09/03/2003 11:00PM

'Vicki' in career form


Soon after Eddie Kenneally assumed the training of Vicki Vallencourt, the filly finished eighth in an April 29 allowance race at Churchill Downs.

But since then, Vicki Vallencourt has been a rising star on the Kentucky circuit. In four subsequent starts for Kenneally, she has been in the money every time, including a 7 1/4-length romp in her latest outing, the Ellis Park Breeders' Cup.

Saturday, Vicki Vallencourt faces nine other fillies and mares in the $75,000 Weekend Delight Stakes, the first stakes of the fall meet at Turfway Park in Florence, Ky.

"I didn't know enough about the filly when I first got her, but she's been very consistent since then," said Kenneally, a 37-year-old Irish native who has been training in Kentucky for about seven years.

Vicki Vallencourt was a minor stakes winner at 2 before going off form. "She has that back class, and right now she's sound and mentally happy, which is probably why she's gotten so good," said Kenneally.

Vicki Vallencourt probably will be a solid favorite in the six-furlong Weekend Delight, with Shane Sellers to ride and her post position draw on the rail. Also, her off-the-pace running style appears to fit nicely with the expected pace of the race, considering that such speed types as Keiai Sakura, Emily Ring, Crow Jane, and several others also are entered.

Vicki Vallencourt, owned by Ricki and Ron Rashinski, is one of about 18 horses that Kenneally trains at Churchill. Two of her main challengers in the Weekend Delight also are based at Churchill, and both drew post positions just outside of her.

One is Colonial Glitter (post 2), a Glitterman filly who is making her first start in over four months. Now 4, Colonial Glitter was a 10 1/2-length winner of the Bourbonette Stakes at Turfway early in her 3-year-old season.

The other is For Rubies (post 3), who has been soundly beaten in her last two races after getting off to terrible starts. Before those races, For Rubies was sensational in winning a May 15 Churchill allowance and the June 14 Chicago Breeders' Cup at Arlington.

Another contender is Don't Countess Out, the defending champion of the Weekend Delight. She most recently finished third behind Vicki Vallencourt in the Ellis BC.

The Weekend Delight is the only stakes at the meet before the Kentucky Cup, the $825,000, five-race series to be run here next Saturday.