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From Coast to Coast

Sugar Swirl Sweet Success for Pomeroys Pistol

Between Gulfstream Park and Tampa Bay Downs, the G3 Sugar Swirl was the biggest race of the weekend in Florida. The G3 race was complemented by a trio of minor stakes races, two for two-year olds and the third for older fillies and mares.

 

Contested at 6 furlongs on the dirt, the G3 Sugar Swirl at Gulfstream Park was for fillies and mares age 3 and up. Pomeroys Pistol (Pomeroy—Prettyatthetable, by Point Given), who finished 4th in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint, beat the Breeders’ Cup bounce to prevail by two lengths. The Pomeroy filly stalked the pace, was eased out by jockey Javier Castellano for the stretch run, collared Pica Slew nearing the sixteenth pole, and drew clear under urging. Pica Slew, who took over from Third Chance leaving the turn, ran the half in 44.80 before succumbing to the winner’s drive. Strike the Moon, Catch a Thief, Indulgence, Third Chance, Moontune Missy, and Roman Treasure rounded out the field. Today’s win is the fourth of the year for the three-year old filly.

In addition to today’s race, Pomeroys Pistol also won the G2 Forward Gal Stakes, the Just Smashing Stakes, and the G2 Foxwoods Gallant Bloom Handicap. She has also notched three 2nd place finishes: the G3 Old Hat Stakes, the G1 Prioress Stakes, and the G1 Test Stakes. She complemented those with a third in the G2 Davona Dale Stakes. Pomeroys Pistol’s name has been floated around in Eclipse Award for Champion Female Sprinter discussions, but I do not think she has done enough to earn the award. Her pair of G2 and pair of non-graded stakes races do not compare to Turbulent Descent’s (Congrats—Roger’s Sue, by Forestry) two G1 and one G2 victories. The Congrats filly is 3-2-0 in 6 starts this year, with her only off the board finish coming after a troubled trip in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.

 

Luke of York (Put It Back—Gion, by Meadow Monster) resurfaced in the Inaugural Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs after being scratched from last week’s Spectacular Bid Stakes at Gulfstream. The son of Gion finished 4th as the favorite. Angelofdistinction, the second longest shot in the field, held off Wildcat Creek by a head despite being bumped by the latter. Dangerous Trick stalked the pace, drifted out, and slowly gained on the leaders late to miss second place by a neck. Luke of York was a fast closing fourth while missing out on everything by about a length. Had the race been even just a half a furlong longer, he probably would have won it. As it was, the colt ran out of room at the wire. Winningisgood faded after the half, Pete Distinction dueled with Wildcat Creek to midstretch before faltering, and Straight Fax broke slowly and trailed the entire race. Luke of York’s Inaugural Stakes loss was the first loss of his career.

 

The Sandpiper Stakes, the second stakes race on Tampa Bay Downs’ Saturday card, was a 6 furlong affair for 2-year old fillies and was contested on dirt. Quick Flip (Speightstown—Motel Lass, by Bates Motel), the third choice in the field of eleven, tracked pacesetter Red Hot Doll from the second position before making her move in the stretch and kicking clear for the win. Red Hot Doll set fractions of 22.09 and 45.22 before fading to finish a respectable fourth. Blue Forty made a bid for the win from mid-pack but was held off by a length and a half by the winner. Live Every Day missed the place by a neck. The rest of the field finished as follows: Venetian Sonata, Given Enchantment, Grand Entry, All American Star, Silver Arch, Vicarious Won, and Endless Date, who was stopped but still finished the race. Quick Flip is the latest of Speightstown’s progeny to notch a win, and her Sandpiper victory made her a perfect 3 for 3.

 

The South Beach Stakes rounded out the weekend for the Florida stakes races. The seven and one half furlongs turf race was for fillies and mares aged three and upward. The start was good for all except Abuela, who stumbled at the start, and Mutually Benefit took the early lead, meandering through fractions of 25.64 for the quarter and 49.96 for the half. Long shot Hooh Why, whom I had not completely given up on, took over in the stretch but could not hang on for the win. Thai Haku [(IRE) Oasis Dream (GB)—Coconut Show (GB), by Linamix (FR)], the favorite, came from just off the pace and edged by Hooh Why late in the game to win by a length and a quarter. Trip for A. J., the third choice, finished third while pacesetter Mutually Benefit faded to fourth. Sea Road, Abuela, Aquitaine, Countess Lemonade, Exchange Funds, Crying Lightning (IRE), and Askbut I Won’ttell rounded out the field. Thai Haku’s South Beach win was her first victory in 7 starts this year. Overall, she has three wins from seventeen starts.

