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Jan 18, 2013

3-year-olds on display in Lecomte Stakes


New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) - The first of two stakes for 3-year-olds on the way to the $1 million Louisiana Derby goes off on Saturday with nine entered in the $200,000 Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds Race Course.

Representing Canada in the mile stakes will be trainer Josie Carroll's Avie's Quality. Owned by Ivan Dalos, the 3-year-old colt will be ridden by Rosie Napravnik from post 6.

Avie's Quality is working on a two race win streak, including the Display Stakes at Woodbine on Dec. 1. He has two wins, a second and a third in four starts for $141,700.

"He's always shown himself to want to do something like this," said Carroll after winning the Display. "Certainly his pedigree has indicated this is what he would want to do."

Shadwell Stable's Hawaakom is coming off a maiden win at Fair Grounds on Dec. 15 and will break from post 5 on Saturday with Leandro Goncalves riding. The chestnut son of 2006 Belmont Stakes winner Jazil is trained by Danny Peitz.

"We'll be trying to figure out exactly where we are at with him," said Peitz. "We'll be waiting to see if he can take the next step forward by continuing his progress in this race Saturday."

Highly regarded Golden Soul will start from post 7 with Brian Hernandez Jr. returning to ride the chestnut colt. Trained by Dallas Stewart, Golden Soul won for the first time on Dec. 30 at Fair Grounds by 7 1/4-lengths as the 3-5 favorite versus four challengers. In his debut on Nov. 18 at Churchill Downs, the colt missed winning by a head. Golden Soul is owned by Charles Fipke.

Here is the field for the Lecomte in post position order: Malibu High, Miguel Mena; Heitai, Richard Eramia; Fear the Kitten, Shaun Bridgmohan; Oxbow, Jon Court; Hawaakom, Leandro Goncalves; Avie's Quality, Rosie Napravnik; Golden Soul, Brian Hernandez Jr.; Circle Unbroken, Mark Guidry and Ive Struck a Nerve, Kent Desormeaux.

The post-time will be approximately 5:55 p.m. (ET).

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