(National Steeplechase Association)
Clarke Ohrstrom’s Kisser N Run, the reigning Life’s Illusion Filly and Mare champion, heads a strong field of female competitors for the $30,000 Georgia Cup, the featured stakes race of the 49th annual Atlanta Steeplechase on Saturday, April 19. First post time at Kingston Downs is 1:30 p.m.
|Teddy Alexander's Kisser N Run (left - Paddy Young) holds off Mede Cahaba Stable LLC's Class Launch (Richard Boucher) (Susan M. Carter Photo)|
Kisser N Run won her two major starts in the fall, the Peapack Stakes at Far Hills, N.J., and the Crown Royal Stakes at the Steeplechase at Callaway in Pine Mountain, Ga., to secure her title.
Trainer Richard Valentine named Robbie Walsh to ride Kisser N Run.
Jack Fisher, currently sharing the champion trainer title with Racing Hall of Fame member Jonathan Sheppard, entered Arcadia Stable’s pairing of Take Her Tothe Top and Opera Heroine. Take Her Tothe Top won last summer’s Mrs. Ogden Phipps Stakes, a race that Opera Heroine had won in 2011.
Last fall, Opera Heroine finished second to Kisser N Run in the Peapack, and Take Her Tothe Top took the second spot in the Crown Royal. Jeff Murphy will ride Opera Heroine, and the mount on Take Her Tothe Top is open.
Sheppard will be represented by Sully’s Approach, owned by Bill Pape. A runaway maiden winner, she finished fourth in the Crown Royal. Bernie Dalton has the mount.
Racing Hall of Fame trainer Janet Elliot entered her Hiwasee Gem, who ran a gem of a race in winning a Carolina Cup maiden hurdle for fillies and mares by more than 20 lengths. Harry Haynes again will be in the saddle.
Irvin S. Naylor, a three-time champion owner, nominated Bittersweetheart and Cordillera. Trained by Leslie Young, Bittersweetheart was third in the 2013 Crown Royal. Cordillera, now trained by Cyril Murphy, is coming back after missing the 2013 season.