Unleashing a powerful late run through the stretch, Lady
Shakespeare came from last to first to win the 67th running of the
Grade 2, $150,000 New York at Belmont Park Saturday afternoon.
Bringing up the rear as Daveron led through early fractions
of 24.23 and 48.96, Lady Shakespeare remained last of four through a mile in
1:35.57. Asked to pick up the pace turning for home, she seized the lead
leaving the sixteenth pole and drew clear to win by 2¾ lengths.
Her final time for the 1¼ miles over Belmont’s firm Inner
Turf Course was 2:00.34.
“She makes you work for it, but she earns it!” said winning
jockey John Velazquez. “I just didn't want to be too far out of it with just
three horses in front of me. I kind of had to start halfway through the
backstretch just to make sure she didn’t stay too far back. At the quarter
pole, I hit her left handed and put her in the clear - it was like an
instant reaction, she went right to them. She was so quick, I couldn't believe
it. She got to the lead, her ears went up, and she knew what to do."
It was the second consecutive graded stakes win for Lady
Shakespeare, a 4-year-old daughter of Theatrical, who captured the Grade 3
Bewitch at Keeneland on April 22. She now has two victories and two
second-place finishes from four starts in stakes company this year, and boasts
a lifetime record of 7-2-1 from twelve starts.
“She loves to run,” said Sue Lorimer, assistant to winning
trainer Roger Attfield. “She’s kind of laid back early, but once she gets going
she’s all racehorse. Roger will see how she comes out of this race and go from
Lady Shakespeare, who races in the white, blue and yellow
colors of owner and breeder Charles E. Fipke earned $90,000 for her New York victory,
boosting her lifetime earnings to $495,608. Sent off as the 2-1 post time
favorite in the field of five, she returned $6.50.
Changing Skies completed the exacta and Ave, another
Attfield trainee, was third. Pacesetter Daveron faded to finish fourth. Gozzip
Girl stumbled badly at the break and unseated jockey Ramon Dominguez at the
start of the race. Both horse and rider walked off the course.