04/30/2002 11:00PM

Sly Lady's prep win ends doubt

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CALGARY, Alberta - Sly Lady kept her undefeated record intact with a 4 1/2-length victory over Brass to Diamonds here on Sunday to assume the role of favorite for the May 12 Mount Royal Handicap.

The race was the first meeting between Alberta's two top juvenile fillies in 2001, and Round 1 went to Sly Lady, a daughter of Pole Position who has won all three of her career starts, for trainer Ron Grieves.

Any doubts about Sly Lady's readiness - she was shut down early last fall with a leg ailment - were erased with her win.

Jockey Real Simard positioned Sly Lady in fourth place early as the favored Fancy Prancer dueled with Code's Decree through a rapid quarter of 22.40 seconds over a course rated "good".

Simard had his mount on the outside in the run down the backstretch and asked for more approaching the quarter pole. Sly Lady responded with a sweeping move to open a clear advantage a furlong out and cruised home under mild urging. Her 1:11.60 clocking was the fastest of the day at the sprint distance.

Grieves said Sly Lady has "matured physically and mentally this spring."

A rematch with Brass to Diamonds, the province's champion juvenile filly of 2001, is anticipated in the $40,000 Mount Royal at the same distance.

Brass to Diamonds rallied for place money under Jaime Santos and should improve off her even effort.

- Timely Ruckus was made the 121-pound highweight for Saturday's Stampede Park Sprint Championship.

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