favored Judy the Beauty, idle since running second to multiple Eclipse
Award winner Groupie Doll in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare
Sprint Nov. 2, showed her class in winning Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000
Las Flores Stakes at Santa Anita by 4 ¾ lengths, negotiating six
furlongs in 1:08.22.
Photo: Benoit Photo
Owned and trained by Wesley Ward, Judy the Beauty shipped in from her
Gulfstream Park base and was ridden by John Velazquez, who sat a close
second into the far turn and collared pacesetter Munnings Sister passing
the eighth pole.
“When we came out of (the gate) I gave her a little hit (with the
reigns) to come out running, and she did,” said Velazquez. “I wish I
didn’t do it because we ended up being too close to the pace. It was a
perfect trip though and she handled it very well. I know she can get to
the lead and wait on horses, so I just showed her the whip and she went
on very nicely.”
A 5-year-old Ontario-Canadian-bred mare by Ghostzapper, Judy the Beauty
was off at 1-2 in a field of five older fillies and mares and paid
$3.00, $2.20 and $2.10. With the winner’s share of $60,000, she
increased her earnings to $825,757. Her overall mark now stands at
Assistant trainer Blake Heap noted the winner would be shipped soon to
Kentucky and pointed to a turf stake at the upcoming Keeneland meeting
Ridden by Luis Saez, eventual third place finisher Munnings Sister, who
shipped in from Gulfstream for trainer Barclay Tagg, was pressed by the
winner through fractions of 21.72, 44.23 and 55.98.
Heir Kitty, the second choice at 7-2 with Gary Stevens, was
next-to-last after the first quarter and rallied through the lane to
just touch Munnings Sister on the money, finishing second by a nose.
Heir Kitty paid $3.00 and $2.20.
Off at 9-2, Munnings Sister was extra game to the wire, finishing 3 ½
lengths in front of Warm Breeze and paid $2.40 to show.