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Final Round Is Tough


As a warmup to the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby Friday and Saturday, Churchill Downs will feature two stakes races today.

In the $100,000 Mamzelle, a field of 10 fillies and mares are scheduled to go five furlongs on the turf; six 3-year-old fillies will race in the $100,000 La Troienne at seven furlongs.

The one to beat in the La Troienne, a Grade III, might be Final Round. The daughter of Storm Cat had a troubled ride when second to Midnight Cry in the Forward Gal on March 14 at Churchill Downs. She is supposed to be ridden by Pat Day, but he was off his mounts Wednesday because of back spasms.

Final Round, who has won two of six and has never been worse than third, will be opposed by Real Bear, Lovely Sage, Just Bill Me, Fast Cookie and Crow Jane.

Repository, who won the Stravinsky on April 19 at Keeneland, is the likely favorite in the Mamzelle. She has won six of 17 on the grass.

The final race of the day at Churchill Downs is a steeplechase, the $100,000 Hard Scuffle at 2 1/16 miles. The Grade I attracted eight entrants, including three jumpers who won their last start.

Race of the day: Bayou The Moon, third in his first start of 2003, is the horse to beat in the seventh at Hollywood Park, a $58,000 optional claimer at 1 3/16 miles on the turf.

One for the road: Owner B.W. Hughes and trainer Ron Ellis are a longshot to win the Kentucky Derby Saturday with Atswhatimtalknabout, but they have a good chance in the fifth today at Churchill Downs. Carthage, a $440,000 purchase as a 2-year-old, may never be caught in the $42,000 allowance at seven furlongs.

Exotically speaking: Hollywood Park pick three using Taj and Soldiers Quest in the sixth, Bayou The Moon in the seventh and all in the eighth.

Winners: Previous day/meet total: 2/17. Money: Previous day/meet total: $7.60/$103.40. Total money bet: $104.

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