01/28/2010 12:00AM

Proctor has strong duo in F-M Turf

Churchill Downs/Reed Palmer Photography
Closeout is the likely favorite in Saturday's $300,000 Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Turf at Santa Anita. She is one of two Tom Proctor-trained Florida-bred mares in the race.

ARCADIA, Calif. - One of them has local experience, the other is on a winning streak. Trainer Tom Proctor has a formidable team of Florida-breds for Saturday's $300,000 Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Turf at Santa Anita.

Proctor starts Closeout, who was second in the Grade 2 Las Palmas Handicap here over 1 1/8 miles on turf in November over the same course and distance as the Filly and Mare Turf.

His other runner in the race for California-breds and Florida-breds is the improving Tight Precision, who won an allowance race at Churchill Downs in November and an optional claimer at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 6.

Closeout is expected to be favored in the field of eight. Owned by Glen Hill Farm, Closeout has drawn the rail and is seeking her first stakes win since the Grade 3 Locust Grove Handicap at Churchill Downs last July.

"Going two turns, I like the fence," Proctor said. "Sometimes, my jockeys don't."

In her last start, Closeout was second in an allowance race on a good turf course at Tampa Bay Downs on Jan. 3, finishing 2 3/4 lengths behind Lemonette, who was second in the Grade 3 Long Island Handicap at Aqueduct in November.

"It was soft turf, and I think firm turf here should help," Proctor said.

Tight Precision has placed in four stakes but has yet to win one. Owned by E.J. Sukley, Tight Precision returned from injury in October and has caught Proctor's eye with her last two wins.

"She won [the allowance races] pretty easily," Proctor said.

The Proctor-trained mares have the inside two posts and are the only shippers for the Filly and Mare Turf. The field comprises five California-breds and three Florida-breds.

The California-bred Bootleg Annie, winner of two turf stakes for statebreds last year, is expected to lead. Catsalot, a California-bred closer who was second in the California Cup Distance Handicap in October, needs a quick pace to be effective.

Catsalot's trainer, Leonard Powell, said: "The race is at home and on a track in which she finished second in a stakes. Why not try it?"

Century Park, a Florida-bred who was sired by California-based General Meeting, will be near the front. She won the Distance Handicap but has been beaten in her last two starts, both graded stakes.

The multiple stakes winners Pretty Unusual, Saucey Evening, and You Lift Me Up also start. Saucey Evening won the Starine Stakes at Hollywood Park last month, ending a five-race losing streak.

Pretty Unusual won the Grade 2 El Encino Stakes on the main track here in a 29-1 upset on Jan. 17, but was winless in two starts on turf last year.

"She wasn't interested in racing on the turf," trainer Barry Abrams said. "I'm running her here because I don't have to work her. It's a $300,000 experiment. If she doesn't run well, we'll go back to synthetics."