Updated on 09/17/2011 10:53AM

'Jack Flash' is stakes savvy


Stately Jack Flash is the one to beat in Sunday's $10,000 Flying Lark Stakes at Portland Meadows in Portland, Ore.

Not only is he the only stakes winner in the field, but only one of his six rivals, Lacenter Flash, has even appeared in a stakes race.

Stately Jack Flash, who has a pair of seconds in stakes, had never finished worse than second before his sixth-place finish in a one-mile allowance race here on Jan. 25.

That finish sets up one of the subplots in the six-furlong Flying Lark.

Trainer Margaret Root, who also owns Stately Jack Flash and bred him with her husband, Dr. Jack Root Jr., was not happy with the ride she got from Juan Gutierrez, the meet's leading rider and the only jockey in Stately Jack Flash's six-race career.

Gutierrez will not ride Sunday, but will be aboard Catch My Ice, who breaks just outside Stately Jack Flash in post 7.

"I demanded the rider take him back," Root said of Stately Jack Flash's sixth-place finish. "He said he had to fight him so hard, he had nothing left.

"I was disappointed and somewhat flabbergasted by the race."

Root has tried to get Stately Jack Flash to come more from off the pace in his races. Stately Jack Flash has enough early speed to lay close on his own, but Root thinks he will be more effective if taken back a bit.

That's the reason for the jockey switch to Bobby Webb and the removal of blinkers.

Catch My Ice and I Won't Apollogize were both wire-to-wire winners in their debuts. French Season and Lacenter Flash have both shown good early speed.

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