Evan, Matthew and Andrew Trommer’s Princess Warrior is undeniably talented, but the extent of her abilities is a question that could be answered Saturday in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Presented by Lane’s End (G1) at 1 1/8 miles on turf..
However, trainer Kenny McPeek might opt to scratch from the QE II in favor of the Oct. 19 Pin Oak Valley View (G3), another race for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/16 miles on grass. Entries for the Valley View will be taken the day after the QE II.
“We’ll make the decision on race day,” McPeek said Thursday morning. “She’s going to need her best race of her life to win this spot. I’ll always believe that if you can get black type with a filly – especially Grade 1 black type – then you should chase it. So we’re cautiously optimistic she’ll be competitive in the QE II.
“The Valley View might or might not be an easier spot for her,” he added. “It might end up with 12, 14 horses, so if that’s the case maybe we’re better off running in the eight-horse field in the QE II. It’s not a black-and-white call. It’s all gray.”
McPeek compares Princess Warrior to one of his many other superior fillies, Daddys Lil Darling, who like Princess Warrior was runner-up in the Darley Alicibiades (G1) as a 2-year-old. Daddys Lil Darling was subsequently the runner-up in last year’s QE II as part of her 20-race career in which she earned $1,335,305 and won five times.
Princess Warrior was second in the Dueling Grounds Oaks at Kentucky Downs on Sept. 12 in her most recent start. Prior to that, she was third in the Pucker Up (G3) at Arlington Park. Her overall record stands at 2-3-2 and $267,941 in 12 trips to the post.