07/04/2013 11:14AM

Prairie Meadows: Rushin' Rubietta makes two-turn debut in Iowa Stallion Stakes


ALTOONA, Iowa – The $60,000-added Iowa Stallion Stakes, a mile and 70-yard test for 3-year olds at Prairie Meadows on Saturday, has drawn a field of six and is headed by the race’s lone supplementary nomination, Rushin’ Rubietta.

Rushin’ Rubietta, trained by Ray Tracy and supplemented by his owner-breeder Vince Sullivan for $15,000, has been on an upward curve this season, including a seven-length tally in the $41,984 Iowa Legacy Stakes on June 15. Winning in an unchallenged fashion while covering six furlongs in 1:09.36 as the 1-10 favorite, Rushin’ Rubietta marked himself as an Iowa-bred on the rise.

The key obstacle for Rushin’ Rubietta in the Iowa Stallion could be his inexperience around two turns, as all six of his lifetime starts have been in sprints. Jockey Alex Birzer, currently third in the local rider standings behind David Mello and Terry Thompson with 55 meet wins, retains the mount and will try to nurse Rushin’ Rubietta’s speed around the Prairie Meadows oval.

The opposition is headed by the Canterbury Park shipper Bet Your Life, a Mike Biehler-trained Minnesota-bred who won last July’s Iowa Stallion Futurity when conditioned locally by Chris Richard. Bet Your Life, a rallying sprinter who won a 5 1/2 furlong Canterbury allowance race by a half-length June 16, is also untested in route races.

His regular pilot Lori Keith makes the trek down I-35 to ride.

Oklahoma-breds Big Sugarush and Black Ocean, the field’s lone filly, have credentials as the pair have shown good stamina in recent outings.

Big Sugarush, under Mello, exhibited tactical speed when scoring by a length in a one-mile conditioned $6,250 claimer June 1. The Tim Martin trainee has drawn the rail and will tackle much tougher foes.

The Lynn-Chleborad-trained Black Ocean has kept good company here and did not disgrace herself when third in a June 20 allowance route, finishing 6 1/4 lengths behind Talkin Taylor. Israel Ocampo stays aboard.

The other entrants Demidofflight and Premeditated will have to improve significantly to threaten Rushin’ Rubietta.

The Iowa Stallion Stakes is scheduled for a post time of 9:37 p.m. Central.