06/25/2008 12:00AM

Whisper to Me in off bad trip


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Whisper to Me had a frustrating trip in her last race, but she managed to salvage second in that $80,000 third-level allowance-optional claimer. She runs back at the same level over 1 1/16 miles on the grass in Friday's third race at Woodbine, and appears a force to be dealt with.

Whisper to Me captured the $75,450 Lyrique Stakes over 1 1/16 miles on the grass last summer at Louisiana Downs. After running fifth in the Oct. 20 Remington Park Oaks, she got the winter off, then was fourth here on the Polytrack after rejoining trainer Malcolm Pierce's string in April.

Last time out, when favored at a mile on the turf, Whisper to Me was blocked behind rivals in midstretch before closing for second behind Bear Dixiecat, who had everything her own way on the front end.

Patrick Husbands retains the mount on Whisper to Me.

Shawanaga and Southern California shipper Rushen Heat could link up on the early lead.

Shawanaga is racing beyond a sprint distance for the first time following a half-length defeat in a $100,000 optional claimer. The victorious Star Operator exited to finish fourth in the Tattling Stakes.

Shawanaga has worked a bullet twice on the Polytrack in recent weeks.

Rushen Heat, a full sister to Grade 1 stakes winner Golden Doc A, won allowance races on the grass at Hollywood in 2 of her last 3 starts. She earned an 88 Beyer Figure most recently for a win that came off a six-month absence.

Chantal Sutherland will ride Rushen Heat for trainer Barry Abrams, a combination that was 7 for 15 on the grass at the Santa Anita winter meeting.

Be Envied and Sudsy Baby finished third and fourth behind Whisper to Me June 6.

Be Envied is winless since she took a second-level allowance here in the fall of 2006. She has won twice on the grass, and finished third in two Polytrack stakes, including the 2007 Ontario Matron.

Sudsy Baby hasn't found the winner's circle since her second-level allowance win on the dirt at Woodbine two years ago. She has evolved into a turf specialist, although she has never won on that surface in seven starts.