A sparkling weekend of racing literally around the world was capped by Enable's historic victory in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe -- and the welcome news the 3-year-old filly may stay in training for another year.
Breeders' Cup slots were up for grabs from France to Japan.
Mubtaahij won for the first time in more than 2 1/2 years and earned trainer Bob Baffert a potential fourth spot in the Breeders' up Classic. Red Falx won the Sprinters Stakes for the second straight year in Japan. Beach Patrol backed up his Arlington Million win with a victory in the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic.
Avenge, Takaful, Paradise Woods and Elate all were victorious during the glorious autumn weekend.
Let's get started with the big one:
There are not enough superlatives to describe Enable's victory in Sunday's Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe. Not only did the 3-year-old Nathaniel filly demolish a superbly talented field, she also won her fifth straight Group 1 race -- a string that includes all manner of turf conditions from Ireland to England and across the Channel. With Frankie Dettori winning the Arc for an historic fifth time, Enable waited patiently through the early furlongs in good striking position, quickly passed the leading duo and flew home, winning by 2 1/2 lengths over a late-running Cloth of Stars. Ulysses was third, likely in preparation for a Breeders' Cup reappearance, and last year's third, Order of St George, settled for fourth. "I asked, she gave me four lengths and the race was over," Dettori said after his traditional flying dismount.
Trainer John Gosden held out hope for the future. "I think it would be wrong to run her again this year," he said, ruling out a Breeders' Cup visit. "But if she's in great form, you should consider her again for next year." Said Dettori: "Please!" Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager for Khalid Abdullah's Juddmonte Farms, would say only he would "just like to see the filly back home and then we can ask Prince Khalid what he'd like to do next year."
Breeders' Cup berths up for grabs on the Arc undercard both went to 2-year-old fillies. Wild Illusion upset favorite Polydream in the Group 1 Total Prix Marcel Boussac. The Godolphin-owned Dubawi filly earned a spot in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf. Trainer Aidan O'Brien sent Happily against male 2-year-olds in the Group 1 Qatar Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere and she took charge in the final 100 meters, defeating Olmedo by 1 1/2 lengths and securing a spot in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf -- a berth the Breeders' Cup folks would gladly convert to the filly race.
In the Group 1 Prix de l'Opera Longines, the Coolmore bouquet of Rhododendron and Hydrangea -- both 3-year-old Galileo fillies -- got home first and second, followed by Lady Frankel. Trainer Aidan O'Brien said Rhododendron is a strong possibility for the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.
Battaash was reluctant to load before the Group 1 Prix de l'Abbaye Longines. But once the 3-year-old Dark Angel gelding was safely in the gate, he blasted away and won in a romp, beating Marsha by 4 lengths at the end of the 5 furlongs. His time of 57.59 seconds was remarkable given the soft ground at Chantilly.
In the day's final race, Acclaim edged long shot So Blessed by 3/4 length in the Group 1 Qatar Prix de la Foret, going 7 furlongs over the soft ground. Acclaim, a 4-year-old colt by Acclamation, scored his first Group 1 win.
On Saturday at Newmarket, U S Navy Flag secured a spot in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf with an upset win in the Group 1 Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes. The American-bred War Front colt got the better of stablemate Fleet Review with the favorite, Beckford, checking in fifth.
Friday's Newmarket Breeders' Cup Challenge, the Group 2 Shadwell Rockfel Stakes, went to Juliet Capulet, a Dark Angel filly trained by John Gosden. She defeated the favorite, Nyaleti, by a head.
