09/24/2013 3:45PM

Presque Isle Downs: Primed for Passion seeks fifth straight win in HBPA Stakes

Coady Photography
Mystic City wins the $100,000 Windward Stakes by 1 1/4 lengths at Presque Isle Downs on June 30.

Primed for Passion will look for her fifth win in as many starts this year in the $100,000 HBPA Stakes for older fillies and mares Thursday evening at Presque Isle Downs. It is the final card of the 100-day Presque Isle meet, and the race will be run as the fifth of eight races.

The 3-year-old filly is trained by Hall of Famer Jonathan Sheppard, and all four of her wins this year have come at Presque Isle. After Sheppard took over her training, she won her maiden May 13 and then an entry-level allowance race June 23. On July 30, she won a second-level allowance.

In her most recent start Sept. 9, she won the prep for the HBPA by 6 1/2 lengths and earned a career-best 89 Beyer Speed Figure. In that race at one mile and 70 yards, the same distance as Thursday’s race, she was 18 lengths off the lead early. Sheppard said he thinks this race will set up the same way.

“There is plenty of speed in there, and it is a pretty good group of horses,” he said. “It should suit her well, and [jockey Mario Pino] knows her well and has been riding great.”

When asked why he thought she has gotten so good lately, Sheppard said, “Two things: I think she likes the surface there, and horses from her sire seem to do better as they get older.”

Sheppard plans to take Primed for Passion to Keeneland after this race.

“Her owners live there, and after this race, we will decide if she should stay running in stakes or allowance races. We have a lot of options with her.”

Mystic City will be one of the horses on or near the lead early. Trained by Anthony Ferraro, Mystic City finished third in the HBPA Stakes last season but won the one-mile, $100,000 Windward Stakes at Presque Isle in June. Most recently, she finished up the track in the Grade 2 Masters here, but that was at 6 1/2 furlongs. Pedro Rodriguez retains the mount.

Brays Secret in Fitz Dixon Memorial Juvenile

Brays Secret will try to remain perfect at Presque Isle in the $100,000 Fitz Dixon Jr. Memorial Juvenile Stakes in the seventh race. Trained by Tom Cooper, Brays Secret won at first asking Sept. 2 by seven lengths. In his most recent start Sept. 15, he pressed the pace and then dropped back five lengths off the lead before rallying in the stretch to win by a length in an optional claimer. Regular rider Gilberto Delgado retains the mount.

Ready for Action will be looking for his third consecutive local win for trainer Dale Capuano in the Dixon Memorial. After winning his maiden Aug. 15 in his third attempt, Ready for Action won a six-furlong entry-level allowance in come-from-behind fashion, suggesting the added ground in this 6 1/2-furlong race won’t be a problem. Jose Garcia, aboard for both victories, will ride.

Tuscan Getaway, under trainer Ricky Griffith, has only one win but a pair of thirds in stakes company in his last two outings. On July 20, he finished third in the $140,000 Colin going six furlongs, and on Aug. 24, he finished third in the $125,000 Swynford, both at Woodbine. Scott Spieth will ride for the first time.

The race drew a field of eight.