06/05/2008 11:00PM

Wet track new wrinkle for Victorina


AUBURN, Wash. - Victorina will have only six rivals when she makes her Emerald Downs debut in Sunday's $50,000 Washington State Legislators Handicap, a 6 1/2-furlong stakes for fillies and mares.

The Washington State Legislators had 15 nominees and was expected to draw a full field, but director of racing Bret Anderson hung up an allowance race as an extra that drew four potential contestants from the field. Four others, no doubt influenced by the presence of Victorina, will stay in their stalls.

Victorina, a 5-year-old daughter of Delaware Township trained by Greg Gilchrist, will be making her season debut under high weight of 122 pounds with Kevin Radke aboard. Last year she won 3 of 7 starts, including two stakes, and for her career she has won 9 of 17 outings, including the Grade 3 Azalea Stakes at Calder, for $475,033.

Victorina, who arrived from San Francisco at trainer Blaine Wright's barn before daybreak on Friday, may have to race over a wet track for the first time in her career. Unrelenting rain hit the Puget Sound area at midweek, and the weekend forecast calls for more. Wright's father, former trainer Richard Wright, informed Gilchrist of the weather forecast Friday and said Gilchrist was unconcerned.

"He said she loves the slop," said Wright.

Victorina figures to receive her sternest challenges from Private Dreams and Shampoo. Private Dreams, a 4-year-old daughter of Johannesberg from the barn of California trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, comes off an authoritative 5 3/4-length win in the six-furlong Hastings Park Handicap here May 18. That was the fourth win from seven career starts for Private Dreams, who also figures to make her first wet-track start on Sunday.

Shampoo, who won four stakes here last year as a 3-year-old, turned in a rare dull performance when sixth in the Hastings Park. Her only other off-the-board performance came in last year's Washington Oaks, in which she was fifth. Trainer Doris Harwood said her two subpar races had a common theme.

"They were both run over deep, heavy tracks," said Harwood. "If you look in the Form you'll see one track was sloppy and the other was fast, but what they had in common was that they were deep and tiring. She needs a surface she can get hold of. It can be wet, but it needs to have a firm bottom."