07/26/2006 11:00PM

Kimchi goes for the sweep

Michael Burns Photo Ltd.
Kimchi, winning the Bison City Stakes on July 2, will make her first start on turf Saturday in the $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Kimchi will try to become the first to sweep the Canadian filly triple crown when she makes her turf debut in the $250,000 Wonder Where Stakes on Saturday at Woodbine.

Before this year, only Catch the Ring in 2000 had won the first two legs of the Canadian filly triple, a series that began in 1999. After taking the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks at Woodbine and the 1 1/16-mile Bison City Stakes at Fort Erie, Catch the Ring ran second to her stablemate Misty Mission in the 1 1/4-mile Wonder Where, missing out on a $350,000 bonus.

There is no bonus offered this year, but trainer Mark Casse said that a victory Saturday should lock up a Sovereign Award for Kimchi. "If she wins, I got to think she'll be champion 3-year-old filly," Casse said.

Kimchi won the Oaks by 1 3/4 lengths and the Bison City by 1 1/4 lengths, with Sweet Breanna finishing second in both.

"The Oaks was tough, because nothing went right going into the race, but she was still able to get it done," Casse said. "She trained really well going into the Bison City, and everything went right. I think she's progressed since that race. She's doing quite well. I'm as confident as you can be in horse racing."

Casse said Kimchi, a daughter of Langfuhr, figures to handle the grass.

"I'm happy with the way she's breezed on the turf," Casse said. "A lot of the Langfuhrs move up on the grass. I think she'll really like it."

Sweet Breanna is also in the 12-horse field, along with three Sam-Son Farm runners, including Strike Softly.

Before the series, Sweet Breanna beat Kimchi by 5 1/4 lengths in a 1 1/16-mile allowance on dirt May 13. Trainer Steve Attard said a longer distance on the turf should be ideal for Sweet Breanna.

"The farther for her, the better, and grass is her surface," Attard said. "At the beginning of the year, we never thought about the Oaks or the Bison City. The race we had in mind was the Wonder Where."

By Sahm out of a Roberto mare, Sweet Breanna has one start on turf, a one-mile maiden special weight last September, when she rallied to finish second by a half-length.

"With her pedigree, she's supposed to be much better on turf," said Attard. "She's in very good shape right now. Hopefully, we can turn the tables on Kimchi."

Strike Softly, seventh as the favorite in the Oaks, won her first stakes in the July 9 Ontario Damsel, a 6 1/2-furlong turf sprint.