04/06/2010 11:00PM

Lady's Wish tries move up in ranks


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla - With the highest Beyer Speed Figure in the field belonging to a horse exiting a $20,000 claiming race, Friday's $48,000 allowance feature at Gulfstream Park looks like a real head-scratcher. It also might be a nice spot to grab a little value for handicappers who are sharp or lucky enough to select the winner from the nine older fillies and mares competing at 1 1/16 miles over the inner turf course.

Lady's Wish will be among the favorites after posting a career-best Beyer Figure of 80 dominating a field of lower-level conditioned claimers less than three weeks earlier. Trainer Steve Klesaris plucked Lady's Wish, a 4-year-old daughter of Johar, out of that race for what seems like a bargain price and even lured the meet's leading and hottest rider, Paco Lopez, for the assignment. The question is whether she can stand the hike to allowance company after having made all previous 10 career starts in the selling ranks.

Top turf trainers and friendly rivals Bill Mott and Christophe Clement will also be represented in Friday's headliner.

Mott sends out the lightly raced First Grade for the first time since the daughter of Smart Strike was transferred to his barn from Jerry Hollendorfer's in California. First Grade, a daughter of Smart Strike, made all four career starts last year at 3 on the West Coast. She won her maiden at Hollywood Park last May but has been sidelined since finishing a tiring fifth under entry-level allowance conditions over the same course in mid-July.

Clement counters with Moving Heart, another member of the field with plenty of questions to answer. Moving Heart will be making her U.S. debut after beginning her career in her native Ireland, where she won just once in eight tries at 2 and 3. Like First Grade, Moving Heart also appears to be training forwardly at Payson Park for her return.

Among those who could offer a bit of value in this spot is Boleyn, who was graded stakes placed at 2 but has never raced on turf. Boleyn, who began her career with Todd Pletcher before being transferred to trainer Marty Wolfson, has started once this meet, finishing a tiring third behind the multiple graded stakes placed Casanova Move. She set the pace to the stretch of that one-mile optional claiming race over the main course on March 13.