02/06/2013 5:10PM

Oaklawn Park: American Sugar seeks fourth stakes win

Coady Photography
American Sugar, winning the Dixie Belle by seven lengths last out, runs in the Martha Washington on Saturday.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - American Sugar, who dominated last month’s $60,000 Dixie Belle at Oaklawn, will be seeking her fourth stakes win Saturday when she runs in the $75,000 Martha Washington for 3-year-old fillies. Others that Oaklawn stakes coordinator Glenn Reeder expects for the Martha Washington include Rose to Gold, winner of the Grade 3, $500,000 Delta Downs Princess; Cloudy in Sandiego, a recent allowance winner at Fair Grounds; Liberty Girl, an allowance winner at Oaklawn; and possibly Awesome Mama, who is 2 for 2. Broken Spell, the runner-up in last year’s Grade 1 Alcibiades, is on deck for the race, trainer D. Wayne Lukas said.

American Sugar was a seven-length winner of the Dixie Belle, earning a career-high Beyer Speed Figure of 75. Her other stakes wins have come in the $75,000 Prairie Gold Lassie at Prairie Meadows last July and the $50,000 E.L. Gaylord at Remington in October. Lynn Chleborad, who trains American Sugar for Poindexter Thoroughbreds, likes the transition American Sugar has made from 2 to 3.

“She’s matured,” Chleborad said. “Some horses, from 2 to 3, it seems they improve mentally or they decline. She gets smarter and smarter. She’s so intelligent.

“It’s like you have a remote control with her. She just does what you say.”

Evidence of American Sugar’s maturity was on display in the Dixie Belle, when she found herself in the unfamiliar position of trailing after stumbling a few jumps away from the gate. She regrouped and launched an explosive rally on the final turn.

“She’s very athletic,” Chleborad said. “She just handles situations.”

Alex Birzer was aboard for the Dixie Belle and has the mount in the Martha Washington, Chleborad said.

The race is worth 10 points to the winner on a new points system for the Kentucky Oaks.