Millionreasonswhy wins the 2011 Matron Stakes

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Millionreasonswhy wins the 2011 Matron Stakes

July 3, 2011

The distaff counterpart to the Futurity is the $150,000 Matron Stakes (G2) for 3-year-old fillies also sprinting 6 furlongs. Defy Gravity was the 8-5 favorite in the field of 6 off her maiden victory, over 2-1 second choice Hook It Up, a debut winner last out, and 7-2 third choice Say a Novena, winner of a maiden event in her second start.

Say a Novena battled for the early lead with Dancing Anna through fractions of 22.84 and 46.75.

Say a Novena led to mid-stretch through 5/8 in 59.28, but 7-1 Millionreasonswhy, last early, closed late, passing the pacesetter inside the 1/8 pole to win going away by 2 lengths in 1:12.68 over the fast track. It was another 2 1/4 lengths back to Dancing Anna third, while favorite Defy Gravity was 5th.
Results chart

Also on the card was the Futurity Stakes for the 2-year-old colts

Millionreasonswhy in the winner's circle

Winning trainer Ignacio Correas IV said, "She wants longer. We always thought she was good. We chose to run her at Colonial to give her some experience. We knew that she had talent. She had a really bad break but she won anyway. You cannot ask for a horse to do better than she did in her first start, so why not give her a shot. We'll look at Saratoga; she will take us there."

Millionreasonswhy in the post parade

Winning jockey John Velazquez said, "I broke out of there and they came out a little, but I pointed right to the inside and they came right back inside of me. I was kind of clipping heels so I said 'You know what, I'm going to take the safe way. I'm going to go to the outside.' And it happened that (Hook It Up) stopped, I went right to the clear where it was a safe ride, and I didn't have to check on her.

It actually worked out very well. I think she'll go further - very nice."

Second place finisher Say a Novena

7-2 third choice Say a Novena set the pace under jockey Mike Luzzi but could not contain the winner. The Edward Plesa Jr. trainee improved her record to 1 win, 1 second, and 0 thirds in 3 starts, earning $59,250 for owner Rick Stanley.

Third place finisher Dancing Anna

11-1 longest shot Dancing Anna pressed the pace under jockey Jose Betancourt but tired late to finish 3rd beaten 4 1/4 lengths. The daughter of Cuvee improved her record to 1 win, 1 second, and 1 third in 3 starts, earning $50,100 for owner-trainer John Robb.

Beaten favorite Defy Gravity

9-5 favorite Defy Gravity stalked the pace 3 wide under jockey Wesley Ho, then tired into the stretch and faded to finish 5th beaten 11 3/4 lengths. The Valora Testerman trainee has a record of 1 win and 1 third in 3 starts, earning $24,900 for owner Roland Reeley.

Tamarind Hall wins the 2011 Bed O'Roses Handicap

July 3, 2011

The last stakes race on Sunday was the $150,000 Bed o'Roses Handicap (G3) for older fillies and mares sprinting 7 furlongs on the main track. Vagrancy (G2) winner Hilda's Passion was sent off as the 2-5 favorite in the field of 7 over 5-1 Christine Daae, an allowance winner at Gulfstream last out, and 11-1 Curlina, runner-up in the Vagrancy.

Curlina battled for the lead with Hilda's Passion down the backstretch through fractions of 22.62 and 45.55 while being stalked by Tamarind Hall.

Entering the stretch, the pacesetters tired as Tamarind Hall inherited the lead and opened up by 6 in mid-stretch through 3/4 in 1:10.10. Kid Kate put in a late rally but Tamarind Hall cruised under the line 5 1/4 lengths in front in 1:23.82 over the fast track. It was another 3/4 length back to Spa City Princess third, while favorite Hilda's Passion was 6th.
Results chart

Also on the card was the Futurity Stakes for the 2-year-old colts

Tamarind Hall in the winner's circle

Winning jockey David Cohen said, "In the post parade, she was so strong, on game. Whatever I was, 15-1, she didn't give me that feeling; really a strong horse. I could have moved at any time. There was a nice gap between Javier and Ramon on the turn, and I kind of got her into that to get her part of the race and put her into position. When I asked her to go into that hole, she just responded where I didn't want to take anything away from her.

She went right through it, and opened by 3, 4, 5 lengths within jumps. I just let her be happy and let her do her thing."

Tamarind Hall in the paddock

Winning trainer Jeremiah Englehart said, "Ever since I got her back to Finger Lakes, she's just been a different horse from the winter. She's just been powerful. In her last race she ran a real big number, and she came out of it just as good. Everything she does, she does like it's a walk in the park. I was a little nervous after she broke in front and we took back and I didn't think we'd be able to make it up.

It looked like around the turn that David was still pretty confident. Once he asked her to go through the hole, she just exploded."

Third place finisher Spa City Princess

23-1 shot Kid Kate raced midpack 4th early under jockey Eddie Castro, then passed tired horses to get second beaten 5 1/4 lengths. The Chad Brown trainee improved her record to 5 wins, 3 seconds, and 3 thirds in 15 starts, earning $280,429 for owner-breeder Dell Ridge Farm.

Sixth place finisher and beaten favorite Hilda's Passion

26-1 longest shot Spa City Princess raced in last early under jockey Jorge Chavez, then rallied late to get third beaten 6 lengths. The Pat Kelly trainee improved her record to 5 wins, 0 seconds and 3 thirds in 14 starts, earning $206,559 for owner-breeder Adam Madkour.

2-5 favorite Hilda's Passion pressed the pace 3 wide under jockey Javier Castellano but tired on the turn to finish 6th beaten 12 1/4 lengths. The Todd Pletcher trainee has a record of 7 wins, 2 seconds, and 0 thirds in 13 starts, earning $589,493 for owners Starlight Racing and Charles Glasscock.

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