10/24/2008 12:00AM

Laragh the favorite, but several can win


ARCADIA, Calif. - Trainers Graham Motion and David Donk sat side by side at the second session of the Breeders' Cup post position draw Tuesday at Santa Anita, and they voiced a common perception of the inaugural edition of the $1 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf.

"It's a wide-open race," Motion said. Moments later, Donk quoted almost verbatim, adding only the word, "very" to Motion's synopsis.

Motion entered Saucey Evening in the one-mile Juvenile Fillies Turf, Donk a filly named Freedom Rings, and both horses are not the garden-variety million-dollar-race performers.

"I don't think I've ever had a 2-year-old of any kind running for $1 million," Motion said, "much less one that broke their maiden at Colonial [Downs]."

As for Donk, he said it was "either run for a million dollars or go in a New York-bred maiden" with Freedom Rings, who missed winning the Grade 3 Miss Grillo at Belmont by a neck, but has yet to win a race of any kind after three starts.

Laragh should be favored on the strength of her 4 3/4-length victory just two weekends ago in the Jessamine Stakes at Keeneland. Making her first start for trainer John Terranova, Laragh set a fast pace and won easily in that 1 1/16-mile race and she figures to go for the lead again Friday.

"She likes to be into the bridle when she trains," said Terranova, who took over Laragh's training in late September. "She's not tough, but she's definitely into her training. I'm happy to let her do her thing. She knows what she likes to do."

In her last race before leaving Canada for New York, Laragh finished fifth over soft turf in the Natalma Stakes, won by Juvenile Fillies Turf runner C Karma. C Karma, who shipped here from Woodbine for trainer Gregory de Gannes, won a Polytrack maiden race and finished third in the Ontario Debutante before making her grass debut in the Natalma.

Maram, a $75,000 maiden-claiming winner in her two-turn turf career debut at Saratoga, won the Miss Grillo over a wet Belmont course on Oct. 1 and is one of three fillies exiting that race. Second-place Freedom Rings missed by a neck and might not have been at her best on the tiring grass.

"I think she just tolerated it, gave a workmanlike performance," Donk said.

Fourth in the Miss Grillo was Shug McGaughey-trained Consequence, who had a sparkling Pro-Ride work here earlier this week. Consequence debuted with a turf-sprint win at Saratoga and should move forward in her third career start.

"I think the wet turf affected her some last out," McGaughey said. "She'd had only the one five-and-a-half race, I hadn't trained her hard, and she didn't have the best trip. I think she's going to be much better staying on top of the ground."

Saucey Evening hasn't turfed since her debut win at Colonial, but although she won the Cal Cup Juvenile Fillies going two turns on Pro-Ride here last out, Motion said: "To me, she's a grass horse."

Saucey Evening will be fitted with blinkers for the first time Saturday.

First-time turfer Sugar Mom goes for her fourth straight and won the $100,000 Kentucky Cup Juvenile Fillies over Turfway Polytrack last out, but trainer Wayne Catalano raved about a turf work Sugar Mom had in September at Arlington, and Sugar Mom has the pedigree to be at least as effective switching surfaces.

Renda is another first-time turf horse who has worked strongly on turf, according to trainer Juan Arias. Renda has won a pair of two-turn races by a combined 12 1/4 lengths while facing lesser competition.

Emmy Darling bloomed this summer at Hollywood but slumped at Del Mar. And the Europeans in the race look surprisingly mediocre. Beyond Our Reach is a maiden, and her third in a Group 1 at the Curragh came over soft turf. April Pride has only a maiden win from seven starts. The Aidan O'Brien-trained Heart Shaped has the best overall overseas form, but drew post 12, a tough spot going one mile on this course.