Essential Quality, Gamine, Jackie's Warrior, Letruska win on Saratoga's big day

By Robert Kieckhefer, UPI Racing Writer
Essential Quality wins the Travers at Saratoga, setting up his tilt at the Breeders' Cup Classic. Photo courtesy of New York Racing Association
Essential Quality wins the Travers at Saratoga, setting up his tilt at the Breeders' Cup Classic. Photo courtesy of New York Racing Association

Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Essential Quality, Gamine, Jackie's Warrior and Letruska, favorites and potentially champions all, took turns wowing the Saratoga fans on Travers weekend with even more winners earning spots in November's Breeders' Cup races.

With just more than two months to go before the big weekend, yet another Breeders' Cup slot was allocated at the host site, Del Mar. That seaside track also saw Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit back in action for the first time since he finished third in the Preakness.


And while attention was riveted on the glamor venues in New York and Southern California, beleaguered Illinois racing got a shot of cheer Saturday night as the St. Louis Derby returned from a long hiatus.

Meanwhile, if you can't beat 'em, bite 'em. What? See the "Sprint" section for an explanation.

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They keep throwing talented rivals at Essential Quality, and he keeps doing just enough to turn them back.


Saturday, it was Midnight Bourbon who took the lead in the $1.25 million Grade I Travers -- the "Midsummer Derby" -- at Saratoga. Essential Quality raced in second behind that one, moved to challenge with a furlong and a half left and battled it out, winning by a neck. It was 5 more lengths to Miles D in third.

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Essential Quality, a Godolphin home bred colt by Tapit, finished 1 1/4 mile in 2:01.96 and ran his record to eight wins from nine starts while undoubtedly adding to trainer Brad Cox's ulcer collection.

"I was a little worried up the backside ... with softer fractions," Cox admitted. "He's a tremendous horse. He's a champion, and he ran like one today."

Cox said he and Godolphin's Jimmy Bell "were observing him after the race, and it looked like he never ran. He wasn't exhausted or fatigued. He's just a tremendous horse."

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He said no decision has been made whether the colt will have another start before the Breeders' Cup Classic.

Despite his fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, victories in the Belmont Stakes, Jim Dandy and Travers already set Essential Quality up for year-end honors, at least in the 3-year-old division. He won 2-year-old honors last season.


On Sunday at Del Mar, Medina Spirit returned from a three-month layoff to score a front-running victory in the $100,000 Shared Belief Stakes.

The Protonico colt, whose Louisville victory is under review after a drug positive, turned back one major challenge and won by 1 1/4 lengths over fellow Triple Crown refugee and Santa Anita Derby winner Rock Your World.

It was another 2 1/4 lengths to Stilleto Boy in third as Medina Spirit finished the 1 mile on a fast track in 1:37.29 with John Velazquez up.

"I did not have any intention of running him in this race until a couple weeks ago," said Medina Spirit's trainer, Bob Baffert. "I started thinking about it, figuring it couldn't come up that tough.

"Then [my son)] Bode said, 'You know Rock Your World's running there?' There's still some good racing for him out there. We're waiting for the process to happen."

Art Collector chased down pacesetting Sleepy Eyes Todd in the stretch run to win Friday night's $800,000 Grade III Charles Town Classic by 1 1/2 lengths. It was another 4 lengths to Rushie in third.

Art Collector, a Bernardini colt trained by Bill Mott for owner-breeder Bruce Lunsford, ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:49.39. Luis Saez had the ride.


Art Collector won last year's Blue Grass at Keeneland, but finished the year with an eighth-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile. He has worked his way back from a layoff and now has back-to-back wins.

Also in the Classic Division:

The downstate Illinois track formerly known as Fairmount Park, rejuvenated by a sports-betting partnership and planned casino, dipped its toe back into big-time racing Saturday night with the $250,000 St. Louis Derby Sponsored by Fanduel.

The track and St. Louis-area racing fans were rewarded with some nice horses, top-shelf riders and a stirring stretch duel that found Flash of Mischief get by pacesetting Irish Unity to win by 1 length with the favorite, Gagetown,only a head farther back.

Flash of Mischief, an Into Mischief colt trained by Karl Broberg, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:46.59. He was second in the Iowa Derby two starts back and fourth in his previous start, the Grade II Amsterdam at Saratoga.

