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Rapport Never Headed in Victory Ride


Rapport grabbed the lead coming out of the gate and never looked back as she streaked to a 3 ½-length victory over My Jen in the 8th running of the Grade 3, $100,000 Victory Ride on Saturday afternoon at Saratoga Race Course.


After zipping through an opening quarter-mile in 22.05 and a half in 44.54, the 3-year-old Songandaprayer filly shook off a challenge from Beyondallboundarys as the field of eight straightened for home and was never threatened thereafter as she cruised to the wire in 1:09.66 for the six furlongs over a fast track.


“The point was to make her relax because she has a lot of speed,” said winning jockey Martin Garcia. “The main point was relaxing and then get it from there. She looked like the only speed in the race. She just kept going.”


It was the third victory in four starts this year for Rapport, who carries the colors of Thoroughbred Legends Racing Stable, and first in a graded stakes. Sent to the barn of Hall of Famer Bob Baffert this year after spending her juvenile campaign with Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, she broke her maiden at Hollywood Park by 5 ¼ lengths and took a first-level allowance by 4 ¾ lengths before finishing fourth in the Grade 3 Azalea at Calder.


“When I saw the :22 first quarter I knew that was easy for her because she is just really fast,” said Baffert. “But it was really nice to get a graded stakes win on Travers Day. Just winning on a big day like this you feel like you won a Grade 1. And I gave her out to a lot of the fans earlier so that was good.” 


My Jen was up for second, 1 ¾ lengths ahead of Beyondallboundarys.


“She ran really well,” said Eddie Kenneally, trainer of the runner-up. “She got a little tired in the lane. She hadn’t run since January – bringing her back in a Grade 3 race was pretty ambitious, but I’m very proud of her performance.”


Katy Now, the slight favorite in the field of eight, was fourth, followed by Simply Spiteful, and Worstcasescenario, while Sister Dawn and Touching Beauty, who dead-headed for last.


“Speed is holding up today,” said Todd Pletcher, trainer of the beaten favorite. “She got outfooted around the turn, but she showed some interest down the lane.”


Rapport, the second choice in the field, returned $6.90 for a $2 win bet as she extended her record to 3-0-0 from six lifetime starts and lifted her earnings to $138,644 with the winner’s purse of $60,000. 



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