Jockey Mirco Demuro pulled the trigger at the last possible moment in Sunday's Group 1 Sprinters Stakes at Nakayama, sending Red Falx flying outside the leaders to land a second straight running of the 1,200-furlongs fixture. Let's Go Donki was second, a neck behind Red Falx and 1/2 length to the good of the pacesetter, Once in a Moon. The only foreign entrant, Hong Kong-based Blizzard, ran well to finish fifth, beaten only 1 length. Red Falx, a 6-year-old son of Swept Overboard, got 1,200 meters over firm turf in 1:07.6. Winning trainer Tomohito Ozeki admitted he was "a little worried" when Red Falx was well back in the pack as the field turned for home. "Coming into the straight I honestly thought that he may not make it. But he's exceeded my expectations and is an incredible horse," the trainer said. The 2016 Sprinters Stakes was Red Falx's first win at the highest level. He followed that with a disappointing run in the Longines Hong Kong Sprint (G1) at Sha Tin but returned to form when back in Japan. He won the Keo Hai Spring Cup (G2) at 1,400 meters at Tokyo Racecourse in June and was third behind Satono Aladdin in the 1,600-meter Yasuda Kinen (G1) over the same course in June. The Sprinters Stakes is a Breeders' Cup Challenge race offering a spot in the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint, which would seem an unlikely spot for Red Falx.
Saturday's Group 2 Santos Coffee Premiere Stakes at Royal Randwick produced quite a shock -- both for the punters on track and for prospects for the Aus$10 million Everest Stakes two weeks hence. Chautauqua, one of the highly fancied for the Everest, never landed a blow in the Premier, finishing sixth, beaten 2 3/4 lengths as In Her Time defeated English by a head in the 6-furlongs fixture. Despite the outcome, English and Chautauqua, as well as Premiere third Clearly Innocent, will have a spot in the Everest while In Her Time will not.
At Caulfield on Sunday, Bonneval, under Hugh Bowman, defeated the favorite, Hartnell, by 1 length in the Group 1 Hyland Race Colours Underwood Stakes at 9 furlongs. Gailo Chop was third.
Back in North America:
Mubtaahij had not won a race in two years, six months and two days when he entered the starting gate for Saturday's $300,000 Grade I Awesome Again Stakes at Santa Anita. He had not raced at all since March 29, when he finished fourth in the Dubai World Cup. And he was making his first start for trainer Bob Baffert. Despite all that, the 5-year-old son of Dubawi swept by the early leaders at mid-stretch and rolled home first, 1 1/2 lengths to the good of persistent pacesetter Midnight Storm. Win the Space rallied from last to take third from the disappointing favorite, Cupid. Mubtaahij, with Drayden Van Dyke in the irons, ran 9 furlongs on a fast track in 1:51.32. His last previous win was the Group 2 UAE Derby at Meydan March 28, 2015. The Awesome Again was a "Win and You're In" race for the Breeders' Cup Classic and Mubtaahij's victory means that race could have the three of the first four finishers from this year's Dubai World Cup -- Arrogate, runner-up Gun Runner and Mubtaahij, who finished fourth.
Baffert noted Mubtaahij ran well last summer in New York against top competition, albeit without winning, and said the addition of blinkers "kept him more focused, I think. He's a horse that's not winning so you want to change something up."
Baffert trains Arrogate, as well as Collected and Cupid, all of whom could be Classic runners. "They're all in. They're all being pointed for it, unless they're not training well or something," he said. "I don't want to jinx myself. I don't want to get too ahead of myself and it's a nice problem. But, like I said, they have to be training well and they've got to stay healthy."
In Saturday's $200,000 Grade III Lukas Classic at Churchill Downs, Honorable Duty went quickly to the lead under Corey Lanerie and extended the advantage throughout, winning by 4 3/4 lengths, ridden out. Money Flows was second and Seeking the Soul finished third. Honorable Duty, a 5-year-old Distorted Humor gelding, ran 9 furlongs on a fast track in 1:49.42. He had been idle since June, when he finished second to Gun Runner -- albeit 7 lengths behind that one -- in the Grade I Stephen Foster. "I'm not entirely sure what we'll do for the remainder of the year," said winning trainer Brendan Walsh. He said the "original plan" was the Grade II Fayette at Keeneland Oct. 28 then the Grade I Clark Handicap Nov. 24 at Churchill Downs.
