05/06/2011 11:42AM

Turf Paradise: Page Springs looks to close meet with bang in ATBA


PHOENIX – The curtain comes down Sunday on the long Turf Paradise meet as 2-year-olds who exited the Arizona Thoroughbred Breeders Association spring sale compete in the $25,000 ATBA Spring Sales Stakes. The five-furlong event drew a full field of 12 headed by dazzling 13 1/4-length debut winner Page Springs.

The 1 7/8-mile Hasta La Vista, the closing-day event for 55 consecutive meets, had to be scrapped due to lack of entries.

Page Springs, a 2-year-old filly by top Arizona sire Rocky Bar, went into her April 22 debut off some fast works and ran to them and then some. She blasted out of the gate and had a five-length lead at the first call of the 4 1/2-furlong race. She was eight lengths clear into the lane and powered home to win as the 1-2 favorite. She earned a 70 Beyer Speed Figure for that outing; the next best effort among her opposition Sunday comes from another debut winner, the filly Hot on Top, who earned a 33 Beyer when rallying to win her debut here about an hour earlier April 22.

Owned by the Sawyer Cattle Company and trained by Dan McFarlane, Page Springs figures an overwhelming favorite and is again to be ridden by Cassie Papineau.

Should Page Springs falter, the main beneficiaries would be Hot on Top; Call Me Good Lookn, who won his debut here also April 22; Hindu Kush, who was second to Call Me Good Lookn, beaten a half-length; and Az Ridge, who rallied for second behind Hot On Top in her April 22 debut.

Racing in Arizona moves to Yavapai Downs, about 1 1/2 hours north of Phoenix, in Prescott Valley, beginning May 28 and running through Sept. 6. Turf Paradise recommences for its lengthy 2011-2012 meet in the fall.