Eastern Sky Doesn’t Disappoint in Sands Point

The Sands Point (Grade 2)- $400.000 Purse
BEL- For Fillies Three Years Old
One Mile and One Eighth on the Inner Turf
September 16, 2017

Eastern Sky seemed as though she would be the strong favorite heading into the 13th running of the Sands Point, but she was not even the choice of the betting public for the race. What looked like a 3/5 type favorite where you try to beat them with someone else, all of the sudden Eastern Sky’s 9/5 odds made sense to just go with her. She would not disappoint. It’s not often that the class of the field puts an exclamation point on the race, but the Maxmillion Farm filly did exactly that, giving the trainer his first win in this stake. Jockey J K Court is also a first time winner in the stake. Congratulations! The time of the race was 1:46.29, which is off a bit from prior years, but it was all that was needed today.

(½ Mile- :46.77)- Steel Drummer broke the quickest of them all out of the gate for Axeman, and she would gradually inch away from those behind her over the opening turn, and as the race moved into the backstretch. Keeping her in sight was Neonautics, for Alberta Rose Stables, as she would run second with a gap of nearly two lengths. Cinis (John Henry) and our winner Eastern Sky (Maxmillion Farm) would run side by side about another length back. Trailing the field, and the leader by five lengths was the post time, even money favorite from Drabfantasy, Nebraska Bootyism II.

(3/4 Mile- 1:10.08)- Down the backstretch we go with little movement from the field during this portion, which is not terribly surprising. The gaps between all the runners are pretty much the same, but there is some excitement developing as Eastern Sky and Cinis move into the turn, and prepare to make their run at Neonautics, and ultimately, Steel Drummer.

(Top of Stretch, 1.5 To Go)- Eastern Sky handles the turn much better then did Cinis as they moved around the turn, and clears that rival who she had been running with the whole way by a full length. She’s still second though, as the longshot Steel Drummer still leads, but sees it cut to just a length. Neonautics has moved to the rail and seems to be slipping now. Nebraska Bootyism II moves to the outside and looks to show everyone why she, and not Eastern Sky, is the favorite. Her gap to the leader is three lengths, so it’s within reach with a great closing kick.

(Finish- 1:46.29)- Eastern Sky goes to the outside of Steel Drummer and prepares to make the pass, but Steel Drummer is not going to make it easy. Despite her effort, Eastern Sky is just too good for her and ultimately completes the pass and wins by about a length. Steel Drummer is rewarded, however, for her stretch desire with a second place finish. That close by Nebraska Bootyism II never materialized at all, and she would be unable to even get by Cinis as she only made up half a length in the stretch. Cinis runs third but the trainer may have wanted more. Neonautics is at the back.

About The Winner: Eastern Sky, trained by Maxmillion Farm and ridden by J K Court, is a three year old filly by Eastern Charge, and out of Devon. She was bred in New York as a second quarter two year old by Mcl Stables, and acquired by Maxmillion Farm after just one race in private sales for $30.000 back in November. Congratulations to the connections! Eastern Sky has now won five of 11 starts, including three graded stakes, and this is her second in a row. Her career earnings now sit at $964.320.

##   Horse Name Owner Name Jockey Odds   Fin Time SRF 
  Eastern Sky Maxmillion Farm Court J K 1.80   13/4 1:46.29  
  Steel Drummer Axeman Quinonez L S 28.45   21 1:46.44  
  Cinis John Henry Saez L 15.20   3nk 1:46.78  
  Nebraska Bootyism II Drabfantasy Bravo J 1.00   41 1:46.84  
  Neonautics Alberta Rose Stables Gallardo A A 3.20   5 1:47.09  

Track: Firm

Time: :463  1:10   1:34   1:461

$2 Mutuel Prices:

1 – Eastern Sky 5.60 3.50 2.90
5 – Steel Drummer   19.60 21.20
3 – Cinis     8.60

$1 Exacta: 1 – 5 Paid 64.50

$1 Trifecta: 1 – 5 – 3 Paid 285.00

Scratched: Darkest Days

Winner picked by NS

Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES

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