No one's going to mistake the race for the Travers but it was a nice start on the road back for the track and for long-suffering local horsemen.

Americanrevolution took charge in the final furlong of Friday's $250,000 Albany Stakes for state-bred 3-year-olds, drawing off to win by 5 lengths as the odds-on favorite. The Constitution colt, trained by Todd Pletcher, got 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:49.94 with Luis Saez up.


Owned by China Horse Club and WinStar Farm, Americanrevolution is one to watch going forward. Pletcher said the $300,000 Empire Classic for state-breds at Belmont Park is the logical next step but added, "I think this horse has the ability to win an open stakes."


Letruska did what Letruska does in Saturday's $600,000 Grade I Personal Ensign at Saratoga, leading from the early stages and running on to win by 1/2 length, holding off a trio of pursuers in the closing strides.

Bonny South was second, a head in front of Royal Flag, who was another head to the good of Dunbar Road. The 2020 Preakness winner, Swiss Skydiver, continued her malaise, finishing another 7 3/4 lengths back in fifth.

Letruska, a 5-year-old Super Saver mare, ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:49.15 with Irad Ortiz Jr. in the irons. Letruska now has four wins in a row and six from her last seven starts with all of those efforts coming in graded stakes.

"This a special horse, said Letruska's trainer, Fausto Gutierrez. "To have this speed and to be able to run long distances, and to have the big heart, is special. Not for nothing, I think this is one of the best horses in the country.


"We are planning to go to Keeneland (for the $500,000 Grade I Juddmonte Spinster on Oct. 10, and then travel to the Breeders' Cup."

On a night when speed was doing well, R Adios Jersey got right to the front in Friday's $400,000 Grade III Charles Town Oaks and rolled home first by 3 1/4 lengths. Pauline's Pearl and Allworthy filled the trifecta with the favorite, Caramel Swirl, fourth.

R Adios Jersey, a Florida-bred filly by Adios Charlie, ran 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:24.37 with Paco Lopez aboard for trainer Georgina Baxter. She remains undefeated after five starts with the first four run in Florida.

Filly & Mare Sprint

Following a theme set by Letruska, Gamine did what Gamine does in Saturday's $500,000 Grade I Ketel One Ballerina Handicap at Saratoga.

Blazing away from the opening bell, the 4-year-old Into Mischief filly won by 1 3/4 length, earning a return trip to the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, which she won last year. Lake Avenue ran well to finish second, 1 1/4 lengths in front of Ce Ce.

With John Velazquez in the irons, Gamine finished 7 furlongs in a snappy 1:21.61. It was her ninth win from 10 starts and her fifth in a row.


"She just kind of waited and then, by the quarter pole, I asked her for what she needed to do, and she got it done," Velazquez said.

Winning trainer Bob Baffert did not attend, but owner Michael Lund Petersen said about Gamine's earning a "Win and You're In" spot to the Breeders' Cup at Del Mar, "That's the plan. It's going to be at Del Mar and Southern California is home for her, so that's good."

Sprint / Dirt Mile

The analysts generally figured Saturday's $600,000 Grade I Forego Stakes at Saratoga as a tossup. The punters got it right, making Yaupon the 2-1 favorite off a victory in his last start, the Lite the Fuse Stakes at Pimlico.

Obligingly, the 4-year-old Uncle Mo colt seized the lead in the stretch, survived Firenze Fire's late bid and won by a head over that rival. He also survived Firenze Fire's repeated attempts to bite a chunk out of his cheek during the stretch run, a rather impolite moment caught vividly on the national telecast.

Despite it all, Yaupon got 7 furlongs in 1:21.74 with Ricardo Santana Jr. in the irons. He now is 6-for-8 with the only losses coming in last year's Breeders' Cup Sprint and the Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen.


"I will watch that replay many times in my future," winning trainer Steve Asmussen said of the savaging in the stretch.

"For that to happen in a Grade I at Saratoga with two horses on the lead, that will be memorable. ... I was worried he was going to bite Ricardo. We've had some not ideal finishes this year and you're not there until you get to the wire."

Santana's take: "That was kind of scary. That never happened to me before and the only thing I can think is, 'Don't stop riding.'"

