Keertana, racing a
quarter mile farther than she had ever had before, deftly handled the stretch
out in the 15th running of the Grade 3, $100,000 Glen Falls
Handicap, the final stakes event of the 2010 meeting at Saratoga Race Course.
Second last time out in the one-mile De La Rose on August 4, Keertana
bided her time in seventh in the 1 3/8-mile Glens Falls behind fractions of 47.79 and
1:12.77. After commencing a steady rally along the hedge on the final turn, she
blew by Casablanca Smile under vigorous hand urging with a sixteenth to travel
and powered clear to score by 3 ¼ lengths, with odds-on favorite Forever
Together making a mild rally to finish an additional 1 ¼ lengths back in third.
“We were way back, then I had to
check, and after that I lost my whip,” said winning jockey Jose Lezcano.
“I said ‘Oh man, I feel so bad; I’m going to lose this
race.’ I love that my filly was able to win. When I asked her, she kicked
it up very well. She had plenty of gas left.”
Keertana, who in 2009 won the one-mile
Indiana Distaff and finished third in the Grade 1 Garden City, returned $12.80
for a $2 win wager as the 5-1 second choice and traversed the Inner Turf Course
in 2:12.73. Her record now stands at 7-5-4 from 19 starts.
“Her daddy won at a mile and a half,
and her mother’s father wanted to go a mile, so I figured a mile and
three eighths would be perfect,” said trainer Tom Proctor of the 4-year-old
Johar filly out of the Storm Cat mare Motokiks. “She was back a lot
farther [than I expected,] but when they went 47 and change, that was pretty
Proctor added that he is considering the Breeders’ Cup Filly and
Mare Turf on November 5 for Keertana, with a possible start in the Grade 1
Flower Bowl Invitational on October 2 in the interim.
Striking Dancer, Sweet and Flawless, Kiawah Cat, Go Ask Alex, and
Beauty O’ Gwaun completed the order of finish.