04/21/2011 11:44AM

Hastings: Brighouse Belles hard to figure


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – It is tough to pick the winner of the $50,000 Brighouse Belles at Hastings Saturday. The 6 1/2-furlong sprint for fillies and mares drew 10 horses, and all are making their first start of the year.

It is hard to find a more honest horse than Wind Storm, and it wouldn’t be surprising if she ended up being a slight favorite.

A 7-year-old mare, Wind Storm has won a third of her 26 career starts and discounting her debut, she has never finished worse than third in any sprint.

She had never won at a middle distance until she won the 1 1/8-miles B.C. Cup Distaff last year. Proving it was no fluke, she came right back to win a 1 1/16-mile allowance race. Nonetheless, what she really wants to do is sprint and the likely other contenders in the field probably want more distance.

Trainer Dave Forster is pleased with how Wind Storm is coming up to the race.

“I think anybody would like her, wouldn’t they?” said Forster. “She shows up every single time and I think she’ll run another good race on Saturday.”

According to trainer Troy Taylor, Summer Song is training well but he is looking at the race as a place to “just to get her going.” Last year Summer Song was voted the champion older filly or mare in B.C.

Summer Song will need a lively pace which should be provided by Classic Alley Kat. Along with Summer Song and Cry Cry Cry, classic Alley Kat is owned at least partially by Glen Todd and Patrick Kinsella.

Classic Alley Kat, who will break from the rail, is trained by Elizabeth Stolzenberg. Taylor thinks she could be the one to beat.

“She’s fast, and if she gets a clear lead I don’t think anyone will catch her,” he said.

Kimmyv has been based at Hastings with trainer Dino Condilenios since June, 2010, but she will be making her first start in Vancouver. She was purchased privately by Swift Thoroughbreds Inc. after she won a first-level allowance race at Churchill Downs last May. Since then she has made two starts at Emerald Downs: a fourth place finish in the one-mile Boeing Handicap, and an upset win over Summer Song in the $75,000 Washington Distaff.

Dearest Princess and Notoriously will both be making their first start at 4. Dearest Princess was the champion 3-year-old filly in B.C. last year and Notoriously dominated the same division in Alberta.