09/19/2013 12:31PM

Woodbine: Spring in the Air meets Leigh Court in La Lorgnette Stakes

Michael Burns
Spring in the Air captured the Fury Stakes in May for her only win in six starts this year.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – The race to become this year’s Canadian champion 3-year-old filly remains contentious, and Spring in the Air and Leigh Court will try to bolster their cases for divisional honors Saturday at Woodbine in the $125,000 La Lorgnette, a 1 1/16-mile stakes for 3-year-old fillies on Polytrack.

Spring in the Air was voted Canada’s champion 2-year-old filly last year on the strength of her victory in the Grade 1 Alcibiades. Her lone win in six starts this year came May 4 in the seven-furlong Fury Stakes. She went on to finish second in the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks, fourth in the 1 1/4-mile Queen’s Plate, and second in the 1 1/4-mile Wonder Where Stakes on grass.

“She’s been a trooper,” trainer Mark Casse said. “I’m beginning to think she may have some distance limitations. We’ll try her here, and I think this will be right up her alley.”

Gary Boulanger rode Spring in the Air in her last two outings, but she is being reunited with her former rider, Patrick Husbands, who recently returned from an injury. Boulanger retains the mount on the speedy Leigh Court, who won back-to-back stakes this summe – the seven-furlong Duchess on Polytrack and the one-mile Ontario Colleen on grass.

Boulanger is optimistic that Leigh Court will stay 1 1/16 miles, the distance at which she was a fading fifth after going too fast early with another rider aboard in the Grade 3 Selene Stakes in May.

“She’s an aggressive type,” Boulanger said. “She tries to do too much, too soon. With her, it’s about controlling her speed. She’s a very talented filly. If everything works out, we’re going to make them really run.”

Boulanger said he did not choose to ride Leigh Court over Spring in the Air.

“Obviously, Patrick was going to be back on Spring in the Air,” Boulanger said. “Patrick is [Casse’s] main rider. If Mark had said to me, ‘I’m going in there with Spring in the Air. Who do you want to ride?’ – it would have been a difficult decision to make. I don’t know if I could have taken off a filly who I’d won two stakes on. This way, there were no decisions to be made.”

Overheard has hit the board in each of her five stakes starts this year, including a closing third in the Selene. She cut back to a sprint when she took the June 9 Alywow Stakes, then finished a lapped-on second in the Grade 3 Ontario Colleen.

The Wayne Catalano-trained Bold Kitten ships in from Arlington, where she ran second in a division of the Hatoof Stakes on grass Aug. 17.