10/08/2012 2:53PM

Keeneland: Lady of Shamrock to miss Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup

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Benoit & Associates
Lady of Shamrock is not coming to Keeneland for the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup.

Keeneland racing secretary Ben Huffman said there is one notable defection from the list of invitees for the sixth and last Grade 1 race of the meet, the $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup on Saturday. Lady of Shamrock will not make the trip from California as originally hoped, Huffman said.

That leaves Stephanie’s Kitten and Samitar as the biggest names in a field of nine 3-year-old fillies for the 29th QEII, a 1 1/8-mile turf fixture. Others likely to start are Better Lucky, Centre Court, Dayatthespa, Leading Astray, Open Water, Somali Lemonade, and Tannery. Entries will be drawn Wednesday.

Stephanie’s Kitten, trained by Wayne Catalano, had her final QEII tune-up Sunday morning when breezing five furlongs in 1:02.60 over the Keeneland Polytrack. The same morning, Samitar, trained by Chad Brown, had her final work when breezing five furlongs in 1:01.20 over the Belmont Park turf.