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Parranda Sneaks Away in Suwannee River

Though she has run well outside of South Florida, Parranda showed again on Saturday why Gulfstream Park is her favorite track.            

The 5-year-old English Channel mare ran slow early and fast late, pulling away from the field for a two-length victory over Riposte in the $150,000 Suwannee River (G3), her fourth stakes win and first in graded company.            

It was also the sixth win in 11 lifetime starts at Gulfstream for Parranda, coming exactly three weeks after her triumph in the Sunshine Millions Filly & Mare Turf and three months following her score in the Sunshine Millions Filly & Mare Turf Preview.            

“She loves it here. I wish the meet wasn’t going to end,” winning trainer Rodolfo Garcia said. “The thing about this filly is every time she goes out, whether she wins or loses, she’s always going to be right there. It’s always a good effort. She’s never really run a dull race, and I hope she can keep the form she has now.”            

Breaking from the gate under jockey Jose Lezcano, Parranda went for the front in a field devoid of speed, leading through fractions of 25.12 seconds for a quarter-mile and 51.27 for the half, with 50-1 long shot Abbey Street alongside.            

After going six furlongs in 1:15.33, Lezcano picked up the pace on Parranda, who went the last three-eighths in 33.74 seconds to hit the wire in 1:49.07 for 1 1/8 miles on a firm turf course.            

“I checked out the race and did my homework, and didn’t see any speed,” said Lezcano, who picked up his second win of the day. “She broke clean and I tried to slow down the pace as much as I could. She’s the kind of filly, no matter what position she’s in, she’s going to finish. She has a lot of talent.”            

In her only previous graded stakes tries, she was fourth in the My Charmer (G3) at Calder on Dec. 7, beaten 1 ½ lengths, and fifth by 2 ½ lengths in the Matchmaker (G3) at Monmouth Park last summer.            

“There were a couple of horses that beat me before that were not in this race but there were a couple of other nice horses in there, and she did it convincingly,” said Garcia, who also captured Saturday’s opener with La Hija de Olga ($21.60). “We’ll see what happens now and look at our options.”           

Owned by Lone Stable, Parranda returned $6.20 as the 2-1 second choice in the field of eight. A Group 2 winner in her native England, Riposte saved ground along the rail and rallied late for second, a half-length in front of 8-5 favorite Abaco, a Grade 3 winner who was followed under the line by Malibu Yankee, Grade 2 winner Caroline Thomas, Ainsley and Abbey Street. Nicki Starshine was pulled up in upper stretch and vanned off the track.            

Parranda now has eight wins and $448,655 in purse earnings from 20 lifetime starts.            

“They have tried to sell her but at the end, something has happened,” Garcia said. “There was enough money, but at the end apparently something happened and they didn’t buy her. The price keeps rising. Now that you’ve won a Grade 3, the price is not the same.”

 

 

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