06/22/2011 1:01PM

Hastings: Orchid’s Silver back against girls


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Orchid’s Silver should appreciate being back with her own sex when she runs in a $12,500 claiming race for fillies and mares that will serve as Friday’s feature at Hastings. The 1 1/16-mile race drew seven horses and will go as race 6 on the seven-race card that begins at 7:15 p.m. Pacific.

Trained by Terry Dubois, Orchid’s Silver came close to upsetting males at the same price and distance June 5. With Marlo Dunn in the irons, Orchid’s Silver didn’t break that sharply but made the lead by the time they hit the first turn. Setting honest fractions while under pressure from Bobby Handy, she fought back bravely after falling behind at the top of the stretch. She was able to regain the lead from Bobby Handy in midstretch, but couldn’t hold off Joy of the Lord late. It was a very game performance, however, and a similar effort would likely make her the winner Friday.

The only caveat is that she is picking up nine pounds, with Dunn retaining the mount.

Ebony N Ice could be the sleeper. She is stepping up in class after winning a $7,500 conditional claiming race May 23, and she won’t mind the move to the distance as she won the $103,000 Fantasy Stakes as a 2-year-old in 2009. Last year, she went winless in six starts while running against stakes-caliber horses at Hastings and Northlands Park. Ebony N Ice was transferred to Toni Cloutier’s barn this winter, and Cloutier had her ready to go when she dropped into a claiming race for the first time in her career.

Diva Ballerina also is moving into open company after winning a 1 1/16-mile, $12,500 claiming race for nonwinners of two. Trained by Dave Forster, Diva Ballerina has compiled a solid 2-2-1 record from five starts at the distance and should get a nice trip from just off of Orchid’s Silver.

Quillo’s Intention, sharp in her last two sprints at this level, has good tactical speed going long and shouldn’t mind the added distance. She came from just off the pace to win May 23, and she was a close fourth June 11.

Rainbowsinthewood figures to improve in her first try at a middle distance this year. All four of her wins have come at 1 1/16 miles, and she closed with good speed to finish three-quarters of a length behind Quillo’s Intention in her first start at the meet June 11.