Trainer Todd Pletcher reported Sunday morning that Princess of Sylmar, heroine of the Grade 1 Beldame, Grade 2 Kelso Invitational Handicap winner Graydar, Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup runner-up Palace Malice and the rest of his Super Saturday representatives all returned from their efforts in good order.
was particularly pleased with the performance of 3-year-old Princess of
Sylmar, who in her first outing against older horses upended two-time
Eclipse champion Royal Delta in the 1 1/8-mile Beldame, earning a 105
Beyer Speed Figure.
time you take a 3-year-old and run against older horses for the first
time and you're able to win, it's a great achievement," Pletcher said.
"When the horse that you beat is Royal Delta, it's an even greater
accomplishment. It further enhanced Princess of Sylmar's reputation and
took what everyone recognized as a remarkable 3-year-old season to
another level. We've been blessed with quite a few good fillies, but
certainly her 3-year-old season stacks up pretty well with anyone's."
in Pennsylvania by Ed Stanco, Princess of Sylmar began her career at
Penn National and next won three straight races over the inner track at
Aqueduct, including the Busher and Busanda stakes. After finishing
second to subsequent dual Grade 1 winner Close Hatches in the Grade 2
Gazelle, Princess of Sylmar upset the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, romped by
six lengths in the Grade 1 TVG Coaching Club American Oaks and came home
a 2 ½-length winner in the Grade 1 Alabama.
what makes racing such a great sport," said Pletcher. "You take a guy
[Stanco] that literally breeds his first mare and gets Princess of
Sylmar, who's able to compete with all of the biggest horses in the
country, and run against and beat a filly that cost, what, $9 million?
It's what's cool about the game, that one from modest beginnings can
beat one like that."
said a decision would not be made for some time on whether to
supplement Princess of Sylmar to the Breeders' Cup Distaff.
the way yesterday's races are positioned, five weeks out from the
Breeders' Cup, it gives us time to sort out how everyone is doing and
how everyone came out of the races," he said. "Hopefully we can sit back
and let them tell us what the right decision is."
following the Beldame, Graydar came off a six-month layoff and earned
an all-fees-paid trip to the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile with a solid
victory in the Kelso, earning a 103 Beyer.
broke a step slow but was able to position himself quickly," said
Pletcher. "With five weeks and hopefully a good, steady series of
breezes leading up to the [Dirt] Mile, I think he has room to improve."
Belmont Stakes winner Palace Malice led a trio of Pletcher trainees in the Gold Cup, in which Brazilian import Vitoria Olimpica finished fourth and Grade 1 Whitney Invitational Handicap winner Cross Traffic was seventh after a disastrous start.
kind of did a spread-eagle coming out of the gate; remarkably, he did
not grab himself or pull a shoe," said Pletcher. "His chances were
eliminated at the beginning, so you just have to draw a line through it
and stick with the original plan, which right now would be the Breeders'
Vitoria Olimpica, for only his third start in the United States it
was a very good race, and we're very, very pleased with Palace Malice,"
he added. "He showed up and ran a very good race yesterday. Being a May
foal, there's more to come, I hope."
The trainer reported that Sunday morning breezes for spectacular maiden winner Havana (four furlongs in 49.88) and Grade 1 Spinaway runner-up Stopchargingmaria
(4f, 49.24) over the Belmont Park training track went "very well" and
the 2-year-olds were on schedule for upcoming engagements next Saturday
in the Grade 1 Foxwoods Champagne and Grade 1 Frizette, respectively.
For the Grade 1 Jamaica, Jack Milton went four furlongs in :49.63 and Notacatbutallama breezed four furlongs in 50.63 in Saratoga.