 

As far as graded stakes races are concerned, things around Gulfstream and Tampa Bay Downs will be rather slow, at least for the next couple of weeks. Gulfstream has a few ungraded stakes races coming up, but another graded stakes race will not be run until New Year’s Eve. The G3 Mr. Prospector Stakes for three year olds and upward will be contested at 6 furlongs on dirt. Race goers at Tampa Bay Downs will have to wait even longer for another graded stakes race, though. The next graded stakes race at Tampa will be the G3 Sam F. Davis Stakes on February 4. The mile and a sixteenth race will likely draw several Kentucky Derby hopefuls since the race is traditionally used as a prep race for the most prestigious race for three-year olds.

 

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Older Comments about Sugar Swirl Sweet Success for Pomeroys Pistol...

Capper, I will certainly be keeping my eyes on her in 2012. It could be that we're looking at next year's top female sprinter.
Last year Pameroys Pistol looked to me as a one-dimensional front runner, but its nice to she has the ability to relax and finish. It looks like big things could be coming her was in 2012.
I would say that the bounce is about 50/50. Flat Out followed up his 5th place BC finish with a 3rd place finish in the Clark, Ruler On Ice fell from 3rd in the BC to 5th in the Clark, and Headache posted a 6th in the Clark after his 12th in the BC. Weemissfrankie probably would have won yesterday had it not been for her stumbling at the start and injuring herself at some point in the race. A good argument could probably be made for either side.
I think more horses may improve off the BC this year because that CD track was reported to be have had deep thick mud on which some horses did very little running.
It was a dominant performance yesterday by Pomeroys Pistol and one that clinched her a spot as one of the five fillies on my Champion Female Sprinter poll on ZATT. Personally, I think Musical Romance is not getting enough love right now ... five stakes wins, including the Breeders' Cup, should have her at least in the discussion.
  • Floridaf · Musical Romance is definitely in the discussion in my books, but I think the award is Turbulent Descent's to lose. Musical Romance only has a G2 and 3 non-graded stakes to go with Breeders' Cup win. Turbulent Descent consistently turned in stellar performances at the highest levels. · 1078 days ago

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Meet Ashley Tamulonis
  
 

Despite growing up in a non-horse racing state, Ashley has been a fan of the sport since a young age. Her love for horse racing was fostered through the kids’ book series Thoroughbred by Joanna Campbell, and it was her love of reading and horses that led her to educate herself on the ins and outs of the sport. Since becoming actively involved in the industry just a few short years ago, Ashley has had the opportunity to meet many important players in the industry, attend the Eclipse Awards, see personal favorite Mucho Macho Man race twice in person, and get to personally meet and befriend many of the fantastic fans and horsemen involved in the sport.

 

Before joining Horse Racing Nation, Ashley created her own blog Wired with Ashley Paige. The idea to venture into the world of blogging came to her when she realized that she had much to say about horse racing and no one to say it to at the time. Ashley began her time with Horse Racing Nation blogging as The Florida Filly. Using that moniker, she mainly covered racing in South Florida but also blogged about nationwide racing, industry issues, and from time to time offered her opinion on how various changes could be beneficial to the industry as a whole. A move north to New Hampshire began both a new chapter in both Ashley's personal life and professional life. She currently pens the new From Coast to Coast blog for HRN, which is simply a revamped version of The Florida Filly. Don't let the new look and name change fool you, though. Ashley still brings to the table the same great coverage as From Coast to Coast as she did for The Florida Filly. Ashley also participates as a voter in the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Polls.

 

An alumni of Macon State College, Ashley is from Central Georgia but is currently living in New Hampshire with her husband Chris and their two sons Charlie and Michael. A stay-at-home mom, Ashley juggles parenting with blogging and her other passions. Aside from horse racing, Ashley is a fervent football fan, enjoys reading and studying history, and hopes to someday author a historical work covering the Tudor period as well as biographies of horse racing’s stars, equine and human alike.