The first Illinois-bred stakes of the Arlington season is named for Illinois’s state flower and carries a purse of $50,000-added, a drop of $25,000 (minus added funds) from two years before. The Purple Violet is for three-year-old fillies bred in Illinois and marks the first state-bred stakes of the season at Arlington. Past winners of the Purple Violet Stakes include former Fairmount Park stakes namesakes All Sold Out (1982) and Bungalow (1990), Hawthorne stakes namesake Pretty Jenny (2005), graded stakes winner Rolling Sea (2006) and Grade One stakes winner La Tia (2012).
This preview keeps with the theme of three as our Nicolle Neulist has a preview of another stakes for the three-year-old set, the G3 Pennine Ridge on the turf at Belmont Park.
All races discussed are scheduled for Saturday June 4. Morning line odds were not available at original publish time. Edited June 2 to add morning lines and revise text.
Arlington International — Race 7 — Purple Violet Stakes — One mile (one turn) on polytrack — post time 4:27 pm CT
SILVER LODE won the Whitworth Debutante last fall at cross-town Hawthorne and is the selection. Though she was with the grain of the oval last time in Iowa, she still showed some punch in that open N1X at Prairie Meadows. A wide trip doomed her in try over the turf in New Orleans where she ran evenly. She rarely throws a bad one, goes second off the layoff, and stretches out to a one-turn mile after going six panels last time. Santo Sanjur has the call for Doug Matthews on the incumbent Illinois-bred champion two-year-old filly. Her style doesn’t do her favors over the Arlington polytrack, but with GO LADY JAY and DUNDALK BAY on the front end there should be enough pace for her to chase. The Sanjur/Matthews team in the last two months has worked together four times with three wins and another money finish. It appears PARTAY has become an “always a bridesmaid never a bride type” in her recent efforts. However PARTAY’s been matching her figure from her maiden win at Canterbury. Perhaps she’s just plateaued. In any case she does show a penchant of running to her figure. She exits the same N1X at Prairie Meadows that SILVER LODE was second in; she was third. Perhaps the speed that hangs around the longest is GO LADY JAY, who whistled on getaway day at Hawthorne last time out. That was over a sloppy track, and she makes the subtle cutback to a one-turn mile in the Purple Violet. She does need the lead and does need to be among the first flight, but GO LADY JAY – unlike DUNDALK BAY – has shown she carry her a speed a mile. Sometimes being the speed that hangs on late isn’t a bad thing over the Arlington polytrack.
#5 SILVER LODE (9/2)
#4 PARTAY (10/1)
#9 GO LADY JAY (10/1)
Longshot: We originally liked PEARL OF SILK here, but she’s running in the Maiden Special Weight earlier on the day instead of here. We’ll just rest up and get ready for Belmont Stakes Day.
For an alternative view of the Purple Violet Stakes, our own Nicolle Neulist has also analyzed this race. Their analysis can be found here.
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