Pucker Up Stakes – Grade III
1 1/8 Mile Turf Stake Purse $150.000 Filly 3 Year Olds.
This race really set the trend for the day with all the stakes races throwing up very similar looking races where we as writers just had to change the names as the afternoon went on.
This is how the Pucker Up finished:
1st Goblin Judge Wood Duck Stables Gutierrez Mario
The trend of the day was the leaders go too fast too soon and the closer’s swoop and this one judged it perfectly. Backed into an odds on favorite her wet track form certainly helped her success along with the only jockey in the race with a turf preference and like Dead Madness earlier she was the first of the closer’s to make a move on the leader.
Bought back in December at auction for just $8.96 she was put into a couple of cheap allowance races before going for glory in the Edgewood at grade two a big step up in grade. She made the step that day in great style finishing a close third but was then a huge disappointment in the Honeymoon next time when a well beaten last. She put that mysterious effort firmly to bed next out in taking a big ticket allowance and then today broke through with this gutsy win.
This was a great buy by the new trainer who has marked their arrival into that small family of newer stables that have grasped the game quicker than most of the players that have been around for years. I guess the next step for this filly will be to try and get into the BC field and who is to say she can’t achieve that.
2nd = Prime Illusion Nakamura Stables Court J K
Coming back to the turf after some great efforts on the dirt she came from a long way back to dead heat for second but left herself too much to do. She has never got this far behind before which may have been the unfamiliar soft track but the question of her preferred surface will still not be clear in the trainers mind.
2nd = Run Fitchew Night Rider Stables Valdivia J Jr
She loved the conditions and ran nicely for a share of second and is proving to be a highly consistent sort especially when you consider she was bought for just $3 at auction.
4th Naughtygirlsneedlove Big Jd Racing Beschizza A
This horse has never been a front runner before but today she became one and it certainly cost her a better finish. The trend of the day was for some horses to go into a clear lead and fade. We will probably never know whether it was the pace instructions that were the problem or just the wet track race engine but this was an uncharacteristic run from the filly. I think she struggles to get a full nine furlongs at this level going on her three stakes efforts recently but i wouldn’t be judging her on this run.