02/13/2013 4:57PM

Gulfstream Park: Trio of class acts face off against Starship Truffles


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - A trio of lightly raced but talented 4-year-old fillies coming off extended layoffs – Small Kitchen, Funny Proposition, and Aubby K – will take on the red-hot Starship Truffles in Friday’s co-featured fourth race, to be decided under mid-level optional claiming conditions.

Small Kitchen opened her career with two easy wins at Fair Grounds, but was badly beaten in her two subsequent starts, the Grade 3 Fair Ground Oaks and Grade 3 Eight Belles last May at Churchill Downs.

“She came out of the Eight Belles not quite right, so we gave her plenty of time off,” trainer Mike Maker said. “She’s training dynamite down here, and I see no reason why she can’t return to the form she showed to open her career. I don’t like breaking from the 1 hole, but there’s nothing I can do about that.”

Funny Proposition has not started since finishing a distant fifth behind Questing in the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga on July 21.

“We’ve always thought a lot of her, but she’s just had some issues on and off,” trainer Mark Casse said. “She got hurt after her last start, but she’s trained really well for her return and we feel she’s probably better going a little further. This is just a starting point.”

Starship Truffles is riding a four-race win streak and figures to be the solid choice in the 6 1/2-furlong dash.