06/26/2013 1:15PM

Northlands Park: Madeira Park to lay closer to pace in John Patrick

Ryan Haynes
Madeira Park, winner of last year's Sonoma, returns to Northlands Park for Friday's $50,000 John Patrick.

Madeira Park returns to Northlands Park on Friday in search of her first win of the year in the $50,000 John Patrick. The one-mile feature for fillies and mares drew seven horses and appears to be a wide-open event.

Based on her easy wins in the $50,000 Sonoma and the $50,000 Duchess of York at Northlands, Madeira Park was voted the champion 3-year-old filly in Alberta last year. Trained by Dave Forster, Madeira Park won the 1 1/16-mile stakes races by a combined total of 14 1/4 lengths.

Forster said he was looking for a little easier company after Madeira Park finished fifth in the $50,000 Vancouver Sun at Hastings going 1 1/16 miles on June 9. He also was pleased with the way she worked five furlongs in 59.60 seconds with Robert Skelly aboard at Hastings last Sunday.

“That was a good work for her,” Forster said. “Northlands is a little deeper track, and she can lay a lot closer than she had been in her races at Hastings.”

Forster said he also was pleased to get a “pretty good rider” in Quincy Welch.

Plethora will be the one they are chasing, and she is capable of carrying her considerable speed the whole way. Trained by Craig Smith, Plethora scored a front-running win in the one-mile Red K. Smith last year. She could be ready for a peak effort after setting a fast pace before giving way grudgingly to Awesome Plan going six furlongs in the $50,000 Wild Rose Handicap on June 7.

Awesome Plan, trained by Dennis Terry, chased and caught Plethora in the Wild Rose, but the only time she tried a middle distance, she finished sixth. It was just the third start of her career, though, and both of her siblings to race are route winners, so she should get the distance.

Claresmiezie may have bounced when she finished a distant third in the Wild Rose, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see her rebound with a big effort Friday. Trained by Greg Tracy, Claresmieze was an easy 6 1/4-length winner of am optional $35,000 claimer going six furlongs May 17 and she won’t mind the added distance. She finished second to Plethora in last year’s Red K. Smith before romping by 7 3/4 lengths in the one-mile, $50,000 Assiniboia Downs Oaks on Aug. 6.

Tempered Sapphire has tried a mile twice and won both times. Trained by Rod Cone. Tempered Sapphire won the Freedom of the City as a 2-year-old in 2011 and last year she beat Madeira Park in the Northlands Park Oaks.

Regal Tigereyes and Flashy Delight complete the field.