Liam’s Map goes all the way in the Woodward
Liam’s Map went right to the lead and stayed there on Saturday as he cruised around the oval a much the best winner of the $600,000 Woodward Stakes at Saratoga. Sent off as the 6/5 favorite, Liam’s Map (BetPTC.com Top Selection) got to the lead and was unpressured through an opening half mile in 47.49 seconds. He turned for home and Bay of Plenty took a run at him but Liam’s Map and Javier Castellano kicked away. They opened up down the stretch scoring by four and a half lengths over Coach Inge (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) who ran on to finish in second. Wicked Strong (BetPTC.com Longshot) and Effinex (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) ran 3rd and 4th completing a $363 superfecta.
In the Grade 2 Glenns Falls Stakes it was White Rose who outbattled Eastern Belle down the lane to get the win. Sent off at odds of 9/1, White Rose (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) and Shawn Bridgmohan were fourth early on as long shot Maximova set the early fractions. Maximova was surrounded at the top of the lane and it was White Rose and Eastern Belle who spurted clear of the rest. But White Rose had just enough to hold off Eastern Belle and win by three quarters of a length.
Rachel’s Valentina took home the top honors in the Grade 1 Spinaway for two year olds, running her record to a perfect two for two. The daughter of Rachel Alexandra, Rachel’s Valentina (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) sat just off the pace early on and finally got through late as she exploded between horses and drew away to win by a length. World Approval (BetPTC.com Top Selection) went from last to first at 9/1 to win the Grade 3 Saranac. World Approval was almost ten lengths behind in the early going but steadily got closer down the backstretch under jockey Joel Rosario. Rosario demonstrated his excellent finishing ability as they reeled in Money Multiplier late to get up and win by a head.
Tourist scores a win in the More Than Ready Stakes at Kentucky Downs
Kentucky Downs opened up the season on Saturday with a great card featuring three big stakes events. In the $300,000 More Than Ready Stakes it was Tourist who went all the way on the lead. Sent off at odds of 2/1, Tourist and Florent Geroux opened up early on in the one mile event and by the time they got to the long uphill straightaway at Kentucky Downs, they were two and a half in front. Geroux kept to task and Tourist poured it on, winning by three and three quarter lengths at the wire ahead of race favorite Undrafted (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who ran second.
In the Kentucky Downs Juvenile it was Cajun Schill who rallied from well of the pace to get the win. Sent off at odds of 9/2, Cajun Schill (BetPTC.com Top Selection) was 8th early on as John Q. Public went out to set the early pace. John Q Public was hounded early on by At the Ready and as they came into the stretch, John Q Public was finally able to shake off that rival. But Cajun Schill had begun his rally and flew past in the final sixteenth to win by a length and three quarters over John Q. Public. The Juvenile Fillies saw the two far outside runners be 1-2 the entire way around the track as Ruthless Quality bested Mom’s Choice to get the win. Ruthless Quality and Florent Geroux stayed behind Mom’s Choice early on, but they made their move into the stretch and gradually wore that rival down, winning by a length at the wire.
Songbird dominates the Del Mar Debutante
Songbird and Pretty N Cool went at it right from the opening bell, but it was Songbird who had the last word as she crushed her rivals winning the Grade 1 Debutante. Sent off as the even money favorite, Songbird (BetPTC.com Top Selection) and Mike Smith battled early with Pretty N Cool (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) through a strong opening quarter and half mile, completing the latter in 44.84 seconds. But as they straightened away, Songbird began to draw clear and opened up to win by five and a half over Pretty N Cool at the wire.
The Del Mar Juvenile Turf saw Hollywood Don (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) score at 9/2. Hollywood Don closed from just off the pace and squared off with Hot Ore (BetPTC.com Top Selection) for the final furlong, prevailing by a length and a half in the end.
Tribal Drama takes home top prize in the Affirmed at Gulfstream
Tribal Drama had to hold off a stubborn long shot in the form of Abercom to get the win in the $300,000 Affirmed Stakes at Gulfstream Park. Sent off at odds of 3/1, Tribal Drama (BetPTC.com Top Selection) sat just off the pace set by race favorite Dream of Me. Eddie Castro and Tribal Drama made their move at the top of the lane and put a length on the field at the eighth pole. But Abercom at 17/1 emerged from out of the pack and made it close, but Tribal Drama prevailed by a neck.
In the $300,000 Susan’s Girl it was Ballet Diva (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) who rebounded after a loss last time to score wire to wire. She was able to hold off long shot Silent Prayer who ran a big race to finish second at 19/1.