At Woodbine, Melmich easily justified his odds-on favoritism in Saturday's $150,000 (Canadian) Grade III Durham Cup, drawing off smartly in the lane to win by 7 1/2 lengths. U S Marshall led early and beat the other the other three. Narrow Escape was only a neck behind that one in third. Melmich, a 6-year-old Wilko gelding, ran 9 furlongs on the all-weather track in 1:49.86 for jockey Eurico Da Silva. "He seems to prosper here and things are going good for him," said winning trainer Kevin Attard. "I think he has a serious chance at maybe Horse of the Year honors at this pace. That's obviously a big target and I would like to see him get rewarded."
Beach Patrol staked a claim atop the ranks of American turf runners with a 5-lengths victory in Saturday's $500,000 Grade I Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at Belmont Park. Winner of the Grade I Arlington Million in his previous start, the 4-year-old Lemon Drop Kid colt ran 1 1/2 miles on firm going in 2:26.29 under Joel Rosario. Beach Patrol was always in charge, trailing only a 147-1 longshot through the first half of the race, then taking command easily with a furlong to run. The race was a "Win and You're In" for the Longines Breeders' Cup Turf next month but Beach Patrol already had earned that spot with the Million win.
Fanciful Angel, runner-up to Beach Patrol in the Million, put a nose in front of Oscar Performance for second. Oscar Performance was coming off a win in the Grade I Secretariat Stakes, the 3-year-old Arlington companion race to the Million. Further franking the form of those Chicago races, Beach Patrol won the 2016 Secretariat.
Beach Patrol "is a classy horse and Joel gets along with him well," said Chad Brown, who trains both the winner and Fanciful Angel. "I think their relationship has a lot to do with how this horse has developed in the second half of the year." Brown added Beach Patrol likes firm turf, as he's likely to find at Del Mar for the Breeders' Cup, "so I'm not too worried about how he'll handle the track out there. I'd be more concerned about the competition. He's earned a place in the race for sure and he's formidable."
Itsinthepost was up in the final strides to win Sunday's $200,000 Grade II John Henry Turf Championship at Santa Anita by a head over Prime Attraction. Frank Conversation was another 2 1/2 lengths back in third. Itsinthepost, a 5-year-old French-bred gelding by American Post, ran 1 1/4 miles on firm turf in 1:58.28. Tyler Baze had the mount for trainer Jeff Mullins. "I love this horse. I really do," Baze said. "Jeff and I talked about this race and it came up pretty much the way we thought. He laid pretty close today and he still had a really good kick. Wherever he goes, I go."
Projected joined the ranks of graded stakes winners with a pace-stalking, 1 1/4-lengths triumph in Saturday's $200,000 Grade II Baltimore-Washington International Turf Cup at Laurel Park. The Juddmonte Farms homebred, a 5-year-old Showcasing gelding, found his best stride at mid-stretch, quickly passed a breakaway long shot leader and edged clear late. Catapault was second, a nose in front of Ring Weekend. Projected, with Nik Juarez up for trainer Chad Brown, ran 1 mile on firm turf in 1:34.25. He was second earlier this year in both the Group II Dixie at Pimlico and the Group II Poker at Belmont Park. Brown also trains Catapault and assistant Dermot Magner said, "Both horses ran a huge race. Both riders ran a very intelligent race. One had to win and one had to be second."
Sal Sinatra, president and general manager of the Maryland Jockey Club, said the race, formerly the Commonwealth Turf Cup, has been made "kind of a placeholder for the D.C. International" -- one of the world's top turf races during much of the second half of the 20th Century. "There's also the possibility of talking to embassies in Washington, and we've also talked about connections securing a spot in the starting gate similar to the Pegasus World Cup," Sinatra said. "Whatever we decide or however we move forward, we very much want to make this race the centerpiece of Laurel."
