04/11/2011 3:01PM

Kentucky Oaks getting Lilacs and Lace as starter

Keeneland/Coady Photography
Lilacs and Lace joined 2000 winner Rings a Chime as Northern California fillies who won the Grade 1 Ashland at Keeneland.

LEXINGTON, kY. - Lilacs and Lace, who stunned an ontrack Saturday crowd of 23,155 at Keeneland with her wire-to-wire triumph at 48-1 in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes, will proceed to the May 6 Kentucky Oaks, assuming all goes well, said trainer John Terranova.

“She’ll stay here at Keeneland a little while,” said Terranova. “I’m running some other horses Derby week at Churchill, so I’ll probably send her over about a week before the Oaks.”

Meanwhile, Kathmanblu, third as the 2-1 favorite in the Ashland, is all in for the Oaks, said trainer Ken McPeek. “Hopefully this race will set us up just right,” said McPeek. “The filly had a wide trip and actually ran a pretty solid race.”

The connections of the Ashland runner-up, Wyomia, said they may take a few days to decide about the Oaks.

Evening Jewel returning

Evening Jewel, an Eclipse Award nominee in the 3-year-old division last year, will run in a Grade 1 event at Keeneland for the third straight meet when she goes Thursday as the favorite in the $300,000 Vinery Madison.

Last year, Evening Jewel won the Ashland in the spring and was third in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup in the fall. The filly is based at Santa Anita with trainer Jim Cassidy.

Nine fillies and mares are entered in the seven-furlong Madison, including the defending champion, Dr. Zic.

The Madison starts a huge week of stakes, with the Grade 1 Maker’s Mark following Friday.

McPeek ahead of his game

McPeek, who won the training title here last fall with 10 wins, was asked before this meet started how many winners he thought he might have at the 15-day spring meet. “Maybe five or six, I hope,” he said.

Well, his allotment is almost up: McPeek sent out four winners on the three-day opening weekend to take the early lead atop the trainer standings. Terranova also had a terrific start with three winners, while Tom Proctor, Chad Brown, and Wesley Ward all sent out two winners apiece.

◗ Allen Stacy, the Eclipse Award-winning apprentice in 1986, was among the coat-and-tie crowd here Saturday. Stacy won 1,056 races while riding primarily in Maryland before retiring in 1997 and now works in heating and air-conditioning in Washington, D.C.

“I rode here a few times, but I’d never experienced this side until today,” said Stacy. “Very interesting.”

◗ The new pick five wager has gotten the fans’ attention. For the first three days, the 50-cent minimum bet drew an average handle of just under $99,000, with the payoffs being $7,321, $37,810, and $7,842. The pick five, which replaced the $2 pick six, is offered on the last five races daily.

◗ Jim O’Hern, a professional golfer who helped to assemble the Tin Cup Stable trained by Hal Wiggins, died Saturday afternoon following an illness. He was 72. A memorial service is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, said Dan Kenny, a longtime friend.

◗ Nominations close Wednesday for five stakes at Keeneland and for 10 Derby-week supporting stakes at Churchill.

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