10/20/2010 2:46PM

Harmonious stays in Kentucky for Filly and Mare Turf


Harmonious, winner of two Grade 1 races for 3-year-olds fillies on turf in California and Kentucky this year, is considered a probable starter for the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5, trainer John Shirreffs said Wednesday.

Harmonious won the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at Keeneland last Saturday by 4 1/4 lengths, stalking the pace and pulling clear.

Harmonious was scheduled to be flown from Kentucky to California on Thursday, but Shirreffs canceled those plans and is keeping Harmonious in Kentucky to further evaluate her condition in coming days. Owned by Marty, Pam, and Emily Wygod, Harmonious has won 4 of 6 starts and $502,420.

A start in the Filly and Mare Turf over 1 3/8 miles would be her first stakes against older fillies and mares. Shirreffs said Harmonious’s mental state will play a role in determining whether she starts in the Breeders’ Cup.

“It’s about her mental condition more than anything else,” Shirreffs said. “As long as she doesn’t get excited going to the track, she’s in good shape.

“I think any distance is good for her. She can definitely go a mile and three-eighths.”

Harmonious would be part of a field led by defending champion Midday, who is trained in England by Henry Cecil. Midday, 4, recently resumed serious training after being given a break after her third consecutive Group 1 win in the Prix Vermeille in Paris on Sept. 12, Cecil said on his website earlier this week.