Also Saturday at Laurel, Just Howard stepped way up in class and still notched his third straight win, taking the $200,000 Grade III Commonwealth Derby by 3/4 length, catching the front-running favorite, Voodoo Song, inside the sixteenth pole. Profiteer was along for third, 1 length behind Voodoo Song. Just Howard, an English Channel colt, ran 9 furlongs on the firm going in 1:45.81 with Feargal Lynch riding for trainer Graham Motion. It was his first win against unrestricted winners.
Mr. Misunderstood drove past pacesetting Mr Cub at the top of the lane in Saturday's $100,000 Jefferson Cup for 3-year-olds at Churchill Downs and shook clear to a 2 3/4-lengths victory. Adonis Creed raced evenly to finish second, 1 3/4 lengths ahead of Giant Payday. Mr. Misunderstood, an Archarcharch gelding, ran 1 1/8 miles on firm turf in 1:47.78 with Florent Geroux up. It was his fifth win from his last six starts, a record marred only by a last-place finish in the Illinois Derby over the Hawthorne Racecourse dirt. "We'll target the Commonwealth Turf, then probably give him a break for a spring campaign next year," said winning trainer Brad Cox, who also handles Adonis Creed.
Filly & Mare Turf
Avenge tracked pacesetting Goldy Espony early in Saturday's $300,000 Grade I Rodeo Drive Stakes at Santa Anita, took over and opened a daylight lead, then survived a late bid from that same Goldy Espony to win by 3/4 length. Responsibleforlove and Amboseli were third and fourth, two noses behind Goldy Espony. Avenge, a 5-year-old War Front mare, ran 1 1/4 miles on firm turf in 1:58.84 with Flavien Prat riding. Trainer Richard Mandella said Avenge's year has "been frustrating because we couldn't quite get her back to herself until now. But I think we do have her now and we hope we're in as good of shape as we did last year." In 2016 she won the Rodeo Drive and went on to finish third in the Breeders' Cup filly & Mare Turf after leading most of the way. In two previous starts this year, she was third and sixth.
Rymska took the long way around in Saturday's $150,000 Grade III Commonwealth Oaks at Laurel Park and was able to get there in time anyway, winning by 3/4 length over Taperge. I'm Betty G led the way and held on for show money. Rymska, a French-bred filly by Le Havre, ran 9 furlongs on firm going in 1:46.94 with Feargal Lynch up for trainer Chad Brown. Rymska, fifth in last year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf in her first U.S. run, had not raced since winning the Grade III Sweetest Chant at Gulfstream Park Feb. 4.
Storm the Hill stormed down the hill to win Saturday's $70,000 Unzip Me Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Santa Anita, edging Tapped by a head and Spin Me a Kiss by the same margin. Storm the Hill, a Get Stormy filly, finished the gravity-assisted 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:12.21 with Corey Nakatani at the controls. Trainer Peter Miller has tried the filly at distances up to 9 furlongs but found the most success at the sprint.
Takaful dogged pacesetting El Deal throughout Saturday's $350,000 Grade I Vosburgh at Belmont Park, then gradually closed the gap and eased by that rival in the final yards to win by 3/4 length. Stallwalkin' Dude rallied boldly on the outside to finish third, another 1/2 length in arrears. Takaful, a 3-year-old Shadwell homebred colt by Bernardini, finished the 6 furlongs on a good track in 1:09.69 under Jose Ortiz. Takaful was rerouted to sprinting after stopping badly in the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park. He now has a win and two seconds since returning to one-turn races. "He's a difficult horse in the mornings but a fun horse, too, when you end up in the winner's circle," said Kiaran McLaughlin, who trains Takaful for Sheikh Hamdan. "Jose rode a great race. It gives us confidence that he was successfully able to stalk." The race was a Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" for the Breeders' Cup Twin Spires Sprint on Nov. 4. "It gives us confidence and we're happy that we were able to win a Grade 1 today," McLaughlin said. "Where we go from here, we will talk to the boss."
