08/20/2010 3:59PM

Miss Singhsix will try to give Wolfson two in a row in Personal Ensign

Jim Lisa
Trainer Marty Wolfson plans to run Jessica Is Back in the Grade 1 Ballerina at Saratoga.

MIAMI – A year ago, trainer Marty Wolfson sent Icon Project up from her Calder base to dominate Saratoga’s Grade 1 Personal Ensign by 13 lengths. Wolfson will try to do it again next Sunday with Miss Singhsix, who ships up from Calder to face two of the queens of the division, Rachel Alexandra and Life At Ten, in defense of Wolfson’s Personal Ensign title.

Like Icon Project, who never raced again following her huge performance in the Personal Ensign, Miss Singhsix will bring a modest r é sum é into the race, with only a single Grade 3 victory to her credit. An Irish-bred daughter of Singspiel, Miss Singhsix has chased home Life At Ten to no avail twice this season, when finishing third in Hawthorne’s Grade 3 Sixty Sails and second last month in the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap.

“Miss Singhsix was invited to the Personal Ensign, and I’m going to bring her up and run her,” Wolfson said. “The decision hinged on having enough speed in the race, and the fact that both Rachel Alexandra and Life At Ten are running may be to our advantage, because it should assure an honest pace. If just one or the other ran, not both, I wasn’t going to come. They are both great fillies, but at a mile and one quarter you never know. My horse loves that distance, so we’re going to take a shot.”

Miss Singhsix is one of four horses Wolfson will bring to Saratoga next weekend. He also plans to run both Jessica Is Back and First Passage in the Grade 1 Ballerina and Cherokee Queen in the Ballston Spa. Wolfson won the 1996 Ballerina with Chaposa Springs.

“Both Jessica Is Back and First Passage are doing well and seven-eighths is such a great distance for both fillies,” Wolfson said. “Right now, it appears Informed Decision will be the favorite for the Ballerina, and while I think she is very, very good, she seems to be more of a synthetic freak than a dirt horse. When I won the Ballerina with Chaposa Springs, we beat a very strong field that included Capote Belle that year. I just don’t thing the race is coming up as tough this year as it has in previous ones.”

Gourmet Dinner likely staying home

Originally, owner-breeder William Terrill said he was “strongly considering” sending his undefeated Gourmet Dinner to Saratoga for the Grade 1 Hopeful, following his victory in the Dr. Fager Stakes here earlier this month. But on Friday, his good friend and stable adviser Steve Standridge said it was now “90 percent” likely Gourmet Dinner would instead stay home, where he’ll be favored to win Saturday’s $100,000 Affirmed Stakes.

Standridge, who now serves as assistant to trainer Peter Guylas, said Gourmet Dinner will work here Monday, after which a final decision would be made.

Owner Oxenberg dies at 89

The local racing community lost a good friend, with the passing of longtime owner Bea Oxenberg, who died Thursday at the age of 89 in Boca Raton.

Oxenberg campaigned horses in south Florida with her husband Bernie, who died seven years earlier, for nearly four decades.

“She was like an owner from a bygone era,” trainer Edward Plesa Jr. said. “I had horses for her and Bernie for nearly 30 years, and she was a true asset to the game. She was both a great owner and a great friend.”

Plesa called Best of the Rest the best of the Oxenberg horse he trained over the years.

A funeral service will be held for Oxenberg at noon Sunday at Beth David Memorial Gardens, 3201 NW 72nd Ave., Hollywood, Fla.