October 28, 2023
Article courtesy of the DRF...
Mary Rampellini Oct 27, 202
Sterling Silver experienced fleeting success in graded stakes company in her most recent out, but the performance will make her a strong favorite Sunday, when she returns to racing with restricted rivals in the $150,000 Iroquois at Aqueduct.
The race is one of eight New York-bred stakes worth a cumulative $1.6 million on the annual Empire Classics Day card. The Iroquois, which is for fillies and mares over 6 1/2 furlongs, is the female counterpart to the $150,000 Hudson.
Sterling Silver was a four-length winner of the Grade 2 Gallant Bloom on Oct. 1 at Aqueduct. But the moment in which she nailed down her first graded stakes victory was short-lived. Sterling Silver was disqualified and placed second for interference in the stretch – but did earn a career-high Beyer Speed Figure of 98.
“I’d like to see her run the same race – and not get disqualified,” said trainer Tom Albertrani. “It really was disappointing. We have to move on to the next one.
“She’s been training very well. I mean, she’s probably training as well as she did before her last start. Hopefully, we get the same performance out of her.”
Sterling Silver raced over the Iroquois distance in the Gallant Bloom. She stalked the pace in fourth before moving to the fore in the stretch under Javier Castellano, who again has the mount for owner Mark Anderson.
“She likes to just hang back and make one big surge at the end like she did last time,” Albertrani said. “Hopefully, it sets up this time. We’ll see.”
Sterling Silver, a top New York-bred sprinter who leads the Iroquois field in earnings with $570,488, will break from post 5 in the eight-horse race Sunday.
“Going into her last race, she just looked the part,” Albertrani said. “We were very confident going into that race. I feel she’s going into this race just as well.”
The stakes winner Bank On Anna could show speed as a fresh horse making her first start since August, and the multiple stakes-placed Security Code could add to the tempo.
Cairo Sugar is cutting back in distance after winning a two-other-than allowance at a mile at Delaware Park. She showed speed in the race and is now seeking her second stakes win. Manny Franco has the mount on the daughter of Cairo Prince and the multiple Grade 1-winning mare Spun Sugar.
Funny How is returning to Aqueduct, where she has registered all five of her career wins. Funny How is a stakes winner and Grade 3 placed and brings a strong pedigree to the table. Her dam, Heavenly Humor, was a multiple stakes winner and has produced a five-time stakes winner in Funny Guy.