08/05/2010 2:09PM

Prairie Meadows meet ends with Iowa Classics night


ALTOONA, Iowa – The seven Iowa-bred stakes that comprise Saturday’s Iowa Classics card mark the close of the Prairie Meadows Thoroughbred meet. The track will reopen with Quarter Horse racing on Aug. 13

The $85,000 Donna Reed for older fillies and mares at a mile and 70 yards is the most competitive race on the card. Leading trainer Lynn Chleborad will send out the triple threat of Passion Talk, Friend O the Devil, and Courtney J in the 12-horse field.

Friend O the Devil returns off a neck loss to LD’s Shes Special in a one-mile statebred allowance on July 19.

“At first we didn’t think she wanted to run over six furlongs,” Chleborad said. “As she has matured she has shown that she’s more versatile. I know she can do a route, a mile-seventy, we’ll have to see.”

Passion Talk is coming off a win in a conditioned allowance.

“She was coming off a two-year layoff this year and is just now getting into her best perfomance.” Chleborad said.

Chleborad indicated that the two-year layoff was due to a bowed tendon in one of Passion Talk’s hind legs.

Courtney J finished third last year in this race and in her next start was claimed from Chleborad for $20,000. Chleborad claimed her back for $5,000 on July 12.

“I think I have her fixed-up,” Chleborad said. “If she goes back to her past performances she has a good shot.”

Kelly Von Hemel also has multiple horses in the race. Go Milan Go started the year with a pair of second-place finishes against some of the best Iowa-bred fillies and mares on the grounds before winning a conditioned allowance May 28.

“She backed off a bit after three good races,” Von Hemel said. “We freshened her up a bit for this. She has worked really good and been galloping out really well.”

Von Hemel’s other entrant, Lovethatponi enters off a conditioned open-company allowance win.

“I wish we had a little better post,” he said. “Hopefully, with 12 in the field, it will be one of those races where it’ll take a little racing luck to win.”

Everyone may need a little luck to defeat LD’s Shes Special. Owned, bred, and trained by Larry Dunbar, she has been very good in her last two outs, winning the Hawkeyes Handicap at 1 1/16 miles and a non-conditioned allowance for statebreds.

* The $85,000 Ralph Hayes for older males at 1 1/16 miles presents an interesting match-up between last year’s winner, Red Hot N Gold, who is making his 2010 debut; Tiger Lake, who is coming off a couple of nice races on the turf at Canterbury Park; and Kate’s Main Man, winner of the Cyclones Handicap here June  12.

* In the $60,000 Iowa Classic Sprint at six furlongs, 2007 race winner Wild L will take on eight others in his 2010 debut.

* In the $75,000 Iowa Breeders’ Derby at 1 1/16 miles, Gray’s Lake winner Cainam leads a field of nine in his attempt to score a fourth win at the meet.

* In the $75,000 Iowa Breeders’ Oaks at a mile and 70 yards, She’s Better Loud enters as the only 2010 stakes winner in a field of nine. On May 31, she won the Bob Bryant, a stakes for 3-year-old Iowa-bred fillies going six furlongs.

* In the $75,000 Sorority for 2-year-old fillies at six furlongs, Launch Light Lady heads a field of eight. She is coming off an impressive win against males in the Iowa Stallion Futurity.

* The $75,000 Iowa Cradle for colts and geldings at six furlongs doesn’t offer a single to start the pick six. Morning-line favorite Dynamic Within, coming off a fourth-place finish in the Prairie Gold Juvenile, leads a talented and developing field of eight 2-year-olds.