07/14/2010 6:28PM

Somme shoots for third straight


ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Somme will put her two-race win streak on the line Saturday in the $150,000 Ontario Damsel Stakes. She figures to be a very short price in the one-mile turf route, which was run over 6 /12 furlongs at Woodbine from 1979 to 2009.

Somme, a daughter of Theatrical, failed to find the mark in three maiden special races on Polytrack, before trainer Josie Carroll put her on the grass May 23. She overcame traffic troubles then to win her maiden by going a mile in 1:35.59, a time that translated into a Beyer Speed Figure of 76.

Somme shortened up to 6 1/2 furlongs on the grass June 13 in the Alywow Stakes, in which she came inside from off the pace to win by a half-length, earning an 86 Beyer Figure under Patrick Husbands.

“We anticipated a good run from her,” said Carroll. “I didn’t think the cutback was going to be a big concern, because there was enough speed in front of her for her to come running at.”

Carroll said Somme had no problem splitting rivals near the sixteenth pole in the Alywow.

“It was very tight,” said Carroll. “It was a very small hole, but I don’t think that Patrick was worried at any time, because she’s just a very brave kind of horse. He had a lot of confidence in her.”

The Ontario Damsel lured just four other Ontario-bred 3-year-old fillies, most notably Barracks Road.

Barracks Road showed some promise in four outings last year, but she ran a hole in the wind when she won her maiden in her season opener May 26. She scored by 3 1/4 lengths in that six-furlong turf dash, and registered an 86 Beyer.

Barracks Road appeared to bounce in the Alywow, in which she faded to sixth after a three-wide stalking trip. Corey Fraser retains the mount for trainer Mark Casse.

Amiable Grace made both of her starts on Polytrack, and she graduated in a seven-furlong maiden special that was taken off the turf June 26. Jono Jones will ride her for trainer Mike Doyle.

Trainer Roger Attfield, who has won the Ontario Damsel twice, will saddle the maiden Thislilsoulofmine, who was a troubled sixth when she debuted on the grass May 23.

Tennessee Lamb was a fast-closing fifth the only time that she saw action in a Polytrack sprint in June of 2009.