07/21/2010 12:32PM

Perfect Cherokee may be sitting on first win


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Several promising older maidens will take part in Friday’s nominal Woodbine feature, including the Roger Attfield-trained Perfect Cherokee, who should be well-backed in the 1 1/16-mile maiden special on Polytrack.

Perfect Cherokee took some support as the 7-1 fourth choice when he debuted in a difficult maiden special route July 2. He stalked a moderate pace along the inside then before joining favored Prized Humour on the lead early in the stretch. Prized Humour rebuffed his challenge, but Perfect Cherokee managed to finish a clear second while registering a Beyer Speed Figure of 78.

Perfect Cherokee breezed five-eighths in 1:00 over a Polytrack that yielded quick times last Friday, and appears to be in fine fettle. Chantal Sutherland retains the mount on the Charles Fipke homebred.

Miami Deco struggled last winter on the dirt at Gulfstream, before going to the sidelines. Following a three-month layoff here June 13, he gave favored Smart Sky all that he could handle in a nine-furlong maiden special, losing by a head while earning an 81 Beyer Figure. Smart Sky returned to finish seventh in the Queen’s Plate.

Miami Deco has worked three half-miles leading up to this engagement, including a 47.60-second breeze July 8. Patrick Husbands will ride him for trainer Brian Lynch, who has been on a roll of late.

The Stronach Stable entry of Holy Knight and Gigantos are both trained by Sean Smullen.

Holy Knight, a 5-year-old by Sligo Bay, is a half-brother to Grade 1 winners Ghostzapper and City Zip.

Holy Knight showed very little in his first three outings, all on the grass at Gulfstream. He woke up in a nine-furlong maiden special on the Polytrack here May 28, finishing a fast-closing second with an 86 Beyer. The tepid pace hindered his chances most recently, when he was a nonthreatening third behind Perfect Cherokee.

Gigantos, a 4-year-old Giant’s Causeway colt, has failed to hit the board in three races. He was a wide sixth behind Perfect Cherokee and Holy Knight July 2.

Empire Rising finished fifth in the same July 2 event, after breaking awkwardly and then running in an early stalking position. He’s shedding the blinkers, a 15 percent angle for trainer Mark Frostad during the past five years.

Bear in Control was a prominent third in his last start behind the sharp first-timer Arrow’s Conquest, who subsequently captured a first-level allowance.