08/31/2013 1:54PM

Portland Meadows: Portland Mile's race flow looks good for Why Not Be Perfect


Why Not Be Perfect, a late-runner in a speed-laden field, headlines the $35,000 Portland Mile on Monday at Portland Meadows, part of an 11-race holiday card that includes six other stakes races and a total purse distribution of more than $139,000. It’s the biggest day of the meeting at Oregon’s flagship track, though the marquee race almost assuredly will be won by an outsider.

Of the nine horses expected to compete in the Portland Mile, five have shipped in from Emerald Downs, along with two from Boise, and one from Hastings in Vancouver, British Columbia. Only Snowbound Hero, who defeated $5,000 claimers in his most recent start at Portland Meadows, will be on hand to represent the home team.

Why Not Be Perfect, who has started at 10 different tracks during a 47-start career, will break from post 2 in his first appearance at Portland Meadows, a favorable starting point for a horse who figures to save ground behind a fast pace before launching his bid around the turn.

Claimed by trainer Jeff Metz for $40,000 at Santa Anita last October, Why Not Be Perfect has won four times for current owners J C Racing Stable. He captured the one-mile Hank Mills Sr. Handicap on dirt at Turf Paradise in December and added two other stakes victories on grass at the Phoenix track. But his most impressive victory came in his first start for Metz – a front-running $91.60 stunner in an optional $62,500 claimer on the turf at Betfair Hollywood Park.

In his most recent outing, Why Not Be Perfect rallied to finish sixth in the Grade 3 Longacres Mile at Emerald Downs and might have been closer had he not been forced to steady after clipping heels on the far turn.

Candy for Debbie, Polish Dollar, and Dare Me Devil – all highly competitive in allowance and top-tier claiming races at Emerald Downs – also are likely to attract plenty of interest in the wagering, as will Crew Leader, a stakes winner at Hastings in 2011. In his best start this year, Candy for Debbie won a first-level allowance race at Pleasanton in early July. He will break from post 3 and is likely to make a bid for the early lead.