Keith Plaisance’s Palazzo Babe,
away fastest but allowed to settle behind the early leader,
regained command in mid-stretch and drew off for a 4 3/4-length tally in
Friday’s Fair Grounds opener, a $51,000 filly and mare allowance and
optional $40,000 claiming sprint that served
as the richest event of the evening during the third Starlight
Racing program of the New Orleans Thoroughbred racing season.
The dash for members of the distaff set was scheduled for the
Stall-Wilson turf course
but decimated by scratches to a field of four and run at 5 1/2-furlongs
over a sloppy main track following afternoon showers throughout the
Eddie Johnston and ridden by John Jacinto, Palazzo Babe paid $7.40 and $3.20, toured the distance in 1:04.63 and increased her career earnings to $132,284 with her fifth
career victory in 22 lifetime starts.
Steve Markwell and Samuel Froedge’s
Backside Blackie, allowed
to settle, rallied in the stretch to be easily second best, paying $3.40
while finishing 10 1/4-lengths to the good of Andrew and Christina
Bloemer Girl, who made the pace with early splits of 22.97 and 46.26 before tiring suddenly in the final furlong.