Contact: Graham Ross
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ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill.-Amerman Racing LLC's Happyanunoit, no disappointment as the even-money favorite in the Grade 1 Beverly Hills Handicap last time, looms a strong choice once again when she tops 10 fillies and mares named to Saturday's 11th running of the Grade 1 Beverly D. at Arlington International Racecourse.

The $500,000 sister race to the Grade 1 Arlington Million is restricted to fillies and mares three-years-old and upward and is contested at a mile and three-sixteenths over the world-renowned Arlington grass course.

In that last trip to the post July 2 at Hollywood Park, Happyanunoit prompted the early pace, gained the advantage along the inside for the stretch run and increased the margin the rest of the way while kept to pressure. The New Zealand-bred tallied by three lengths in that mile and a quarter Southern California outing.

In her start before the Beverly Hills Handicap, Happyanunoit was second, beaten a half, in the Grade 1 Gamely Breeders' Cup Handicap June 4, also at Hollywood. The five-year-old mare trained by Bobby Frankel, who conditioned Blue Vista, Inc.'s Possibly Perfect to win the 1995 Beverly D., was also second, beaten three-quarters of a length, in her previous effort April 23 in the Grade 2 Santa Barbara Handicap at Santa Anita. Brice Blanc will be in the irons.

Alain & Gerard Wertheimer's America, considered the primary European candidate for winning honors in the Beverly D., is trained by Criquette Head, who won the 1994 running with Maktoum Al Maktoum's Hatoof. Olivier Doleuze is up.

America, a daughter of 1991 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Champion Arazi, comes into the Beverly D. off a winning effort June 25 in the Group 2 Prix de Malleret at Longchamp. In her prior trip to the post, also at that course on the outskirts of Paris, America had finished sixth in the Group 1 Prix Saint-Alary May 21.

Strong competition for the top two could come from Gary A. Tanaka's Snow Polina, second, beaten a head in the Grade 2 New York Handicap July 15 at Belmont Park. At Gulfstream in April, Snow Polina captured the Grade 2 Black Helen Handicap by a length and three-quarters. Hall of Fame rider Jerry Bailey is aboard.

Sam-Son Farm's Only to You, a daughter of grass sire Lord At War, was second by a nose in the Grade 3 Dance Smartly Handicap at Woodbine July 9 and second by a nose in the Grade 3 Nassau before that June 3 at the Toronto oval. Before that, the four-year-old filly had posted back-to-back wins. Robby Albarado is slated for the saddle.

Others in the field are: Edward T. McGrath's Country Garden, a British-bred third in Hollywood's Estrapade last time, Corey Nakatani aboard; Team Valor's Elegant Ridge, an Irish-bred coming off a winning effort at Hollywood, Kent Desormeaux astride; Lewis Lakin's Alluring, an Irish-bred who was fifth in the Group 3 Meld Stakes at The Curragh July 29, Michael Kinane in the irons; and My Jo Lee Stable's Wild Heart Dancing, third by a neck in Arlington's Modesty Handicap, Mark Guidry up.

Completing the Beverly D. lineup are two supplementary nominations. Nancy A. Vanier's Wade For Me won the Grade 3 Modesty Handicap by a nose at last asking and will have Chris Emigh in the tack. Peter B. Scott's Diamond White, a durable British-bred mare has made 56 career starts and has Frankie Dettori named.

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Beverly D. Arlington Million Secretariat




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