01/25/2008 12:00AM

Lady's Purse is right back


PORTLAND, Ore. - Lady's Purse, a romping winner over three overmatched rivals in last Sunday's $16,600 OTOBA Stallion Stakes, will come back for more in a little over a week.

"I nominated her to run back in a one-mile invitational handicap for 3-year-old fillies on Monday," said trainer G.D. Khalsa. "If that race doesn't fill, she can go against the boys in another one-mile invitational handicap on Tuesday.

"Her race last Sunday didn't seem to take much out of her," Khalsa said, "and she is the kind of filly who bounces back quickly from her races anyway. There really isn't any reason not to run her back."

It should come as no surprise that Lady's Purse exited the six-furlong Stallion Stakes much as she entered the race, because she won like a 1-9 shot should, which is to say effortlessly. Lady's Purse, an Oregon-bred daughter of Bagshot and Pancho's Girl, sat behind the dueling Delegocho and Byers Hope to the quarter pole, when she slipped through along the inside and quickly drew out to score by more than 10 lengths without ever being asked to run by rider Joe Crispin. Her time of 1:12.80 for six furlongs was good for a Beyer Speed Figure of 73, the best of an eight-race career that has netted 5 wins, 2 seconds, and a third.

"Everything went the way we hoped it would," said Khalsa. "The only real suspense was getting her from the backside to the paddock in one piece. She can be a real handful until she gets to the paddock, but from then on she is all business. My exercise rider, Chuck McCormick, has done a lot of work with her, and it is starting to pay off. She is a little easier to handle each time we bring her over."

Lady's Purse comes by her volatile nature honestly, by the way. Dr. Jack Root, who stands her sire, Bagshot, at his Oakhurst Thoroughbred, said the sire had an even worse temper.

"Bagshot retired sound after 31 races, and he was still running very well," he said. "The reason they had to retire him was that he became unmanageable. He hurt a couple of his handlers, and it just wasn't worth it to go on with him. We've been hoping he wouldn't pass that trait along to his offspring, and for the most part he hasn't done that."

Jimbos Fire Ant sent to farm

Speaking of difficult horses, trainer Cookie Root reported that Jimbos Fire Ant, who won 2 of her 3 meetings with Lady's Purse at this stand, will be getting some time off for bad behavior.

Jimbos Fire Ant, a daughter of Baquero who races for James and Carol Owens, won 3 of her 4 races here, including the $42,000 Os West Oregon Futurity in December, despite developing some unfortunate habits. Chief among her faults was a penchant for pulling herself up in the middle of her workouts, and even in her races. She overcame that antic to win the Futurity in a truly remarkable performance, but the problem demanded to be addressed.

Cookie Root sent Jimbos Fire Ant to her son, trainer Ben Root, at Turf Paradise in hopes that a change of scenery would cure whatever it was that ailed her, but it didn't. Racing for the first time in Phoenix last Saturday in the one-mile Sun Devil Stakes, Jimbos Fire Ant led through a quarter-mile, then pulled herself up for no apparent reason and was eased by rider J.C. Estrada. With that, Cookie Root had seen enough.

"I'm going to ask the owners to let me turn her out on our farm with some of my tough old mares," the trainer said. "She has just gotten so hard to handle, and she doesn't respect anybody. I think part of the problem is that she was raised alone, and she never really went through the socialization process that other horses experience. Maybe it's not too late for the old mares to teach her some manners."

Stablemates apart for now

Victorysgotalotahope emerged from the shadow of stablemate Snip N Dale to win last Sunday's Memorial Stakes for 3-year-old Quarter Horses in style, drawing off to score by nearly two lengths after 350 yards in 17.91 seconds, just .25 of a second off the track record held by the brilliant In Search of Fame.

Of course it may have helped that Snip N Dale, who defeated Victorysgotalotahope twice en route to five straight wins, was not in the race.

"I decided to freshen Snip N Dale up for the Derby Trials next month and the Derby on March 10," said Scott Raley, who trains both horses. "Snip N Dale had been running awfully hard, and I actually made the decision to rest him before he won the Far West Futurity in December. I think it was the right decision for both horses. Snip N Dale got the rest he needed, and Victorysgotalotahope got a little boost for his confidence. He has been getting better every race, and I'm really not sure Snip N Dale could have beaten him today. It should be interesting to see them run against each other in the Derby."