03/17/2009 12:00AM

One last try for Magnetic Miss


NEW ORLEANS - Trainer Spanky Broussard is giving Magnetic Miss one last chance to prove that she can run at Fair Grounds, even though she has failed to hit the board in her five previous attempts.

When Magnetic Miss goes forward in the featured ninth race on Thursday, a six-furlong, third-level optional $62,500 claiming sprint, she will be facing six rivals. Even though Magnetic Miss is the most accomplished of the group, with more than $350,000 in earnings and several stakes victories, Broussard expresses little confidence in his mare's chances to win.

"I don't think she handles the Fair Grounds racetrack," said Broussard. "I wish she'd prove me wrong."

Magnetic Miss has done most of her winning against Illinois-bred fillies, which allows her to enter the race without running for the claiming price.

Even though she has padded her bankroll against Illinois-breds, she has finished well in open company, with a second-place finish at Arlington in the Safely Kept Stakes last Sept. 14, and a victory in the Genesis Stakes at Delta in January 2007.

Despite Magnetic Miss's bullet work on Feb. 19 over the main track here, Broussard downplays the idea that things will be different this time when it comes time to race.

"She's like a grass horse - she'll work over it, but she won't run over the main track," said Broussard. "I am going to give her one more try at the Fair Grounds, and it will get her ready for a stakes race next month up at Hawthorne."

With the classiest horse seemingly unable to thrive here, Steve Asmussen's two entries, P.S.U. Grad and Catera, look all the more promising.

P.S.U. Grad finished third in her last race, the Pan Zareta Stakes, 2 1/2 lengths in back of Precious Kiss, and has put together two quality efforts in her two races over the Fair Grounds surface.

The lightly raced Catera would seem to have the most upside of any of the entries. With only seven races on her resume, Catera enters off a victory in a second-level allowance over the main track. Two races ago, she finished third in the Bold Ego Handicap at Sunland, with a strong move to close distance on the winner.

Aronia, entered for the $62,500 tag, looks to rebound off a non-effort in her last race, as she was done after hopping at the break. If she races back to her performance two races ago, she could be closing at the end.