It’s Tea Time picked up her first
victory on the main track with a decisive score at Saratoga Race Course in
Sunday’s Grade 3 Woodford Reserve Lake Placid for 3-year-old fillies.
Off as the odds-on favorite, It’s Tea Time trailed the field early
as her two opponents raced in tandem through leisurely splits of 24.37 and
48.99. After making steady progress on the far turn, It’s Tea Time took control
at the quarter pole and needed only minimal urging from Julien Leparoux to
report home a 7 ¼-length winner over Hatheer, who was 13 ½ lengths clear of
third-place finisher Triple Cream.
“I didn’t really have a preference where to have her in the
race,” said Leparoux. “She was most comfortable behind horses, so
we just settled in the back. She ran very well and was very relaxed. I
didn’t have any worries about the off track because I had breezed her on
the dirt before and she traveled over it well.”
It’s Tea Time, who returned $3.50 for a $2 win wager, traveled 1
1/8th miles in the slop in 1:54.52.
Ninth in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks in her only previous effort on
conventional dirt, It’s Tea Time entered the Lake Placid off a pair of
starts on the turf, a fourth in the Grade 3 Regret at Churchill Downs and a
victory in a Saratoga
“She ran on conventional dirt in the Kentucky Oaks, and she ran
pretty well,” said Arnold.
“She had the one hole in a 14-horse field, which didn’t work out
for her. I told Julien, ‘I don’t know how the race will play
because small fields can be funny, so do what you want.’ You’re
always happy to win a race here, any race.”
It’s Tea Time, owned by Alex G. Campbell, Jr., improved her
record to 3-2-0 from seven starts and earned $90,000 to boost her bankroll to $242,397.
The bay daughter of Dynaformer was bred in Kentucky by her owner.
Originally carded as a Grade 2 race on the Inner Turf Course, the
Woodford Reserve Lake Placid was automatically downgraded after it was
transferred to the main track, pending a final review by the American Graded