After eking out victories in two springtime Grade 1s, Paulassilverlining will look for better luck than she had last year in Saratoga’s two graded stakes for older filly-and-mare sprinters. The first of these is Wednesday’s $200,000 Honorable Miss H. (G2), which has attracted a small but select field of five.
One of the top performers in the division last season, Paulassilverlining entered the 2016 Honorable Miss off back-to-back wins in the Distaff H. (G3) and Vagrancy H. (G3). However, she was run down by a neck to Haveyougoneaway in the Honorable Miss, and later ran fifth to the same rival in the Ballerina (G1).
Two lengths third to eventual champion Finest City in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) last November, Paulassilverlining was privately sold earlier this year to Juddmonte Farms, who placed the five-year-old daughter of Ghostzapper under the care of Chad Brown. For her new connections the bay is undefeated, winning the Madison (G1) at Keeneland and the Humana Distaff (G1) at Churchill Downs by a neck each time, the latter over Finest City.
By the Moon also enters the six-furlong Honorable Miss on a two-raced graded win streak, having captured the Vagrancy and Bed o’ Roses H. (G3) during the Belmont spring/summer meet. The Michelle Nevin-trained five-year-old is looking for her first stakes win at the Spa after running second in the 2014 Spinaway (G1), third in the 2015 Test (G1), and missing by a half length in last year’s Ballerina.
Finley’sluckycharm invades from Kentucky for trainer Bret Calhoun, who has seen the four-year-old by Twirling Candy win eight of 10. Runner-up in the La Brea (G1) in late December, she steps up in class after overpowering stakes rivals three times during the Churchill Downs meet, including comfortable wins in the Winning Colors (G3) and Chicago H. (G3).
The field is rounded out by multiple stakes winners Clothes Fall Off and Disco Chick, the latter a distant third in last year’s Honorable Miss.