05/31/2012 12:35PM

Woodbine: Inglorious gives turf another try in Nassau

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ETOBICOKE, Ontario – It certainly wasn’t surprising when Inglorious took to the turf like a duck to water in her season opener at Keeneland. She will try a mile over Woodbine’s expansive course Saturday in the Grade 2, $300,000 Nassau Stakes.

Inglorious’s brilliant 2011 campaign nearly earned her Canadian Horse of the Year honors. She swept the La Lorgnette Stakes and Woodbine Oaks in the spring, and then beat the boys convincingly in the Queen’s Plate, which helped her to clinch champion 3-year-old filly honors.

Inglorious went to the sidelines after finishing a flat third in the Grade 3 Selene Stakes in September. Following a six-month break in April at Keeneland, she closed wide for second to Marketing Mix, in a one-mile allowance that read like a graded stakes.

Inglorious has an excellent grass pedigree on the female side. Her first two dams were both turf stakes winners, and her half-sister, Dixie Strike, took the Florida Oaks earlier this year on the Tampa turf.

Jockey Luis Contreras said Inglorious might be at her best on the grass.

“She was breezing really well on the turf down in Miami,” Contreras recalled. “She ran very well at Keeneland. I think she’s about the same, or a little bit better, on the turf than the Poly.”

Contreras said Inglorious trained forwardly since her comeback.

“She’s been doing really well,” said Contreras. “She needed that last race.”

Marketing Mix was the runner-up to Inglorious in the Sovereign Award voting for champion 3-year-old filly. After ending up third in the Woodbine Oaks and fourth in the Bison City Stakes, she romped in her first turf try here in the Wonder Where Stakes.

Marketing Mix has been campaigned as a turf specialist since the July 31 Wonder Where. She notched two graded stakes in the fall, and was second in the Grade 1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup at Keeneland.

After beating Inglorious in April, Marketing Mix finished a fading fourth as the favorite in the Grade 2 Churchill Distaff Turf Mile.

“She wasn’t running up to par,” said trainer Tom Proctor. “But it had rained earlier in the day, and she was down there on the rail, on the worst part of the track.”

Trainer Mark Casse entered the red-hot sprinter Roxy Gap and comebacker Indian Pond.

Roxy Gap is coming off back-to-back stakes scores, in the Grade 3 Whimsical and Grade 2 Hendrie. Her lone turf victory took place at 2 in the allowance prep for the Natalma Stakes.

Indian Pond was victorious in the Oct. 2 Carotene, a nine-furlong stakes for Ontario-breds which was moved from turf to the Polytrack. She won two turf sprints last summer, and has been idle since running third in the Nov. 5 Maple Leaf Stakes.