O'Connell Seeking 12th Sire Stakes Score
Wednesday, July 31, 2019

  HALLANDALE BEACH - Stonehedge LLC’s Lenzi’s Lucky Lady is slated to put her undefeated record on the line in Saturday’s $100,000 Desert Vixen division of the FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes at Gulfstream Park. The Desert Vixen, a six-furlong race for 2-year-old fillies sired by qualifying Florida stallions, will co-headline Saturday’s program with the $100,000 Dr. Fager, the six-furlong open division.

    Lenzi’s Lucky Lady prevailed following a race-long duel by a half-length while debuting at Gulfstream June 6. The daughter of With Distinction came right back to capture the June 28 Golden Isles Stakes, in which she rated just off the pace before drawing clear by 5 ¼ lengths.

    “She comes from a great family," trainer Kathleen O'Connell said. "I had the mother, I won stakes with her mother. She has a lot of class.”

    Jairo Rendon has the return mount aboard the homebred filly, whose dam, Blue Eyed Sweetie, was a multiple stakes-winner during her juvenile season.

    O’Connell is also scheduled to saddle Stonehedge Farm’s Marrens Marvel, a homebred daughter of With Distinction. Marren’s Marvel enters the Desert Vixen off a May 11 debut victory.

    “I love her," O'Connell said. "She’s matured. She’s gotten better and better every day.” Reylu Gutierrez is slated to ride Marrens Marvel for the first time Saturday.

    O’Connell, who has saddled 2,098 winners during an enduring career, has enjoyed long-standing success in the Sire Stakes, having saddled the winners of 11 series stakes, visiting the winner’s circle with such stars as Blazing Sword, Ivanavinalot and Well Defined, who all went on to graded stakes success.

    Gary Barber’s Two Sixty looms as a serious contender in the Desert Vixen off her recent debut victory at Gulfstream, in which she shook off pressure and drew away to a four-length victory on July 6. The daughter of Uncaptured, who was purchased for $260,000 at the 2019 OBS March sale, is trained by Mark Casse, who won the 2018 Desert Vixen with Capture Your Dream. Edgard Zayas has the mount.

    Alex and JoAnn Lieblong’s Ms Big Spring also enters the Desert Vixen off an eye-catching maiden score. The daughter of The Big Beast, who finished third in her debut, romped by 10 ½ lengths in front-running fashion on June 30. Trainer David Fawkes gave the call to Emisael Jaramillo.

    Arindel entered Raven and Sonar, both homebred daughters of their own stallion, Brethren, in the Desert Vixen. The Oscar Gonzalez-trained Raven finished second behind Lenzi’s Lucky Lady in the Golden Isles after winning her debut for a $25,000 claiming price. Juan Alvarado-trained Sonar, who broke her maiden on May 11 in her second career start, finished fifth after setting a pressured pace in the Golden Isles. Miguel Vasquez has the mount on Raven, while Rajiv Maragh has the call on Sonar.

    The field is rounded out by All Together Stable and Gary Grant’s Bahamian Girl, who finished third in the Golden Isles; John Liviakis’ Lady Joanna, who is coming off a debut victory for a $12,500 claiming price; and Our Sugar Bear Stable’s Sweetheart Deal, a 7 ½-length winner for a $50,000 tag.

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