10/06/2004 11:00PM

Toronto invader vs. local queen


EDMONTON, Alberta - You don't see many horses ship from Woodbine to Northlands Park, but that's just what Kathern's Cat has done for the $40,000 Freedom of the City on Saturday.

Considering the winner's share of the Freedom of the City is just over $25,000, a payday smaller than for winning an allowance race in Toronto, the presence of Kathern's Cat in the one-mile race for 2-year-old fillies took local officials by surprise.

Kathern's Cat, a Kentucky-bred owned by Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey and trained by Reade Baker, will look for the first stakes win of her young career. Quincy Welch picks up the mount on Kathern's Cat, and the biggest question will be whether she can handle the sharp turns on the five-furlong track at Northlands.

Kathern's Cat is coming off a Woodbine maiden win over one mile on turf.

The likely favorite is Miss Venturous, a beautiful Florida-bred filly who has terrorized her peers at Northlands this summer.

Trained by Greg Tracy, Miss Venturous is undefeated in three starts and is coming off a dominating performance in the $50,000 Bird of Pay over 6 1/2 furlongs on Sept. 4. Leanne Painter retains the mount.

Also expected to challenge is Speedy Gone Sally, who won her first stakes in the Sturgeon River, which was restricted to Alberta-breds. Speedy Gone Sally will have the rail and, like Miss Venturous, she likes to be out front, which could set up an early speed duel.