06/21/2007 11:00PM

Valid Lil appears bound for stakes


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Valid Lil appears to be a stakes-winning sprinter in the making. She has won her two starts by a combined margin of 18 1/2 lengths, a record that makes her look imposing Sunday in the featured fifth race at Lone Star Park. Valid Lil's record also suggests it won't be long before she turns up in some statebred stakes in her native Texas.

"I would say she could show up there, and possibly some open stakes," said Bret Calhoun, who trains Valid Lil for Circustown Stables.

Calhoun said the first order of business, however, comes on Sunday. Valid Lil will start as a strong favorite in the fifth, a second-level allowance for fillies and mares bred in Texas. The race will be run at 5 1/2 furlongs, the distance at which Valid Lil won her debut by nine lengths in a maiden special weight for Texas-breds on May 6.

Valid Lil returned to win a first-level allowance for Texas-bred fillies and mares by 9 1/2 lengths May 25. She earned a Beyer Figure of 87.

"Right now, she looks like she's a stakes-caliber filly," said Calhoun, the leading trainer at Lone Star. "And we're just going to kind of hopefully march through her conditions and then look for some stakes for her later on."

Valid Lil, who is 4, is bred for stakes success. She is a daughter of Valid Expectations, a Grade 3 winner and a perennial leading sire in Texas. Her dam is Western Lil, who won four stakes during her career and was 6 for 8 overall.

"Valid Lil, she's a half-sister to Be a Resident," noted Calhoun, who also trains that multiple-stakes-winning colt, an earner of $147,114.

Valid Lil drew post 2 for Sunday.

"She'll definitely be forwardly placed," said Calhoun.

Ramsey Zimmerman, the leading rider at Lone Star, has the mount.

Strong City points for Alysheba

Strong City, who won a first-level allowance here by 7 3/4 lengths, is being pointed for the $100,000 Alysheba Breeders' Cup, said his trainer, Donnie Von Hemel. The one-mile race for 3-year-olds is to be run here June 30.

A day prior, Von Hemel will be running Going Ballistic in the $250,000 Iowa Derby at Prairie Meadows. And another of his 3-year-olds, Slew by Slew, was to run Saturday at Louisiana Downs in the $50,000 Seeking the Gold.

"I had to split my 3-year-olds up, [between] Louisiana, Texas, and Iowa," said Von Hemel. "I just hope I sent them to the right places."

Strong City was a 13 1/2-length maiden winner at Remington last November. The allowance win here came at one mile on June 3.

Von Hemel had another notable 3-year-old winner here Thursday night in maiden special weight victor Western World, who won at seven furlongs. Western World is out of the mare Graceful Minister, a stakes winner of $446,455. Von Hemel also won a first-level allowance Thursday with the 4-year-old Gyrovagi, a half-brother to Grade 3 winner Bedanken.

Dill or No Dill may try Silver Spur

Dill or No Dill, who dominated a promising field of 2-year-old fillies in a maiden special weight race here June 16, could move into stakes company for her next start, said her trainer, Joe Petalino. He said she is under consideration for the $70,000 Silver Spur Breeders' Cup at Lone Star on July 28.

Dill or No Dill showed good speed throughout her debut, winning the maiden race by 4 1/4 lengths. She is a daughter of Evansville Slew.