After a commanding 5 1/2-length victory in her latest outing, Flexible Woman certainly appears to be on her game when she begins in Thursday's opening round of the Celias Counsel Series at Woodbine.
The John Bax trainee didn't disappoint her backers last start as Flexible Woman trotted to a 1:59.3 mile over a sloppy track for driver Steve Byron.
"She's come back really well this season,” Bax said. "That's the type of effort you want to see from a filly early in the season. Her first start was impressive also despite finishing second.”
The homebred daughter of Federal Flex didn't go though the auction ring as a yearling as Bax bought into the lass from breeder Jim Bullock's Glengate Farm.
Last season, the bay earned $29,736 from 10 starts, but the veteran conditioner wasn't satisfied with her campaign.
"I was pretty high on her as a baby but there was something bothering her last year,” he said. "She would fall apart at the end of a mile. Either something was pinching her or she needed to mature. We couldn't put a finger on it so we gave her time.”
Bax along with a team of six wintered in Florida, while his son, Matt, prepared Flexible Woman for her three-year-old season at their Peterborough farm.
"Matt trained her back this winter and did a fine job and the filly did it the right way,” said the veteran conditioner. "So far it's all systems go and we'll play it week by week with her. That's a nice series that she fits into (Celias Counsel) and that should get her well prepared for the summer.”
Bax remains hopeful that Flexible Woman can compete at the highest level in the provincial program against stablemate and O'Brien Award winner, Riveting Rosie.
"It wouldn't surprise me if she turned out to be a Gold filly. I'm optimistic about that,” Bax said. "She's got that attitude and fight in her. It's a fine line between ignorance and the will and fight to win. She's on the right side of the line.”
Bax also provided an update on Riveting Rosie, who captured the Peaceful Way final last year at Mohawk en route to racking up $468,613 in earnings.
"She's right where I want her to be,” he said. "I trained her in 2:06 in Florida before we shipped her home. I'll likely qualify her a few times and get her ready for the SBOA (Standardbred Breeders of Ontario Association). That will be her first stake of the year.” (WEG)