04/27/2006 11:00PM

Stole One back for more


CALGARY, Alberta - Stole One launched the Vancouver invasion of Stampede Park last spring when she shipped in from Hastings to capture the M.R. Jenkins Memorial in wire-to-wire fashion under Chris Loseth.

The victory was the first of five stakes scores for shippers from British Columbia at the 2005 Stampede meeting, and Stole One, this time with Quincy Welch in the irons, seeks to defend her title in Sunday's renewal of the $50,000 M.R. Jenkins at six furlongs.

Stole One, who was never threatened as the lone speed in a field of six in last year's Jenkins, faces nine filly-and-mare rivals this time around, and Welch will seek to gain the lead from post 9.

Stu Simon trained Stole One last year after her arrival in the spring, and he again looks after the 5-year-old, who carries 119 pounds.

Spirit to Spare, another Hastings shipper in Sunday's feature, raced at Santa Anita over the winter and returned to Hastings to capture a $50,000 opening-day sprint stakes over a sloppy surface. Spirit to Spare drew post 6 and is the 122-pound highweight.

Felipe Valdez will fly in from Vancouver to ride Spirit to Spare, a Saskatchewan-bred who began her career on this circuit and was a private purchase by trainer Tom Longstaff on behalf of the Double Down Stable.

Local hopefuls looking to benefit from a speed duel between the two shippers include Wild Bender, Alberta's champion 3-year-old filly of 2005, who drew the outside post; Ice Girl, who figures to sit just off the pace; and the Robert Kingston-trained entry of To Dream Again, winner of the fillies and mares Sales Stakes here April 15, and Speedy Gone Sally, seventh and last in that race after a trouble-filled journey.

Leanne Painter authored the last-to-first move aboard To Dream Again in the Sales Stakes, and she will look to repeat that stretch-running strategy in the speed-laden field.