One race after the Jerkens, 3-year-olds tackled the same conditions in the $500,000 Grade I H. Allen Jerkens Stakes with everyone pretty much sure the race boiled down to two -- Jackie's Warrior and Life Is Good.

And so it did, with Jackie's Warrior chasing down pacesetting Life Is Good turning for home, then winning a stretch-long war by a neck. It was another 8 3/4 lengths back to Following Sea in third.

Jackie's Warrior, under Joel Rosario, was clocked in 1:21.39, winning for the seventh time from nine starts. He has not lost going 1 mile or shorter.


Life Is Good, meanwhile, was impressive in making his return after a 5 1/2-month absence that caused him to miss the Triple Crown. Both should be right in the mix for the rest of the year, likely in different races.

"This horse is incredible," said Asmussen, who trains Yaupon and Jackie's Warrior. "We breezed Jackie and Yaupon together 12 or 13 days ago and the way that they handled it and the way they came back from it gives you all kinds of confidence.

"I think they both ran their race and showed their Grade I ability against great fields and on Travers Day. What could be better?"

Now, he said, his task is to plot courses for both to get to the Breeders' Cup.

Mike Smith, who rode Life Is Good, said, "It was his first race back. We're asking him to run against probably the best sprinters in the country, if not the world, to be honest with you right now, and for him to run like he did it was pretty incredible."

Out west at Del Mar, Ginobili rallied from a pace-stalking trip to win Saturday's $200,000 Grade II Pat O'Brien Stakes by 1 3/4 lengths over the favorite, C Z Rocket. Flagstaff was just a head farther back in third.


Ginobili, a 4-year-old Munnings colt, ran 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:22.36. Drayden Van Dyke rode for trainer Richard Baltas.

Brickyard Ride ran off before the O'Brien, was corralled and loaded, then set the early pace before folding to finish last of nine.

The O'Brien was a "Win and You're In" for the Big Ass Fans Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile and Ginobili's connections now have options at a bunch of distances for the colt, whose two previous wins came at 6 furlongs and 1 mile.

"We nominated him to the Pacific Classic [at 1 1/4 miles], but we talked it over with the owners and decided to go here," Baltas said. "Then he drew the rail but it really didn't seem to matter. I'm just very, very happy."


The final furlong of Saturday's $750,000 Grade I Resorts World Casino Sword Dancer Stakes at Saratoga came down to who got a clear run and who did not.

Gufo, with Joel Rosario up, got the trip and Irish invader Japan, under Ryan Moore did not. As the early speed flagged at the top of the stretch, Gufo was in full flight from the back of the pack. He charged by most of the field, effectively helping box Japan in behind rivals.


Once Gufo was past, Japan cranked it up but it was too late and he settled for second, a neck behind. Cross Border was 3 1/2 lengths farther up the lane in third.

Gufo, a 4-year-old colt by Declaration of War, ran 1 1/2 miles on the firm inner turf course in 2:28.30 while picking up his second straight win.

His previous best was a victory in last year's Grade I Belmont Derby. Japan, a budding star at 3, slumped last season, but came across the Atlantic off a Group 3 win in Ireland and ran well enough to win with a better trip.

"I am delighted with this horse and the way he ran today," said Gufo's trainer, Christophe Clement. "He is a top-class horse. He's always been a top-class horse. A mile and a quarter, a mile and a half, it really doesn't matter for him ... This is fun, and it's the kind of race we like to win."

The victory earned Gufo a "Win and You're In" spot in the Longines Breeders' Cup Turf but Clement was not in a rush to commit to that or to the $500,000 Grade I Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at Belmont Park Oct. 9. "We'll enjoy this and go from there," he said.


Filly & Mare Turf

Viadera got the best of a four-way scramble to the finish in Saturday's $400,000 Grade II Ballston Spa Stakes at Saratoga.

With Joel Rosario up, the 5-year-old Juddmonte Farms homebred rallied outside the early speed, got to the front by the sixteenth pole and held off High Opinion by a nose.

Kalifornia Queen and pacesetter Tamahare finished third and fourth with only High Opinion preventing a trifecta sweep by trainer

Chad Brown. Viadera, a British-bred daughter of Bated Breath, finished 1 1/16 miles on firm going in 1:41.82. It was her fourth win from six U.S. starts -- a distinct improvement over her earlier career in Ireland.

