10/13/2010 3:44PM

Distance dictates Harlan's Ruby run in Juvenile Fillies

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Trainer Ken McPeek wants to keep Harlan’s Ruby at 1 1/16 miles, so the filly who won her maiden on turf but ran second in last weekend’s Alcibiades on Polytrack at Keeneland will head to the Grade 1, $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies rather than the Juvenile Fillies Turf.

“She needs the mile and a sixteenth,” McPeek said of the distance of the Juvenile Fillies.

McPeek noted the BC Juvenile Fillies Turf on the same Nov. 5 card at Churchill Downs will be run at a mile, which is less than optimum for Harlan’s Ruby. She won her maiden at 1 1/16 miles at Saratoga in August, one start before closing for second in the Alcibiades that was won wire-to-wire by the now-sidelined Wickedly Perfect.

“I really prep in grass races because that’s all that’s available,” McPeek said of the turf start for Harlan’s Ruby. “There’s no two-turn dirt races available.

“Her pedigree, she’s by Harlan’s Holiday and out of a Saint Ballado mare, it says dirt.”

Harlan’s Holiday won both the Florida Derby and Blue Grass in 2002, for McPeek. Harlan’s Ruby has raced on conventional dirt once, finishing fourth in a maiden special weight at Churchill in July. But the race was at six furlongs, and one start later McPeek moved her to turf so she could race around two turns. He said her final BC work would be at Churchill. “Her next work will be at Keeneland, then after the Keeneland work we’ll bring her to Churchill and get a nice cruising workout,” said McPeek.
Julien Leparoux has the mount for Shawnee Racing Stable.