Awesome Slew, after finishing second behind some of the world's top sprinters in his last two starts, broke through in Saturday's $100,000 Grade III Ack Ack Stakes at Churchill Downs, rolling from mid-pack to win by 1 length over a somewhat softer field. The Player, winner of an Ellis Park optional claimer in his previous start, was second and Pinson, with a similar history, finished third. Awesome Slew, a 4-year-old colt by Awesome Again, got the one-turn mile in 1:35.02 with Corey Lanerie up. Coming into the Ack Ack, he was second to reigning Breeders' Cup Sprint winner Drefong in the Grade I Forego and second in the Grade II Belmont Sprint to Mind Your Biscuits, who was second in the Breeders' Cup and winner in the Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen at Meydan in March. "There's still some discussion to be had but right now we'll point towards the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile," said assistant trainer Norm Casse.
Paradise Woods returned to the scene of her romping win in the Grade I Santa Anita Oaks and provided an encore in Saturday's $300,000 Grade I Zenyatta, leading all the way to a 5 1/4-lengths victory. The Union Rags filly was never threatened in any way as she earned a spot in the Longines Breeders' Cup Distaff through the "Win and You're In" program. Faithfully, Motown Lady and Midnight Toast completed the order of finish as Paradise Woods ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:44.34. Paradise Woods moved from the Santa Anita Oaks to the Kentucky Oaks, where she led to the quarter pole over a sloppy track, then faded to finish 11th. After a long rest, she stumbled at the start of the Grade III Torrey Pines at Del Mar and finished sixth. "She'd kind of gone south mentally on me and we went through some hard times. But we got through it," said winning trainer Richard Mandella. "Last time was very bad and nothing went well," agreed jockey Flavien Prat, who won three Grade I races on the card. "Today she broke just a tad slow but she got going and really relaxed for me on the backside. We've been working on her relaxing because she has a tendency sometimes to be very aggressive." Mandella added, "The (Breeders' Cup) Distaff is the goal."
Elate squeezed through a narrow opening between rivals at mid-stretch and left her rivals in the dust in Saturday's $400,000, Grade I Beldame at Belmont Park. Money'soncharlotte was second, 7 3/4 lengths in arrears, and Eskenformoney finished third as Elate finished in 1:50.21. "When I saw an opening between those horses, I just asked her a little bit and then I wrapped up, saved something for next time," said winning rider Jose Ortiz, belying the ease of the victory. Elate struggled early in the year, finally breaking through with a win in a minor stakes at Delaware Park in June. She then finished second, beaten just a head by Kentucky Oaks winner Abel Tasman, in the Grade I Coaching Club American Oaks, and went on to win the Grade I Alabama at Saratoga. "I was quite impressed with the acceleration she showed today when she did get through," said winning trainer Bill Mott. "I think that part of her has improved as the year's gone on. She's learning how to use her speed. We've had a good year. Anything we do from here on out is icing on the cake."
Bolt d'Oro seized the lead turning for home in Saturday's $300,000 Grade I Front Runner at Santa Anita and quickly distanced the field, winning off by 7 3/4 lengths to remain undefeated in three starts and earn a "Win and You're In" spot in the Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile. With Corey Nakatani in the irons, the Medaglia d'Oro colt sped 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:43.54. Solomini beat the other seven with Take the One O One third at a big price. The victory backed up Bolt d'Oro's score in the Grade I Del Mar Futurity in his previous start. Winning trainer Mick Ruis said he was happy Bolt d'Oro proved he can handle two turns. "Our goal was this race and the Breeders' Cup, and then give him a chance to grow up," Ruis said. "Hopefully what dreams are made of is what this guy might be able to get us to."
Soutache ran like the heavy favorite he was in Saturday's $400,000 In Reality Division of the Florida Sire Stakes at Gulfstream Park, tracking the pace, taking over when prompted by jockey Tyler Gaffalione and winning off by 1 1/2 lengths. Tip Sheet and Highborn were second and third in a strung-out finish. Soutache, a Backtalk colt, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:45.10. He finished third in the first leg of the FSS but swept the last two. Asked if he had any desire to look at the Breeders' Cup with Soutache, trainer Ralph Nicks said, "I would imagine he's going to get a vacation."
