08/26/2010 1:01PM

Katy Now cuts back to sprint in Victory Ride

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – A cutback in distance, a drop in class, and a favorable set-up may give Katy Now a slight edge in a competitive field of 3-year-old fillies entered in Saturday’s Grade 3, $100,000 Victory Ride Stakes at Saratoga.

The Victory Ride, run at six furlongs, is the first leg of a pick-four wager that includes the Ballerina, King’s Bishop and Travers, with a guaranteed pool of $1 million.

Katy Now, a daughter of Tiznow, was purchased privately by Nicholas and James Brady’s Mill House following her 2-year-old season, which concluded with two off-the-pace wins sprinting in Kentucky. In her first start for Mill House and trainer Todd Pletcher, Kay Now won a second-level allowance race at Belmont going six furlongs. She was then stretched out to 1 1/16 miles in the Grade 1 Mother Goose on June 26, but faded to fourth after setting the early pace.

“I thought she ran a credible race, she was just a little too keen for the trip that day,” Pletcher said. “So cutting back in distance with a favorable outside post, we’ll see how things develop.”

There appears to be plenty of speed in the Victory Ride, led by California invaders Rapport and Sister Dawn. Rapport, trained by Bob Baffert, won two sprints at Hollywood Park before running off to a huge lead in Calder’s Grade 3 Azalea Stakes, where she faded to fourth. Rajiv Maragh rides from post 3.

Sister Dawn has won on synthetics and turf for trainer John Sadler, who feels the filly will handle the dirt. “We like her a lot,” Sadler said. “I’m not afraid to take her out of town and try her.”

Beyondallboundarys has won two straight including the Dearly Precious Stakes at Monmouth Park. Trainer Tom Amoss noted that the filly has changed quite significantly since first coming to his barn in May.

“She was aggressive, wanted to get it over with,” Amoss said. “Now she’s very manageable.”

Calvin Borel rides Beyondallboundarys from post 7.

Touching Beauty hasn’t been out since winning the Grade 3 Comely at Aqueduct in April. She suffered a hock infection that forced her out of training for most of the spring.

My Jen, who won her first three starts, makes her return to the races after having a chip taken out of a knee following a seventh-place finish in the Grade 3 Old Hat at Gulfstream in January.