A trio of state-bred festivals highlighted weekend racing as post-Breeders' Cup excitement faded toward the long winter.
Dalvina came from last to win Sunday's $150,000 Long Island Handicap for fillies and mares, rallying four-wide into the stretch and drawing off at the end. Rarancella was second, 3 1/2 lengths back, and My Rachel finished third. Dalvina, a 3-year-old, British-bred filly by Grand Lodge, ran the 1 1/2 miles on "good" turf in 2:34.35. Cornelio Velasquez rode for trainer Edward Dunlop. The favorite, Royal Highness, saved ground and moved to challenge on the turn but then faded to finish sixth.
More Angels flew to the lead in Sunday's $75,000 Smartangle Stakes for fillies and mares and held on gamely to win by 3/4 length over Karakorum Starlet. Swap Fliparoo was third and the favorite, Stormy Kiss, was fourth. More Angels, a 4-year-old, California-bred daughter of Slew of Angels, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:09.72 under John Velazquez.
Sunday also was New York Stallion Series day at the Big A.
Spanky Fischbein, the heavy favorite, caught front-running Piquante Cat in the late going to win the $100,000 Great White Way Division for 2-year-old colts and geldings by 1/2 length in 1:10.16. John Velazquez rode the Hook and Ladder ridgling for Todd Pletcher.
Canadian Ballet came three-wide to the lead in the $100,000 Fifth Avenue Division for 2-year-old fillies and went on to win by 1/2 length over Sweet Bama Breeze. The odds-on fave, Noble Fire, faded to finish third. Canadian Ballet, a daughter of City Zip, finished in 1:11.14 under Alan Garcia.
Stunt Man got the best of five rivals in the stretch to win the $75,000 Thunder Rumble Division for colts and geldings by 1 length over Gold and Roses. The 3-year-old Western Expression gelding ran 7 furlongs on the fast main track in 1:22.41 with Javier Castellano aboard.
Factual Contender was, in fact, the odds-on favorite in the $75,000 Perfect Arc Division for fillies and mares and justified that status with a 3 3/4-length decision over Higher Incentive. The 6-year-old daughter of Thunder Puddles ran the 1 1/16 miles on "good" turf in 1:45.71 with Eibar Coa up for trainer Barclay Tagg.
Tamberino surged to a big advantage in the $75,000 Staten Island Division for fillies and mares and held on at the end to win by 3/4 length over Duchess of Rokeby. Cammy's Choice, the mutuel choice, was third. Tamberino, a 4-year-old daughter of Freud, ran the 7 furlongs on the fast track in 1:23.14 under Eibar Coa.
Red Zipper zipped past the pace-setters entering the stretch in the $75,000 Cormorant Division for colts and geldings and went on to win by 3 lengths over Pa Pa Da. Theconfidenceman was third, a head farther back. Red Zipper, a 4-year-old gelding by City Zip, got the 1 1/16 miles on the "good" turf course in 1:46.47 under Eibar Coa.
In Saturday's $150,000 Red Smith Handicap, Dave rallied from far back to win by 1 length over True Cause with Musketier third. Dave, a 6-year-old, New York-bred gelding by Ends Well, got the 1 3/8 miles on firm turf in 2:21.45. Joe Bravo applied the winning ride for trainer Barclay Tagg.
Also Saturday, Your Flame in Me led all the way to a 4 1/2-lengths victory in the $75,000 Lady Tak Stakes for 3-year-old fillies. Frisk Her was second and Half Time Crown third. Your Flame in Me, a Maryland-bred daughter of Boundary, ran 6 furlongs on a "good" main track in 1:10.76. Jose Caraballo rode.
Calder Race Course
In Saturday's Florida Million for state-breds:
High Resolve led from gate to wire as the heavy favorite in the $150,000 Joe O'Farrell Juvenile Fillies. Paint Me Red was second, 5 1/4 lengths back. High Resolve, a daughter of Put it Back, ran the 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:25.52 with Russell Baze riding.
