Trainer Bob Baffert's Fiftyshadesofhay heads a six-horse field for Sunday's one-mile, $250,000 Ruffian Stakes at Belmont Park. The 4-year-old filly will break from the far outside post with John Velazquez riding.
Owned by Mike Pegram, Fiftyshadesofhay has won four of 15 career starts for $796,547 and is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the race for fillies and mares. Last year she won the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico and the Iowa Oaks at Prairie Meadows. This year in two starts at Santa Anita, the filly was fourth in the La Canada and sixth in the Santa Margarita.
The 5-2 second pick in the program is 5-year-old mare Grace Hall, trained by Bill Mott for Alpha Delta Stables. Grace Hall will break from post 5 with Joel Rosario in the saddle.
Grace Hall will be making her first start in 13 months. The mare last raced on April 12, 2013 when she was seventh in the Apple Blossom Handicap as the even- money favorite at Oaklawn Park.
"We've had her since last October," said Mott. "She'd been laid up for a long time and it just took us awhile to get her ready. With any horse that's been off for over a year you're not positive how they're going to run, but I'm hoping to see a good, positive effort from her."
The 5-year-old posted victories two years ago in the Gulfstream Park Oaks, Delaware Oaks and Indiana Oaks. She has earned $1,416,360 with six wins in 13 starts.
Here is the Ruffian field in post position order: Six Queens, Luis Saez, 4-1; My Wandy's Girl, Rajiv Maragh, 7-2; Parc Monceau, Jose Ortiz, 20-1; Toasting, Javier Castellano, 8-1; Grace Hall, Joel Rosario, 5-2 and Fiftyshadesofhay, John Velazquez, 2-1.
The Ruffian has an approximate post time of 5:13 p.m. ET.