest came on the Louisiana Champions Day card at Fair Grounds on Dec. 8, when she ran second, beaten eight lengths by Sittin At the Bar, in the $100,000 Lassie.

“She ran as hard as she could,” Richey said. “She just ran up against a bear of a filly. She ran her race, was a pretty easy second.

“This filly, she dances every dance. I think she’s been on four different surfaces, four different racetracks, and run on every one of them. That’s pretty good for a” young horse.

She Loves Runnin’ will be moving back to two turns for the allowance. In her first route start, she was second in the $150,000 Jewel at a mile at Delta on Nov. 17.

“She handled the two turns at Delta the first time fine,” Richey said. “Going six and a half furlongs, I think its right up her alley.”

She Loves Runnin’ will break from post 7 in a field of seven under Diego Saenz.

“She’s got a lot of speed,” Richey said. “I look for her to be right off the pace. She can be the pace if you need her to be. I look for her to be right off the pace.”

Also on the card is a first-level allowance for Louisiana-bred fillies and mares at 6 1/2 furlongs that drew the Joe Offolter-trained comebacker F C Halo Elite.