07/19/2006 11:00PM

Great Lakes: Trio from Bennett


Deb's Favoite Gift, second in the Larkspur Handicap to stablemate Bucky's Prayer, is the likely favorite for the $50,000 Moonbeam Handicap at Great Lakes Downs.

The Moonbeam, which drew a full field of 10 Michigan-bred fillies and mares, will be contested at one mile as the seventh race on a card that starts at 6:30 p.m. Eastern. Skydivers from the nearby Muskegon Air Fair will perform.

With the absence of Bucky's Prayer, who was second in the J J'sdream Stakes at Arlington Park last Sunday, Deb's Favoite Gift is the powerhouse of a Gerald Bennett-trained trio. She is coupled with Musical Factor because both are owned by Thomas Vanderhyde. Gold Ginny, who was third in the Bennett sweep of the Larkspur Handicap, will run for owner Elizabeth Weber as a separate entry.

A past champion at Great Lakes, the 5-year-old Deb's Favoite Gift is the 119-pound highweight and will be ridden by leading rider Terry Houghton. She sports a 6-7-2 record from 20 starts locally.

Gold Ginny, the second choice on the morning line at 7-2, made a late bid to be third in the Larkspur after a five-month layoff. Freddie Mata, just back at the track after sustaining a broken leg in February, will be in the irons.