06/26/2002 11:00PM

Showdown in Texas Stallion Stakes


Leo's Last Hurrahy and Rumbleinthejungle, who each won stakes in their last starts, meet for the first time Saturday in the colts and geldings division of the $122,500 Texas Stallion Stakes at Lone Star Park.

The 5 1/2- furlong race for 2-year-olds sired by stallions nominated to the series, is one of six restricted stakes to be run as part of the second annual Stars of Texas Day.

Leo's Last Hurrahy has not made a wrong move in three career starts. He won his maiden by two lengths April 28, then came back and won a trial race for the colts and geldings division of the $150,000 Texas Thoroughbred Association Sales Futurity, as well as the five-furlong finale June 8.

"He came out of his last race perfect," said trainer Bob Young, who likes how Leo's Last Hurrahy has handled himself between races. "I think he's getting much more solid. He's training better."

Buck Harris, who has been aboard Leo's Last Hurrahy in each of his starts, has the return call for owner Ken Murphy.

Rumbleinthejungle was an 11 1/2-length winner of the $55,000 Manor Downs Futurity in his last start May 11. Before that race, he finished a troubled second in a trial, which was his career debut. Rumbleinthejungle is a full brother to stakes winner The Gray Eagle.

"He's a big, strapping, good-looking gray colt," said C.W. "Bubba" Cascio, who trains Rumbleinthejungle for Scott Riddle. "I think he's a nice colt, and I think he'll turn out to be a real nice Texas-bred."

Cascio has given the mount to Weldon Cloninger Jr.

Other colts of note include Native Texan, an impressive maiden winner last out for owner Bill Clifton and trainer Bill Leach, and TTA Sales Futurity runner-up Action Tonight.

Parting, a 12-length maiden winner in her last start, is the one to beat in the $122,500 fillies division of the Texas Stallion Stakes. The chief threat to her in the 5 1/2-furlong race for 2-year-old could be Bedif, whose maiden win came in a trial race for the TTA Sales Futurity.

Coastalota meets Nanie's Dinner

Coastalota stretches back out around two turns for the $100,000 Allen Bogan Memorial. The one-mile race for fillies and mares bred in Texas also drew defending champ Nanie's Dinner, who is making her first start since September.

Coastalota won the $50,000 JEH Stallion Stakes over 6 1/2 furlongs in her last start May 27. The race was her third stakes win of the year, and since it she has flourished, according to trainer Randy Mayfield.

"To me, I think she's getting better," said Mayfield. "She's got it together right now. She's good all around."

Bobby Walker Jr., has the mount in the Allen Bogan for owner H.L. Southard.

Miss Ritz returns in Valor Farm

Miss Ritz, forced to miss the $150,000 Stonerside Stakes in May because she bruised a foot the morning of the race, returns to action in the $50,000 Valor Farm. The six-furlong race for 3-year-old fillies bred in Texas also drew stakes winners Sly Kona, Truly Sunlit and Dancing Dreams.

Miss Ritz, a multiple stakes winner at 2, started her 3-year-old season on a high note April 20 with a 1 3/4-length win in the $75,000 Wafare Farm Stakes at Lone Star. The win was an indication the filly is sitting on another strong year for trainer Bob Young, who manages Miss Ritz for owner Ken Murphy.

* Nuclear Assembly, who won a division of the TTA Sales Futurity last year, makes his 3-year-old debut in the $50,000 Harold Goodman Stakes, a six-furlong race for 3-year-old colts and geldings bred in Texas. Others in the race are stakes winners Front Nine, Balkan, Faxamillion, and impressive allowance winner Kristys Excellent.