06/07/2012 9:03AM

Golden Gate: Stoney Fleece tries to pull off stakes double in Silky Sullivan

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Shigeki Kikkawa
Stoney Fleece won the Alcatraz against open company in May and now faces statebreds in the Silky Sullivan.

ALBANY, Calif. – Last month, Stoney Fleece came up from Southern California to win the open-company Alcatraz Stakes for 3-year-olds at Golden Gate Fields. He comes back up on Saturday for what should be a softer spot when he faces California-bred 3-year-olds in the $100,000 Silky Sullivan.

The Silky Sullivan is at one mile on turf, while the Alcatraz was at 1 1/16 miles on turf.

Stoney Fleece got his nose just in front of Chips All In to win the Alcatraz, depriving that Kentucky-bred of his fourth stakes win. The Alcatraz was the first victory of 2012 for Stoney Fleece, who won the Grade 3 Generous on the turf as a 2-year-old.

Trainer John Sadler said after winning the Alcratraz that he would be sending Stoney Fleece back for the Silky Sullivan, and he reiterated that it’s the right race for the Decarchy colt, who earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 89 for the Alcatraz victory.

“This is the right spot,” said Sadler. “He’s run over the course and got a good number up there.”

Stoney Fleece sold for $1,200 in the Barretts January sale last year. When he ran for $40,000 in his winning debut, Sadler convinced Gary and Cecil Barber to buy him.

“I knew his mother,” said Sadler, who trained the dam, Gold Fleece, winner of the Grade 3 Buena Vista Handicap and runner-up in the Grade 1 Gamely. Stoney Fleece has become her top foal, with five wins, $291,860 in earnings, and three stakes victories.

None of his six rivals Saturday can match his credentials or even those of Chips All In.

A Toast to You has won three of his four starts, with his only loss coming in the Echo Eddie Stakes on the Santa Anita main track on March 3. He has won two straight turf races since, a $50,000 claiming sprint and a first-level California-bred allowance route, both at Hollywood.

La Mano Nera, an Eric Kruljac-trained stablemate of last weekend’s Campanile winner, Best Present Ever, just won a first-level turf allowance and will be making his first start around two turns.

Exotic Slew defeated Stoney Fleece when he finished second in the California Breeders’ Championship – a sprint on the Santa Anita main track in December – and scored his lone victory in a turf sprint.

Summer Hit, a gelded son of Bertrando, makes his first turf and route start. He has three wins, a second in the Grey Memo against older, and a third in five starts. The Bertrando breeding hints that he’ll love the distance and should handle the turf.

Pepnic ran fourth in the Alcratraz when coming off a maiden victory. Jonny’s Choice comes north for his stakes debut after winning a maiden race in his last start.