07/14/2008 11:00PM

Super Dixie hints she may be a special filly


AUBURN, Wash. – On the evidence of Sunday’s Angie C. Stakes at Emerald Downs, it appears that trainer Frank Lucarelli has a bunch of promising 2-year-old fillies in his barn – and that trainer Doris Harwood has one that could truly be special.

Lucarelli entered four horses in the six-furlong Angie C., but scratched most highly regarded of the quartet, Owhatablast. The other three ran second (All the Rage at 27-1), third (Light of a Star at 43-1), and fourth (She’s a Sweetie at 27-1) to complete a superfecta worth $3,240.

They all chased home the Harwood-trained Super Dixie, who turned back an eye-catching bid from Light of a Star entering the stretch and drew out to win by two lengths in 1:10.60.

It was the second impressive win in as many starts for Super Dixie, a well-bred daughter of dual Grade 1 winner Dixie Union and former Emerald Downs horse of the meeting Youcan’ttakeme who races for breeder Herman Sarkowsky.

Harwood already has been asked to compare Super Dixie to Smarty Deb, whom she trained to four straight wins last year – including a victory against males in the $100,000 Gottstein Futurity – before sending her out to a fifth-place finish in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.

“I’d say they are pretty comparable at this stage,” Harwood said. “They are both very intelligent fillies, and neither one has ever made any mistakes. Of course, Smarty Deb kept improving throughout her campaign. Super Dixie still has a long way to go to end up where Smarty Deb ended up.”

She is on pace, however, and Harwood doesn’t feel the distance that will be added to each of her next several starts will be an impediment.

“I don’t have a single doubt that she will go any distance we ask her to go,” she said. “Both her sire and her dam won stakes at 1 1/8 miles, and she relaxes beautifully. She’s not really even tight yet, because we turned her out for a while after her maiden win, but she will be tight before we ask her to go around two turns.”

Super Dixie, by the way, is a homebred through and through. Sarkowsky not only bred Super Dixie, but her sire and dam as well. His association with Super Dixie’s female family goes back even farther.

“I bred her mare’s mother, and also her mare’s mother’s mother,” said Sarkowsky. “I guess that makes four generations.”

Asked if the long association made Super Dixie’s Angie C. win especially fulfilling, Sarkowsky declined to differentiate.

“All the wins are special,” he said. “I’ve never had a bad one.”

Inhoc Signo Vinces right back Saturday?

Trainer Jessie Velasquez said there is a good chance that Inhoc Signo Vinces, an impressive winner against $40,000 maidens last Thursday, will run in Saturday’s $50,000 Premio Esmeralda for 2-year-old colts and geldings at six furlongs.

“It’s a little quick back, but he seems to have come out of his race well,” said Velasquez. “If he continues to do well, there is a better than fifty-fifty chance that he’ll run.”

Inhoc Signo Vinces sped five furlongs in 57.80 seconds over a track that was running significantly slower than usual to win by 6 1/2 lengths, giving the impression he could be any kind. He is a California-bred son of Malek, but he is eligible for the Northwest Race Series, according to Velasquez.

“Rick Beal bred him, and we bought him and another horse from Rick,” said the trainer. “Rick named him, so I don’t really know anything about his name. We call him Vincent.”

According to online sources, the name is Latin for “in this sign thou shalt conquer.” The phrase dates back to 312, when the Roman Emperor Constantine, who was a Christian, reported seeing it emblazoned under a cross in the sky on his way to battle. In Latin, it would be pronounced “in-hawk sig-no win-kays.”

Also believed to be pointing for the Premio Esmeralda are maiden special weight winners Alpakapaluza and Gallant Son, as well as impressive maiden claiming winners Enumerator, Free Action, and Snake Attack.

Chambers appeals suspension

Trainer Mike Chambers has appealed the 45-day suspension handed to him by the Emerald Downs stewards on Friday and will not begin serving that suspension unless the ruling is upheld by the Washington Horse Racing Commission.

Chambers was given the suspension after Your Highness Leia, who won the eighth race at Emerald on May 26, tested positive for the bronchial dilator clenbutorol.

According to presiding steward Doug Moore, it was the first medication violation for Chambers since 1993.

Moore said the WHRC probably will hear the trainer’s appeal at either its August or September meeting.