He's Eze led virtually all the way to a 31-1 upset win in the $150,000 Jack Price Juvenile, beating fellow longshot Smooth Air by 2 1/4 lengths. The favorite, Wise Answer, was third. He's Eze, a son of Silver Deputy, finished in 1:24.32 under Jose Rivera II.
Wise Cookie got the lead turning for home in the $100,000 John Franks Juvenile Fillies Turf, then was all-out to hang on at the end, winning by a neck over Robbie's Gal. Awesome Dreamer finished third. Wise Cookie, a daughter of Wised Up, got the 1 1/16 miles on firm going in 1:43.27 with Eibar Coa riding.
Finallymadeit repulsed several challenges en route to a head victory in the $150,000 Jack Dudley Sprint Handicap. Storm in May just missed with a late run and Blue Pepsi Lodge faded after competing for the lead to finish third. Finallymadeit, a 3-year-old colt by Concerto, ran the 6 furlongs in 1:11.08 for jockey Eduardo Nunez.
Dynhocracy broke near the back of the pack in the $100,000 Arthur I. Appleton Juvenile Turf, ranged up three-wide to take the lead at the top of the stretch and then just held on to win by a nose over Sr. Henry. Big Al finished third, another head back. Dynhocracy, a gelded son of Adhocrcy, ran 1 1/16 miles on the green course in 1:42.46 under Ariel Smith.
Revved Up got revved up in the final furlong of the $150,000 Bonnie Heath Turf Cup and won by a nose over late-running Soldier's Dancer. Go Directlyto Jail was third. Revved Up, a 9-year-old Sultry Song gelding, ran the 9 furlongs on firm turf in 1:48.03 with Eibar Coa in the irons.
Annabill stalked the pace in the $200,000 Elmer Heubeck Distaff Handicap, then chased down pace-setting Bayou's Lassie in the final furlong, winning by 1/2 length. Peach Flambe finished third. Annabill, a 4-year-old Outflanker filly, ran 1 1/16 miles on the fast main track in 1:47.09 for jockey Edgar Prado. Milt Wolfson trains the filly.
And, in the $200,000 Carl G. Rose Classic, Electrify rallied to the lead along the rail in the stretch run and drew off, winning by 1 1/4 lengths over Imawildandcrazyguy. Summer Book finished third. Electrify, a 4-year-old gelding by Delaware Township, ran the 9 furlongs in 1:52.53. Elvis Trujillo had the mount for trainer Ed Plesa Jr.
Sunday was New Mexico Cup Day at the state's newest track.
Highland's Best got the lead in deep stretch and edged clear in the final strides to win the $183,175 Classic Sprint by 1 1/4 lengths over the favorite, Rocky Gulch, finishing in 1:11.
Some Ghost came from near-last to win the $190,245 Classic Championship by 2 1/4 lengths over Spelling Bee Jones while the favorite, Tanya's Beau, finished next to last. The 1 mile took 1.38 1/5.
Peppers Pride, the odds-on favorite, took charge in the stretch to win the $182,460 Filly and Mare Championship by 2 lengths over longshot Hang Glide, running 6 furlongs in 1:10 3/5.
ZZ Dome rallied five-wide to win the $153,890 Colts and Geldings Championship by 3/4 length over Blazing Rockstar. The 6 furlongs took 1:11 1/5.
Good Looker R F battled tooth and nail with Shezapirate before pulling out a neck victory in the $151,460 Fillies Stakes for 3-year-old distaffers. The favorite, Silver Expression, finished third.
Etoile de Dome drew clear in the stretch to post a 5 1/2-length, upset win in the $153,890 Juvenile fillies. One Bad Ghost was second and the favorite, Citi Girlfriend, was taken up in the stretch and vanned off.
Run Like Fire got the lead with a furlong left in the $153,891 Juvenile Colts and Geldings and won off by 2 3/4 lengths over Our Choice. The 6 furlongs went in 1:10.6.
