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Burke Duo Set For Seasonal Debut

Published: May 17, 2021 2:45 pm ET

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The Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for three-year-old pacing fillies gets underway Wednesday (May 19) with three divisions at Harrah’s Philadelphia. Among those making seasonal debuts in the event are two stakes-winners from the stable of trainer Ron Burke: Blue Diamond Eyes and Continualou.

Blue Diamond Eyes won last year’s Three Diamonds Stakes and was both the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes and Kentucky Sire Stakes champion. Continualou closed her 2020 campaign with a 1:50.2 score in the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs that was only one-fifth of a second off the world record for a two-year-old pacing fillies on a five-eighths-mile track.

“I think with a better draw in the Breeders Crown, Blue Diamond Eyes would have had a shot at being the two-year-old filly of the year,” Burke said. “Continualou was unbelievable. She did great early and then hit a little bit of a rough patch. Then she just turned it around at the end of the year. Very rarely do you race a horse back into racing good. She turned in one of the better miles by our horses all year.”

Continualou had two wins and a second to start her campaign before going without a victory in seven races. She then closed the year with two wins in her final three starts. She won her Breeders Crown elimination before finishing fourth in the final, beaten by one-and-a-half lengths. Blue Diamond Eyes was sixth in the Breeders Crown final.

Blue Diamond Eyes is the 5-2 second choice on the morning line in the first PASS division. Grace Hill, who finished second to Blue Diamond Eyes in last year’s championship, is the 2-1 favourite for trainer "Nifty" Norman. She has a win in two starts this season.

Continualou is the 2-1 favourite in the second division, getting the nod over JK Alwaysbalady (5-2) and Notorious Pink (3-1).

The favourite in the third division is Always B First from the stable of trainer Robert Cleary. Winless in three starts last season, she is 3-for-5 in 2021, all in conditioned events. Linda Toscano’s Marsala Hanover is the 5-2 second choice.

Racing begins at 12:25 p.m. (EDT) Wednesday at Harrah’s Philadelphia.


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