04/30/2007 11:00PM

Six fillies, three colts in Kentucky BC Stakes

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Where have all the boys gone? Among a field of nine 2-year-olds in the $150,000 Kentucky Breeders' Cup Stakes Thursday at Churchill Downs, six are fillies and only three are colts, a highly unusual composition for a race open to both genders.

"I think people are starting to figure out that fillies are faster at this time of year than colts," said Wesley Ward, who will saddle one of the fillies, Yogi'ssplashofgold, in the Kentucky BC, a Grade 3 race run at five furlongs.

Ward, who at this early juncture of the season already has won five races with 2-year-olds, said he has been pointing Yogi'ssplashofgold to the Kentucky BC since Nov. 1.

Yogi'ssplashofgold won her debut April 6, opening day of the Keeneland spring meet.

"That's why I ran her so early at Keeneland," Ward said, "to give her as much time as I could before this."

Ward made a splash at Keeneland, sending out another 2-year-old filly, One Hot Wish, to a world record time for 4 1/2 furlongs - 48.87 seconds. Ward said he plans to run her in a California-bred stakes early in the Del Mar meet.

Yogi'ssplashofgold, with Rafael Bejarano riding again, will break from post 4 in the Kentucky BC. As often happens with 2-year-old winners, she showed hot speed in her first start, and she figures among the early flight again Thursday.

Another filly likely to flash speed is Rated Fiesty, one of two starters from the stable of Steve Asmussen. Rated Fiesty led all the way in her April 21 debut at Keeneland. Shaun Bridgmohan has the mount again.

Asmussen's other starter also is a filly: Wonderful Luck, who rallied from off the pace to win April 18 at Keeneland. Garrett Gomez will be back aboard.

Leading the males is the lone starter from the Todd Pletcher stable: Ready's Image, who figures among the favorites for this race. In his April 20 debut at Keeneland, the colt tracked the pace before unleashing a terrific stretch run, drawing off to win by 3 1/2 lengths as the even-money favorite.

The rest of the field is Little Springer, Cape of Storms, Alpha Tammy, Love Buzz, and Preachin Man.

Asmussen is shooting for a fifth straight victory in the Kentucky BC.