Brown got the weekend off to a flying start in Thursday's $120,000 Riskaverse Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Saratoga as Rastafara stalked the pace, pounced and won by 1 1/2 lengths over Third Draft.

Rastafara, an Irish-bred daughter of Shamardal, finished 1 mile on the firm inner turf layout in 1:35.53 with Irad Ortiz Jr. up, scoring her second straight win.

Vigilantes Way, the odds-on favorite, found just enough of a way to get the job done in Saturday's $100,000 Miss Liberty Stakes at Monmouth Park, rallying three-wide and then outfinishing Miss Teheran by 1/2 length. Counterparty Risk was third.


Vigilantes Way, a 4-year-old Phipps Stable homebred by Medaglia d'Oro, got 1 1/16 miles on good turf in 1:43.14 with Paco Lopez riding for trainer Shug McGaughey. Winner of the Grade III Eatontown Stakes over the course in June, Vigilantes Way was returning from a seventh-place finish in the Grade I Diana at Saratoga.

Turf Mile

Sifting Sands rallied three-wide into the stretch in Sunday's restricted $120,000 Better Talk Now Stakes for 3-year-olds at Saratoga and ran on to win by a head over the pacesetting long shot, Dreamer's Disease. Wolfie's Dynaghost was third.

Sifting Sands, a British-bred Dubawi colt, got 1 mile on the firm inner turf course in 1:35.12 with Manny Franco riding and trainer Chad Brown adding another notch to his New York turf stakes belt. It was his third win from five starts.

Turf Sprint

Belgrano rallied up the rail to win Saturday's $100,000 Rainbow Heir Stakes at Monmouth Park by 2 lengths over Grateful Bred. The Connector put in a late rally to snatch third from the pacesetting favorite, Shekky Shebaz.

Belgrano, a 7-year-old War Front gelding, ran 5 1/2 furlongs on good turf in 1:02.52 with Isaac Castillo in the irons.


Octane was firing on all cylinders in Saturday's $200,000 Affirmed Division of the Florida Sire Stakes, leading from the early yards and winning by 3 1/4 lengths. The favorite, Cajun's Magic, was up for second with Big and Classy third.


Octane, a Brethren gelding, was sent off at odds of 10-1 and finished 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:25.16 under Emisael Jaramillo. Octane, trained by Carlos David, was second in his career debut in June, then won a month later.

Saturday at Arlington Park, Nobals rallied to the lead in the stretch run of the $75,000 Arlington-Washington Futurity and scooted off to a 4 1/2-lengths win. Magician Stone was second with the odds-on favorite, Baladi, another 1 3/4 lengths back in third.

Nobals, a Noble Mission gelding, ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:24.71 under Pablo Morales. He won at first asking at Presque Isle Downs July 14 and now is undefeated after two starts.

Other races for state-bred 2-year-olds:

Senbei dueled to the lead in Friday's $200,000 Funny Cide Stakes at Saratoga, finally shook off the challenger and went on to win by 2 3/4 lengths, covering 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:18.09. The Candy Ride colt, from Christophe Clement's barn, remains undefeated after two starts.

Ironstone was impressive in Sunday's $201,000 (Canadian) Simcoe Stakes for Canadian-foaled 2-year-olds, drawing off in the stretch to win by 8 1/2 lengths and sparking 2022 Queen's Plate dreams.


The Mr Speaker colt, out of the Unbridled's Song mare Casey's Dreamin', ran 6 1/2 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:16.61, winning for the first time in his third start.

Rebel Empire took the lead in the stretch in Thursday's $50,000 Dover Stakes for Delaware-certified 2-year-olds at Delaware Park and got off to win by 4 lengths over the odds-on favorite, No Sabe Nada.

Covering 5 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:04.41 under Aubie Green, the Sky Kingdom gelding won his second straight start.

Cynergy's Star dueled to the lead in the stretch run in Sunday's $113,500 Timonium Juvenile Stakes at the Maryland State Fair, and then worked his way clear to win by 2 lengths over Slaats.

Cynergy's Star, a Maryland-bred Great Notion gelding, ran 6 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:21.57 with Jevian Toledo up.

