Siena Farm's homebred Isabella Sings, a winner of the faster division of the July 26 Little Silver Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on the Monmouth Park turf, figures to add her voice to the outcome of the Boiling Springs Stakes (gr. IIIT). The $100,000 race for 3-year-old fillies "down the shore" drew a well-matched field of 10.
There are plenty of angles for the Boiling Springs: Isabella Sings has a win over the course for trainer Todd Pletcher; trainer Chad Brown has a trio in the line-up; trainer Graham Motion has a pair including import Jellicle Ball; and Pine Needles, trained by turf master Christophe Clement, was a close second to Isabella Sings as the favorite in the Little Silver.
Last July Isabella Sings was the first winner for her sire, Eskendereya . She is out of French stakes-placed mare Isobel Baillie, and is a half sister to Alaura Michele, winner of the 2011 P.G. Johnson Stakes and the 2012 Nani Rose Stakes, both turf events at Saratoga.
Isabella Sings took the second division of the Little Silver Stakes in 1:40.79, which was 0.86 seconds faster than the first division. The Buttonwood Group's Rachel Wall—trained by Motion—just missed by a nose in that division and is a Boiling Springs contender from the rail. The winner, Stormy Regatta, came back and won Saratoga Race Course's Riskaverse Stakes Aug. 27. Isabella Sings is 3-2-0 in eight career starts, all on the turf and sports a last-out Equibase Speed Figure of 107, the second highest in the cast.
Of Brown's trio, Strict Compliance appears the strongest on paper, having won the $150,000 Penn Oaks in May and getting to within 3 1/2 lengths of division standout Lady Eli in the Belmont Oaks Invitational Stakes (gr. I) on the Fourth of July. By Into Mischief , Strict Compliance was third last time out in the grade II Lake Placid Stakes at the Spa going the Boiling Springs trip, finishing ahead of a pair of her rivals at Monmouth. She sports back-to-back 109 Equibase numbers, tops in the field.
Michael Dubb, Bethlemen Stables, and Stuart Grant's The Elkstone Group's Bishop's Pond has won her last two for Brown in New York. She popped a 106 Equibase figure topping allowance foes at Saratoga July 24 going 1 3/16 miles on the grass. By the red-hot sire Curlin , she was a Fasig-Tipton Florida 2-year-old sales graduate for $250,000.
Motion's other runner, Jellicle Ball, placed in the group III Dubai Duty Free Fred Darling Stakes this spring in England and ran in the Qipco One Thousand Guineas (Eng-I). In her U.S. debut she was bottled up along the inside but rallied to finish sixth, beaten just a length, in the Lake George.
Jellicle Ball, an Irish-bred by Invincible Spirit, was a $473,252 Tattersalls sale yearling in 2013.
Pine Needles, by Giant's Causeway , has a 2-2-1 mark from six starts, but has been beaten less than a length in all three of her placings, which have come in stakes company. At Belmont in May she was just a half-length off of Lady Eli in the Wonder Again Stakes and was the 11-10 favorite against Isabella Sings.
Monmouth Park , Saturday, September 05, 2015, Race 10