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Breeders Cup 2015

Judy the Beauty Wins Rancho Bernardo

Judy the Beauty wins 2014 Las Flores.
Photo: Benoit Photo

Ultra consistent Judy the Beauty, considered by many observors the best female sprinter in the country, lived up to her reputation Sunday with a dominating victory in the featured Grade III $150,000 Rancho Bernardo Handicap.

Sent postward the 6-5 second choice to the 4-5 favored defending champion, Reneesgotzip, Judy the Beauty and jockey Mike Smith bided their time until the stretch where they rallied to win by 1 ¼ lengths in 1:15.63 for the 6 ½ furlongs over Del Mar’s main track while carrying topweight of 125 pounds.

Worse than third only once in her previous 16 race career when she fourth in the Humana Distaff on Kentucky Derby Day May 3, her most recent outing, Judy the Beauty recorded her eighth career triumph. She also has seven seconds and one third. First money of $90,000 increased her earnings to $1,112,122.

Reneesgotzip, packing 124 pounds and piloted by Corey Nakatani, was expected to go to the front from the gate. However, her performance was compromised when she bobbled at the break, conceding the early lead to the 12-1 longshot, Amaranth.

Reneesgotzip, who hadn’t run since finishing in a deadheat for second behind champion Mizdirection in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint last November at Santa Anita, rallied to contend for the lead in the upper stretch but faltered and wound up third, 2 ¾ lengths behind runner-up Madame Cactus. Amaranth was fourth and last.

Withdrawn from the original line-up were Fashion Plate and Sagebrush Queen.

Judy the Beauty, a Canadian-bred five-year-old mare by Ghostzapper, is owned and trained by Wesley Ward. She returned $4.60 and $2.60, while Madame Cactus paid $3.60 to show. With only four runners, there was no show wagering.

In the day’s supporting headliner, the $150,000 Solana Beach Handicap for older California-bred fillies and mares, 9-1 outsider Heat Du Jour and jockey Kent Desormeaux charged from off the pace to win by three lengths in 1:34.73 for the mile on the infield grass course.

Qiaona nosed out 8-5 favored Kathleen Rose for second, with Star Field another half-length back in fourth.

Heat Du Jour, owned by the partnership of trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, Mark Schlaich and George Todaro, was claimed for $32,000 in late May and earned $85,500 Sunday. The four-year-old Unusual Heat filly paid $21.40, $8 and $5.20. Qiaona returned $7.60 and $4, while Kathleen Rose paid $2.80 to show.

In the Pick Six, there were nine perfect tickets and each paid $62,287.         .

With a carryover of $106,844 from Saturday and $828,344 in “new” money bet Sunday, the total Pick Six pool was $935,188.

Sunday’s attendance was 14,713.


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