Juvenile Fillies

Outfoxed flat out outran 10 rivals in Saturday's $200,000 Susan's Girl Division of the Florida Sire Stakes, charging down the stretch to score by 13 1/2 lengths. Devilette was second with My Sassenach rallying to get show money.

Outfoxed, a daughter of Valiant Minister, was clocked in 1:23.81 for 7 furlongs over a fast track with Edgard Zayas up. The Bill Mott trainee finished third in her only previous start, in Saratoga last month.


At Arlington Park, Chacalosa squeezed through a hole on the inside at the top of the stretch in Saturday's $75,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie and got clear in the late going to win by 1 1/2 lengths over Queen's Up. The favorite, Purr Sea, was third.

Chacalosa, a Florida-bred daughter of Jess's Dream, ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:25.25 with Javier Tavares riding. With Arlington up for sale, this is likely to go into the books as the last stakes race in the track's history.

Other races for state-bred 2-year-old fillies:

November Rein led gate to wire in Friday's $200,000 Seeking the Ante Stakes at Saratoga, covering 6 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:11.74. The Street Boss filly, trained by Kelly Breen, now is 2-for-3.

Baksheesh came from next-last of 11 to win Sunday's $201,000 (Canadian) Muskoka Stakes for Canadian-foaled 2-year-old fillies at Woodbine by 4 lengths. Thatsitthatsall was second, 2 1/2 lengths in front of first-timer Proud Speaker.

Baksheesh, a Summer Front filly, ran 6 1/2 furlongs on the all-weather track with Kazushi Kimura riding.

Around the world, around the clock:

It was a bit of a slow weekend on the international scene, but here's what's on offer:



Lavender's Blue was up in the final strides to deny heavy favorite Benbatl in Saturday's Group 2 tote Celebration Mile at Goodwood. Both were away well back of the leaders, but jockey Oisin Murphy rallied the favorite to the lead inside the 2-furlongs marker.

Lavender's Blue, with Rob Hornby up, came calling through the last 100 yards and just got the job done. Murphy said Benbatl broke with his head in the air, likely costing the win in his first start since last September. This 5-year-old Sea the Stars mare, won for the fourth time in 16 starts.


Behemoth held on to a narrow lead in the final 100 meters to win a three-horse finish in Saturday's Group 1 Moet & Chandon Memsie Stakes at Caulfield, edging Beau Rossa by a head. The favorite, Tofane, was another head back in third at the end of the 7 furlongs.

Behemoth, a 6-year-old All Too Hard gelding, made it back-to-back wins to start the season. It also was back-to-back wins in the Memsie for the David Jolly trainee.

Probabeel got her campaign off to a satisfactory start on the same program, also by a narrow margin. The 5-year-old Savabeel mare just did get home first by a head over 40-1 shot Chassis in the Group 3 W.W. Cockram Stakes for fillies and mares at 6 furlongs.


Probabeel was 2-for-4 last season, ending with a second in the Group 1 Queen of the Turf.

Meanwhile, back in North America:


Byhubbyhellomoney was up in the final strides to deny the favorite, Make Mischief, by a neck in Friday's $200,000 Fleet Indian Stakes for New York-bred 3-year-old fillies. The winner, a daughter of Effinex, ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:52.07 under Joel Rosario.

City Man dueled Therapist into submission, albeit only by a nose, at the finish of Friday's $150,000 West Point Stakes for state-breds. City Man, a 4-year-old Mucho Macho Man colt, ran 1 1/8 miles on the firm inner turf course in 1:41.30 for Rosario.

Giacosa came from next-last of 10 to win Friday's $150,000 Yaddo Handicap for New York-bred fillies and mares by 3/4 length. With Saez in the irons, the Tizway filly ran 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:42.54.

Del Mar

Miss Bigly pressed the pace made by Paige Anne in Friday's restricted $100,000 Tranquility Lake Stakes for fillies and mares, then won the sprint to the wire by a neck.

Miss Bigly, a 5-year-old Gemologist mare, ran 1 mile on a fast track in 1:38.08 with Juan Hernandez riding.



Il Malocchio rallied four-wide to pass the early leaders and win Saturday's $250,000 (Canadian) Bison City Stakes for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies at Woodbine by 1/2 length from Emmeline.

Cielo d'Oro was along for third as the pacesetting odds-on favorite, Miss Speedy, surrendered a huge lead and reported fourth.

