10/04/2012 3:20PM

Keeneland: Aruna back to defend her Spinster title

Four-Footed Fotos
Defending champion Aruna is one of 13 fillies and mares entered in Sunday's Grade 1 Spinster Stakes at Keeneland.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Aruna will start from post 3 with Ramon Dominguez aboard in defending her title against 12 other fillies and mares in the Grade 1, $500,000 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes, which will be run Sunday for the 57th time at Keeneland.

Aruna, trained by Graham Motion, has raced exclusively on turf in her 17-race career with one notable exception: her half-length victory under Dominguez as the 2-1 favorite in the 2011 Spinster. Since then, the 5-year-old mare has won one of five starts and comes into the Spinster, which goes at 1 1/8 miles on Polytrack, off a nightmarish trip when finishing 10th and last in the Aug. 18 Beverly D. on the Arlington Park turf.

“She lost the race with a terrible start, and it got worse from there when she almost fell at the quarter pole,” said Motion.

Another Spinster entry for Motion is Summer Soiree (post 4, Gabriel Saez), a Team Valor International filly who also is entered Saturday in the Grade 1 First Lady on the Keeneland turf.

From the rail, this is the Spinster field: Disposablepleasure, Juanita, Aruna, Summer Soiree, In Lingerie, Tiz Miz Sue, Upperline, Nefertini, Smart Sting, Starformer, Mystical Star, Karlovy Vary, and Kitty in a Tizzy.

The Spinster is a Win and You’re In for the Nov. 2 Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic at Santa Anita. It is carded as the eighth of nine races and anchors the final card of the three-day FallStars Weekend. First post is 1:05 p.m. Eastern, with the Spinster set for 4:49.

Directly preceding the Spinster as the seventh race Sunday is the Grade 3, $150,000 Bourbon Stakes, a Win and You’re In event toward the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita. The 1 1/16-mile turf race drew an oversubscribed field of 14 2-year-olds, including two also-eligibles.

The Bourbon field includes several horses who also were entered to race Saturday in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Futurity on the Keeneland Poly, most notably Balance the Books and Joha, the respective one-two finishers in the Aug. 30 With Anticipation Stakes on the Saratoga turf.