Archaggelos rallied to the lead a furlong from the wire in Sunday's $150,000 (Canadian) Grey Stakes at Santa Anita and kicked away to a 2 1/4-lengths victory over Peppered. Tale of Vienna finished third at long odds. Archaggelos, a Kentucky-bred Temple City colt, ran 1 1/16 miles on the all-weather track in 1:44.56 with Rafael Hernandez in the irons. He was coming off a maiden win at Laurel Park.
Respect the Hustle hustled home first in Saturday's $75,000 Oak Tree Juvenile at Pleasanton, rallying by early leader Axelrod to score a 1 3/4-length victory. Night At the Opera was second and the odds-on favorite, Artie B Good, was third. Respect the Hustle, a Colonel John colt, ran 1 mile and 70 yards on a fast track in 1:43.92 for jockey Juan Hernandez.
Seabhac rallied to the lead inside the sixteenth pole and went on to win Saturday's $200,000 Grade III Pilgrim at Belmont Park by 1/2 length over Voting Control. Maraud was third and the pacesetter, Looking Ready, held on for fourth. Seabhac, a Scat Daddy colt trained by Todd Pletcher for Donegal Racing, ran 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.48. It was his first win and followed a fourth-place finish in the Grade III With Anticipation at Saratoga. "When I got on him, I could feel he was ready today," said winning rider Luis Saez. Pletcher added blinkers for the race. ""I think blinkers and experience; a combination of those things helped," Pletcher said. "He ran good races both times at Saratoga. He just encountered a little bit of traffic, especially in his first start. He seems like a talented colt who is still figuring it out." The name is Irish or Gaelic for Hawk and pronounced, roughly, "SHOW-kh".
Moonshine Memories tracked pacesetting favorite Alluring Star through the early furlongs of Saturday's $300,000 Grade I Chandelier Stakes at Santa Anita, took over when called upon by jockey Flavien Prat and drew off to win by 2 3/4 lengths, earning a spot in the 14 Hands Winery Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies through the "Win and You're In" program. Alluring Star held second, a neck in front of Piedi Bianchi. Moonshine Memories, a Malibu Moon filly, ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:46.32 and remained undefeated in three starts. She also won the Grade I Del Mar Debutante. Of that undefeated record going into the Breeders' Cup, trainer Simon Callaghan said, "There's some pressure when you're training a filly like this. It's not any added pressure but it's a good position to be in."
Starship Bonita got first run to the lead in Saturday's $400,000 My Dear Girl Division of the Florida Sire Stakes at Gulfstream Park and held on to win by a neck over the favorite, Dessert Honeys. Awesome Mass was well back in third. Starship Bonita, by Gone Astray, ran 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:48.20 with Carlos Montalvo up. Like Soutache, she won the second and third legs of the three-race series.
Juvenile Fillies Turf
Significant Form rallied four-wide to the lead entering the stretch run in Sunday's $200,000 Grade III Miss Grillo at Belmont Park and ran on well to win by 1 length over Best Performance. Orbolution was third. Significant Form, a Creative Cause filly, ran 1 1/16 miles on the firm inner turf in 1:42.29 with Irad Ortiz Jr. riding for trainer Chad Brown. It was her first win. She finished seventh in her career debut at Saratoga. "This win is really encouraging going forward and heading into the Breeders' Cup," Brown said.
Madefromlucky raced in touch with the early leaders in Sunday's $200,000 Temperence Hill Invitational at Belmont Park, worked past Turco Bravo in the stretch and went on to win by 3/4 length over that rival. Arachanova finished third. Madefromlucky, a 5-year-old son of Lookin At Lucky, ran 1 5/8 miles on a fast track in 2:44.88 with Javier Castellano riding.
