When Outstandingly won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Stakes as a 2 year old in 1984, it was necessary to put a large asterisk next to her name. Only the second-fastest horse that day, Outstandingly still picked up the winner's share of the purse after Fran's Valentine, who was first to the wire, was disqualified for staggering a couple of other runners at the head of the stretch.
After a puzzling 3-year-old season in which she won only one race, Outstandingly has earned her way back into another Breeders' Cup, the one on Nov. 1 at Santa Anita. If she wins this time, in the Distaff Stakes, Outstandingly will get more than an asterisk. Big capital letters would be appropriate, because the opposition starts with Lady's Secret, the stakes-winning toast of both coasts who has a mission to become only the fifth female to be voted Horse of the Year.
Only minutes after Gary Stevens rode Outstandingly to a 1 1/2-length win over Shywing Sunday in the $108,400 Las Palmas Handicap at Santa Anita, the name of Lady's Secret was mentioned to the jockey.
Stevens didn't want to think about the smallish gray daughter of Secretariat, at least not yet. "We all know about her," Stevens said. "And I'm not going to stand here and say we'll beat her."
Outstandingly defeated one of the country's best fillies in the Las Palmas, Hidden Light finishing last in the six-horse field as the 4-5 favorite. After the race, Hidden Light seemed to be favoring her left foreleg, and now there may be some question whether she'll even run in the Breeders' Cup Distaff. Trainer Charlie Whittingham, who felt that Hidden Light would be a capable challenger for Lady's Secret going 1 miles, has until noon today to make the first $10,000 payment that would make his filly eligible.
"It seemed like she stepped into a hole just turning into the backstretch," said Bill Shoemaker, who was riding Hidden Light. "She didn't run any good after that at all."
Actually, Hidden Light held the lead and remained in contention in the turn for home, but Shywing, who had been lurking on the outside all the while, passed her at the three-eighths pole. By then, Outstandingly, who had been a close third, began to pick up steam and she passed Shywing at the top of the stretch.
It was only the third non-winning performance in nine races for Hidden Light, the others being a seventh when she was thinking about boys in the Kentucky Oaks and a second to the zephyr Melair in the Princess Stakes at Hollywood Park in June.
The third betting choice in a crowd of 37,013, Outstandingly ran 1 1/8 miles on grass in 1:47 3/5 and paid $10.80, $6 and $6.20. With her fifth win and fourth stake in 11 starts this year, Outstandingly earned $63,400 for Louis and Patrice Wolfson, her owners and breeders, to approach the $1.3 million mark in purses. Outstandingly, out of the dam La Mesa, is by Exclusive Native, who sired Triple Crown champion Affirmed and filly Kentucky Derby winner Genuine Risk before his death in 1983.
Shywing paid $6 and $7.40, nosing out Justicara, whose show price was $5.80. Mountain Bear, who thrives on Santa Anita's turf course, would have been the second betting choice, but she was scratched from the Las Palmas Sunday morning because of an abscess on her right front foot.
Outstandingly will be one of at least six Breeders' Cup mounts for Stevens, who won his fourth stake of the meeting and his third in the last six racing days. Stevens' other rides on Nov. 1 are Precisionist in the Classic, Theatrical in the Turf, Palace Music in the Mile, Qualify in the Juvenile and Prankstress, an unbeaten Midwestern 2-year-old who'll run in the Juvenile Fillies.
Sun Master might even give the 23-year-old jockey a complete Breeders' Cup card, if his owner decides to pay the supplementary fee so that the third-place finisher in the Ancient Title Handicap can run in the $1 million Sprint Stakes.
The first $40,000 of a $120,000 fee is due by noon today.
In the Distaff, Outstandingly will at least be able to run in California, where all of her top races have come.
"I don't know what happened during her 3-year-old year, when she was in New York with Pancho Martin," trainer Laz Barrera said Sunday in the winner's circle. "Maybe she loves California, just like me. All I know is that right now she's like a razor blade, she's real sharp."
Because of Lady's Secret, Barrera will need a finely honed blade if Outstandingly is to get a big slice of the Breeders' Cup again.
Horse Racing Notes
Vernon Castle will not run in the Breeders' Cup. Herat will run, so will Mountain Bear, and John Fulton, who trains Flying Newsboy, would like to see his 2-year-old colt get the chance to compete. . . . Vernon Castle had a tough race Saturday, jockey Eddie Delahoussaye being forced to take up in the stretch as the favorite finished third in the Volante Handicap. . . . Mountain Bear will run in the Breeders' Cup Mile if trainer Darrell Vienna can't find a race for her before Nov. 1. With a tightener, she'd run in the Turf Stakes. . . . Flying Newsboy, who beat maidens by six lengths a week ago, will run in the Juvenile Stakes unless there's an overflow at the entry box. The field is limited to 14 starters, and Flying Newsboy has no credentials. "But there's nothing in the division that scares me, and I think this horse is going to get much better," Fulton said.