Il Malocchio, a daughter of Super Speedy, ran 1 1/16 miles on the all-weather track in 1:43.42 with Patrick Husbands up for trainer Martin Drexler.

Despite finishing third in the Woodbine Oaks in her previous outing, Il Malocchio was sent off at odds of nearly 5-1 in the Bison City.

Secret Reserve drew off in the stretch to win Sunday's $100,000 (Canadian) Elgin Stakes for 3-year-old, Canadian-foaled colts and geldings by 3 3/4 lengths. Mason's Gamble was second as Secret Reserve, a Giant Gizmo gelding, ran 7 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:22.30.

Lorena found her best stride in the final furlong of Sunday's $100,000 (Canadian) Algoma Stakes for Canadian-foaled 3-year-old fillies, outfinishing Jilli Marie by 1 1/4 lengths. Lorena, a Souper Speedy filly, sped home in 1:23.79.

Monmouth Park

Sunday's three stakes were all for New Jersey-breds.

Amatteroftime rallied from just back of the early leader to claim the $125,000 Charles Hesse III Handicap at 1 1/16 miles on the dirt by 4 3/4 lengths.


The 6-year-old Eskendereya gelding finished in 1:44.49 with Paco Lopez up. Pickin' Time got the lead in the stretch in the $102,000 New Jersey Breeders Handicap at 6 furlongs and held off the odds-on favorite, Golden Brown, for the win.

And Alta Velocita closed stoutly in the closing furlong of the $110,000 Eleven North Handicap for fillies and mares to win by a nose over Jersey Jewel.

Charles Town

On Friday night's Charles Town Classic undercard:

Lady Rocket led in the $150,000 Misty Bennett Pink Ribbon Stakes for fillies and mares, turned back a challenge and went on to win by 1 3/4 length from Landing Zone.

Lady Rocket, a 4-year-old Tale of the Cat filly trained by Brad Cox, ran 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:24.56 with Florent Geroux up.

Exculpatory went right to the lead in the $150,000 Robert Hilton Memorial for 3-year-olds, then kicked loose in the lane to win by 6 1/4 lengths over Awesome Gerry. Exculpatory, a Mineshaft colt, ran 7 furlongs in 1:23.49 with Carol Cedeno riding.

Vertical Threat went quickly to the horizontal front in the $150,000 Russell Road Stakes and got off to a 3 1/2-lengths score. Wind of Change was second as Vertical Threat, a 4-year-old Tapiture colt, ran 7 furlongs in 1:24.50 with Geroux in the irons.


Star of the Night was just that, winning the $75,000 Sadie Hawkins for state-bred fillies and mares by 1 1/4 lengths at odds of 1-5. Social Chic dominated the $75,000 Robert G. Leavitt Stakes for state-bred 3-year-olds, winning by 2 3/4 lengths.

Door Buster was along late to win the $75,000 Sylvia Bishop Memorial for West Virginia-bred 3-year-old fillies by 2 lengths.

Belterra Park

Lemon Deelite progressed from mid-pack to a 1 1/2-length victory over pacesetting Shez Shacked Up in Friday's $75,000 Tomboy Stakes for Ohio-bred 3-year-old fillies. Lemon Deelite, a Lemon Drop Kid filly, got 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.73 with John McKee up.


Pirate Junction set a pressured pace in Saturday's $75,000 Charles Taylor Stakes for 3-year-olds, took a slightly bigger lead in the lane and then held off a late run by the favorite, Canoodling, to win by 1/2 length. It was another 6 3/4 lengths to Beckham James in third.

Pirate Junction, a Paynter gelding, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:43.56 for jockey Aldo Arboleda.

Emerald Downs

Top Executive drafted behind pacesetting Coastal Kid in Sunday's $50,000 Muckleshoot Derby, dueled with that one in the lane and prevailed by a head. The Street Boss colt ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:42.25 with Kevin Orozco up.


Bayakoas Image pressed the pace in Sunday's $50,000 Washington Oaks, jumped out to a big lead in the stretch and carried on, winning by 5 3/4 lengths. Broad Approval was second-best.

Bayakoas Image, a British Columbia-bred filly by Lent, reported in 1:42.24 with Alexander Marti riding.

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