06/02/2011 2:13PM

Emerald Downs: Talented filly Kids Kooler makes 3-year-old debut in sprint feature

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AUBURN, Wash. -- Kids Kooler, one of the leading 2-year-old fillies at Emerald Downs last summer, is scheduled to make her 2011 debut Saturday in the featured eighth race, a first-level optional $25,000 claimer. The 10-race card begins at 2 p.m. Pacific.

Only four horses were entered to face Kids Kooler, and one of those is her Tom Wenzel-trained stablemate, Tasya. Those two figure to attract the lion’s share of the wagering, with For You My Heart, an eight-length winner in her only start, also of great interest to bettors. The purse is $17,600, the distance is six furlongs, and the winner will move a step closer to a possible start in the June 26 Irish Day Handicap, the next race on Emerald’s stakes calendar for 3-year-old fillies.

Kids Kooler already is stakes-placed, having finished second behind Emerald juvenile filly champion Lady Golightly in the one-mile Barbara Shinpoch Stakes last August. Prior to that, she romped by 6 3/4 lengths in a six-furlong maiden race, leaving subsequent stakes winners Class Included and Lady Golightly in her distant wake.

Kids Kooler was bred to be something above the ordinary. A homebred for Jerre Paxton’s Northwest Farms, she’s by First Samurai, a son of Giant’s Causeway, from the Smart Strike mare Bisbee’s Prospect. Paxton campaigned Bisbee’s Prospect at Emerald Downs in 2002-03. In the first start of her 3-year-old campaign, she ran six furlongs in 1:08.20 to win a stakes race by nearly five lengths.

Bisbee’s Prospect was a late-running sprinter. Kids Kooler has more early speed. She has had the lead at the half-mile marker in each of her three starts, though she will face some spirited pace competition Saturday. Tasya, also a Northwest Farms homebred, finished a close second after setting the pace in a first-level allowance on May 14, her first start of 2011. For You My Heart set a pressured pace in her victory in a $15,000 maiden claimer on May 20. Kids Kooler’s top two challengers have similar running styles, and a hot pace is all but guaranteed.

Wenzel named Gallyn Mitchell to ride Kids Kooler. Juan Gutierrez has the mount on Tasya, and Javier Matias will handle For You My Heart for trainer Vann Belvoir.

Others in the field are She’s Only a Dream, who finished more than eight lengths behind Tasya in her last race after winning a $12,500 claiming race in her first start of the meeting, and Sunny Drive, a maiden winner on the grass at Turf Paradise in February.