02/25/2010 12:00AM

Don't Forget Gil tops Wayward Lass


Don't Forget Gil, the romping winner of the Grade 3 Florida Oaks last season, makes her 4-year-old debut Saturday in the Wayward Lass Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs.

The Wayward Lass has a field of nine older fillies and mares and is run at 1 1/16 miles.

While the Oaks was her only win in nine starts last season, Don't Forget Gil raced with some of the best 3-year-old fillies on the East Coast. A New York-bred trained by Mark Hennig, she finished a fast-closing second in the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks going 1 1/4 miles at Belmont last summer and was second behind Dream Play in the Grade 2 Comely over a sloppy track a Aqueduct.

Earlier in the season, Don't Forget Gil encountered bad luck in the Suncoast, a mile and 40-yard prep for the Oaks. She broke through the gate before the start and then had a terrible trip before finishing a fast-closing third.

Don't Forget Gil will probably go off as the Wayward Lass favorite and will be ridden by leading rider Daniel Centeno at 116 pounds.

Trainer Eric Reed said he feels his entrant, Satans Quick Chick, is moving to a better distance Saturday after finishing second to Lady Alexander in the seven-furlong Manatee.

"We were pleased with her effort last time out; the only thing we weren't happy with was the result," Reed said. "We didn't get the best of trips through the turn in the Manatee, but she finished strong and has come out of the race ready for more, so that's the main thing."

Although Satans Quick Chick won the Grade 2 Raven Run over seven furlongs at Keeneland in October, Reed said she is a two-turn horse.

"She set a track record going two turns at Presque Isle and is definitely most comfortable in the middle-distance range," Reed said.

Lady Alexander is back in Saturday's field, and Reed said he is hoping there will be some competition for the early lead to help set up Satans Quick Chick's late run.

Lady Alexander used her speed to win the Manatee. The last time she tried two turns she captured the Honey Bee at the Meadowlands at 1 1/16 miles over a good racing strip.