09/07/2012 1:46PM

Hastings: Versatile Evelyn's Dancer will be tough in B.C. Oaks

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Hastings
Evelyn's Dancer comfortably wins the Emerald Downs Stakes at Hastings.

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Evelyn’s Dancer has easily handled the local 3-year-old fillies at Hastings while giving away significant amounts of weight. In her last start she packed 125 pounds and conceded from 10 to 16 pounds while winning the Hong Kong Jockey Club. How tough will she be at equal weights in the $100,000 British Columbia Oaks on Sunday? In a word: formidable.

The 1 1/8-mile Oaks drew seven horses and goes as the fifth race on a 10-race card that includes the Grade 3, $200,000 British Columbia Derby.

Evelyn’s Dancer is versatile, so Mario Gutierrez will have more than one option when they leave the gate from post position 6. She tracked a quick pace when she won the Emerald Downs Stakes at Hastings on June 10 and she led right from the start in her easy win over Our Eleanor in the Supernaturel on July 7.

Her trainer Troy Taylor is happy with the way she is coming into the race.

“She’s never been better,” said Taylor. “My only concern is she wanted to run off in her last race and she’ll need to be more relaxed to go a mile and an eighth.”

Champagneandcaviar ships in from Emerald Downs off a game win in the $75,000 Washington Oaks at 1 1/8 miles on Aug. 11. Similar to her win in the Kent Handicap on July 15, Champagneandcaviar was headed in the stretch but fought back to edge Exclusive Diva.

“She’s got a lot of heart,” said her trainer, Howard Belvoir. “She is doing well and I don’t think she’ll have any trouble with the turns. She’s really improved since she started stretching out.”

Madeira Park is peaking at the right time for trainer Dave Forster. She is coming off an 8 1/4-length win in the $50,000 Sonoma Handicap at Northlands Park on Aug. 25.

Racing for Gold could be dangerous if an honest pace develops.

Our Eleanor beat Evelyn’s Dancer sprinting in the Ross McLeod Memorial here May 19 and is coming off a good third in the Washington Oaks.