09/23/2009 11:00PM

Smart and Fancy back in Turf Amazon


In each of the last two runnings of the Turf Amazon Handicap, Philadelphia Park's top turf race for female sprinters, bettors have made Smart and Fancy the favorite.

They were rewarded when Smart and Fancy scored by 2 1/2 lengths in 2007, but disappointed when she got shuffled back early and had to settle for second at 9-5 last year.

Smart and Fancy figures to be a short price once again when she returns in Saturday's running of the $200,000 Turf Amazon, a five-furlong race that has also attracted Grade 3 winners Dubai Majesty and Queen Ofthe Catsle, plus a sharp uncoupled entry from New York trainer Linda Rice.

A 6-year-old mare trained by Tony Dutrow, who is winning at 33 percent with the 117 horses he has shipped into Philly Park this season, Smart and Fancy has gone off favored in 10 of her last 12 starts, dating back to August 2007. She was the beaten favorite in each of her last three starts, including three weeks ago at Saratoga, where she came up a neck shy of Canadian Ballet, one of the Rice-trained horses she will face again in the Turf Amazon.

In addition to Canadian Ballet, who was eighth in last year's Turf Amazon, Rice has entered Ahvee's Destiny, a 5-year-old who was narrowly beaten by Smart and Fancy and Canadian Ballet in a three-horse photo finish in The Very One at Pimlico in May.

Although Rice must be respected, she is 0 for 5 in Philly Park turf sprints the past five years, according to DRF's Formulator. That includes Canadian Ballet's flop at 9-2 in last year's Turf Amazon and Awakino Cat's eighth-place finish at 5-2 in last weekend's Turf Monster.

Dubai Majesty has just two starts on grass, including a win going a mile in a first-level optional $100,000 claimer at Calder in June 2008. She held the lead at the stretch call of the Grade 1 Madison over Keeneland's Polytrack in April and won the Grade 3 Winning Colors on dirt at Churchill in May.

Queen Ofthe Catsle returned from a 2 1/2-month layoff to win a minor stakes at Del Mar on Sept. 3. Her 6-for-10 record over the past two seasons includes a win in the Grade 3 Ken Maddy at Santa Anita.