Lady Dean and Island Charm each head a division of the $75,000-added Barbara Fritchie Handicap at Bowie today. The Fritchie, to be run at seven furlongs, will have 11 starters in the first section and 10 in the second.
Lady Dean, top-weighted at 119 pounds by racing secretary Larry Abbundi, will have as her main competition, Tina Tina Too, who finished a fast-closing second to The Wheel Turns in the Berlo Handicap at Aqueduct in her last start.
Lady Dean's trainer, Ron Alfano, said after his horse's final Fritchie prep, "Donnie Miller fits her and we'll have no excuses if she gets beat."
Of Island Charm, the favorite in the second half of the feature, trainer Steve DiMauro said, "She had no excuse when she got beat in Florida the other day. It was her first start of the year, though, and we have come more than a 1,000 miles for this one."
Jockey Gregg McCarron, successful on the Maryland circuit before leaving for New York, said of The Wheel Turns, "Island Charm and the other contenders may have my mare to beat. She's won three straght, including the Berlo and blew out sharply for me the other day."