Updated on 09/17/2011 10:52AM

Local star faces pair of tough shippers


SUNLAND PARK, N. M. - Sunday's six-furlong, $50,000-added Czaria Handicap at Sunland Park pits Devious Ways, the top local older female sprinter, against two tough invaders from Fair Grounds.

They are Cielo Girl, trained by Steve Asmussen, and Calma Prado, who has been here for two weeks with trainer Clifford Lambert Sr.

Devious Ways rose to the top of the division in her first start as a 4-year-old, impressively winning last month's Bold Ego Handicap here. She came into her own last summer, winning the Ruidoso Oaks.

After the Ruidoso meet, she was given a rest by trainer Todd Fincher. In her first race back, on Dec. 17, she prepped for the Bold Ego in an allowance race, which she won easily. The Bold Ego was a local affair, however, and she will face tougher competition on Sunday.

Devious Ways, who looks to be the dominant speed in the race, is owned by Fincher in partnership with Brad King. Casey Lambert has the mount.

Cielo Girl is coming off a fourth-place finish in a classified allowance at Fair Grounds.

Cielo Girl, owned by Rosendo Parra, went through her conditions at Lone Star last spring and went on to be a stakes performer at Louisiana Downs and Sam Houston, winning or placing in five straight stakes. Cielo Girl prefers a stalking style and will be ridden by Sal Gonzalez.

Calma Prado also comes out of a Fair Grounds classified allowance race, at one mile on the turf, in which she raced close to the pace before tiring.

Calma Prado, however, prefers sprinting and is getting a break in the weights for the Czaria, toting 116 compared to the 122 for Devious Ways and 121 for Cielo Girl. Calma Prado, owned by Robert and Myrna Luttrell, will be ridden by Daryl Montoya.

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