02/26/2009 12:00AM

Ultra Blend tests males

Email

ALBANY, Calif. - Trainer Steve Sherman is far from overconfident as he prepares to send out the 3-year-old filly Ultra Blend in a quest for her second straight stakes win Saturday, when she takes on 3-year-old males in the $50,000 King Glorious at Golden Gate Fields.

Ultra Blend has won four straight since running second in her debut and won the Tiburon Stakes by three lengths here on Jan. 10. But Sherman has some legitimate concerns heading into the six-furlong King Glorious, which is run on the Tapeta main track.

"I'm not a big fan of running fillies against boys at 3," he said. "It's quite different from running in shorter races as a 2-year-old."

Ultra Blend is not the only filly taking on males in this late addition to the Golden Gate stakes schedule. Shakenwithanolive, winner of a Jan.o9 allowance race after trailing Ultra Blend in her previous start, drew the outside post 6, one spot outside Ultra Blend.

It's not just the girl-against-boy thing that has Sherman concerned. Ultra Blend missed a work and three days of going to the track with a bruised foot, although Sherman said she looks 100 percent again.

The filly will also be without regular rider Roberto Gonzalez, currently serving a suspension. Sherman said he would use Leslie Mawing.

"I didn't know who to put on her, so I decided to go with a hot jock," he said. "She's really pretty easy to ride. Let her break and just sit where she's comfortable."

The four males are drawn inside the two fillies. Mr. Monkey Jones, unbeaten in two starts, drew the rail. Free Action, runner-up in the Jan. 1 Golden Bear Stakes here, starts from post 2. Stakes winners Charlie's Moment and Lordgivemealift drew posts 3 and 4.

Ultra Blend has good speed but does not need the lead. She will likely find herself sitting just off Lordgivemealift, who won a Hollywood Park six-furlong sprint last November in a sizzling 1:08.09. He has faded going longer at Santa Anita in his last two starts.

Lordgivemealift won a stakes at Boise last summer. Charlie's Moment won the 1 1/16-mile Gateway to Glory at Fairplex last year. He also finished third to Chocolate Candy in the Real Quiet at Hollywood Park in December and second in a photo to Backbackback-gone in the Jack Goodman in the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meet last fall.