In other weekend racing:
Bit of Whimsy had to swing five-wide around the leaders in Saturday's $150,000 Mrs. Revere Stakes for 3-year-old fillies but still got the job done, winning by 1/2 length over Ciao in a stirring drive. Cat Charmer finished third. Bit of Whimsy, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Distorted Humor, finished the 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.16. Javier Castellano rode for trainer Barclay Tagg.
Spring Awakening rallied from a pace-stalking position to win Sunday's $100,000 Moccasin Stakes for 2-year-old fillies by 2 lengths over Sindy Jacobson. The Golden Noodle was third. Spring Awakening, a Cal-bred daughter of In Excess, ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:21.38 under Garret Gomez. Mike Mitchell trains the filly.
Also Sunday, Meetingwithdestiny rallied smartly four-wide to finish third in a 1 1/16-mile maiden event on the grass. The Belong To Me colt, making his third start for Bongo Racing Stable, made his way to the lead in the lane but was bested by two noses. Standing High, a Stormy Atlantic colt sent postward at 53-1, led all the way and held on.
Dance to My Tune had them dancing to hers in Sunday's $150,000 (Canadian) Jammed Lovely Stakes for 3-year-old fillies. Under Constant Montpellier, the Ontario-bred daughter of Stravinsky sat behind the pace, came between rivals into the stretch to take the lead and won off by 2 lengths over Glitter Rox. You Will Love Me finished third. Dance to My Tune finished the 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:23.27.
Like A Gem fought all the way around to win Saturday's $175,000 (Canadian) Maple Leaf Stakes for fillies and mares by 1/2 length over I'm in Love. Tell It As It Is finished third. Like A Gem, a 4-year-old, Ontario-bred miss by Tactical Cat, ran the 1 1/4 miles on the all-weather track in 2:03.51 under Emma-Jayne Wilson. Like A Gem first had to duel Serenading into submission, then, once she got the lead, battled head-to-head with I'm in Love to preserve it. Daniel Vella trains the filly.
Bernie Blue led all the way to a comfortable, 3-lengths victory over M B Sea in Saturday's $125,000 Mountaineer Mile. Real Dandy was third. Bernie Blue, a 4-year-old, Florida-bred gelding by Bernstein, ran the mile in 1:41.50 under Deshawn Parker.
Golden Gate Fields
North Beach prompted the pace in Sunday's $75,000 Miss America Stakes for fillies and mares, took over at the top of the stretch and held on to win by 1 1/2 lengths over Round Trip Flight. Grat was third and Higher Love completed the order of finish. North Beach ran the 1 1/8 miles on the all-weather track in 1:52.03 under Luis Contrearas.
Saturday, Tissy Fit came from off the pace to win the $75,000 Tanforan Stakes by 1/2 length over Zappa, with Porfido third. Tissy Fit, a 5-year-old, Kentucky-bred gelding by Lasting Approval, ran 1 3/8 miles on yielding turf in 2:21.06 with Juan Ochoa in the irons.
Viva Pataca proved he is the best local runner for the Dec. 7 Hong Kong International Races with a convincing victory in Sunday's Cathay Pacific International Cup Trial. Remaining questions: How much better will he be in four weeks and which race will his owner, Stanley Ho Hung-sun and trainer John Moore choose on the big day? The 5-year-old son of Marju raced covered up in mid-pack through the early stages of Sunday's race, then easily took over in the stretch run to win by 1 length over Packing Winner, with Art Trader Third. Moore said he's not yet sure whether to start his charge in the HK$20 million Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup at 2,000 meters -- Sunday's distance -- or the HK$14 million Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase, at 2,400 meters. "The main thing for now is that in Viva Pataca we have a horse that will be in peaking on the day," Moore said. "He's made a mess of that field under a five-pound penalty and that was a strong line-up. I just want people to come out and support him next month because he's an international champion."