Around the ovals:
Analyze the Odds, at odds of nearly 3-1, won a three-way scramble to the wire in Saturday's $200,000 New York Breeders' Futurity for state-foaled 2-year-olds. Mr. Pete was a neck out in second and a neck in front of early leader Collective Effort. The favorite, Indy's Lady, finished last. Analyze the Odds, an Overanalyze colt, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:12.73 with Christopher DeCarlo up.
Galleon Mast rallied to a 1/2-length victory over Galton in Saturday's $75,000 Mr. Steele Stakes. Blue Harbor was third. Galleon Mast, a 4-year-old Mizzen Mast gelding, ran 1 mile on good turf in 1:41.26 with Tyler Gaffalione in the irons.
King's Ghost stalked the pace in Saturday's $75,000 Monroe Stakes for fillies and mares, then got through in the lane to win by 3 lengths. Bonita was second in the 1/16-mile, off-the-turf event. King's Ghost, a 5-year-old Ghostzapper mare, finished in 1:44.21 with Jorge Ruiz up.
Renaisance Frolic kicked clear in the stretch to win Saturday's $75,000 off-the-turf Armed Forces Stakes for 2-year-olds by 3 lengths over Bon Raison. Renaisance Frolic, a Paynter colt, finished 1 mile on a fast track in 1:39.09 under Jose Batista.
Saturday's $75,000 Our Dear Peggy Stakes for 2-year-old fillies also came off the grass but that was no impediment to Blonde Bomber. The Fort Larned filly, out of the El Prado mare Girl Can Rock, jetted off in the lane to win by 7 1/4 lengths over the favorite, Homemade Salsa, finishing the 1 mile in 1:36.99.
Special Envoy made it three straight wins with an off-the-pace triumph in Saturday's $60,000 Bert Allen Stakes for Virginia-breds. The 6-year-old Stroll gelding got home 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Speed Gracer, finishing 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:41.65 with Daniel Centeno up.
Queen Caroline avenged an earlier loss to Armoire in Saturday's $60,000 Brookmeade Stakes for Virginia-bred distaffers, defeating that rival by 1 1/4 lengths. The 4-year-old Blame filly ran 1 1/16 miles on the lawn in 1:40.94 under Feargal Lynch.
Lawyer Dave rallied from last of eight to take the $60,000 Punch Line Stakes for Virginia-breds by a head over Crypto's Holiday with the favorite Two Notch Road a fading sixth. Lawyer Dave, an 8-year-old Lawyer Ron gelding, dashed 5 1/2 grassy furlongs in 1:02.96 with Steve Hamilton up.
Exaggerated was along in the stretch run to win the $60,000 Oakley Stakes for Virginia-bred fillies and mares by 2 lengths from Northern Eclipse. Exaggerated, a 5-year-old mare by Blame, finished the 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:02.92 with Centeno in the irons.
In a 5 1/2-furlongs test for Virginia-bred 2-year-olds, Yes to the Dress led all the way and won by 5 1/4 lengths from Wicked Sister. Yes to the Dress, a Congrats filly, finished in 1:03.27 under Jose Lezcano.
Winplaceorshowono took over late and went on to win Saturday's $100,000 New Castle Stakes for Delaware-certified runners by 4 1/2 lengths from Obvious One. Winplaceorshowono, a 3-year-old Dance With Ravens colt, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:10.59 with Alex Cintron up.
In other stakes on the DTHA Governor's Day program:
Afleet Willy, a 4-year-old Wilburn gelding, was a dominant winner in the 1 mile and 70 yard Governor's Day Handicap; Whereshetoldmetogo, an El Padrino colt, was along late to land the First State Dash for 2-year-olds; Enchanted Star, also by El Padrino, led all the way to win the Small Wonder Stakes for 2-year-old fillies; Laur Net, a 7-year-old Illinois-bred mare by Strong Hope, came from far back to win the George Rosenberger Memorial for fillies and mares; and Hailey's Flip, a 3-year-old Archarcharch filly, took the Tax Free Shopping Distaff.