Secret Gypsy kept her unbeaten record
over the Saratoga main track intact with a two-length triumph in Sunday’s
19th running of the Grade 2, $150,000 Honorable Miss Handicap for
fillies and mares.
Looking for a graded stakes victory to complement her maiden and
allowance victories at the Spa, Secret Gypsy settled in second off the flank of
One Smokin’ Lady, who inherited the lead after the expected pacesetter
Warbling missed the break. After the early leader began to backpedal as the
field turned for home, Secret Gypsy took command and maintained a clear lead to
“I knew my filly would be in a good place but when [Warbling] blew
the break, it put me up there,” said winning rider Jamie Theriot. “I
just was, ‘Well, I’m going to stay here’. From there, it was
just a matter of time because I was in a stalking position and let her run
through her lane. She finished very well.”
Hour Glass held off Warbling to finish second, while Pretty Prolific
and One Smokin’ Lady completed the order of finish.
Secret Gypsy, whose record stands at 7-2-2 from 16 starts, returned
$6.10 as the 2-1 second choice and covered six furlongs in 1:09.82. Including
the $90,000 winner’s share of the Honorable Miss purse, the 5-year-old
has earned $506,926 to date for owners Richland Hills Stable and John Kuehl.
After capturing the 2009 Grade 2 Distaff Handicap at Aqueduct, Secret
Gypsy went on a five-race losing streak before she regained the winning thread
last time out with a 4 ¾-length victory in the Saylorville at Prairie Meadows
“Her races and her confidence have been getting better,”
said winning trainer Ronny Werner. “Sometimes it’s hard to get
fillies back – she’s had some problems in the past and we were
working through that, mentally and physically. She’s done well here. I
wish it was a longer meet! She’s changed her style of running a little
bit this year. She’s starting to sit off a little bit more and relax
more, and that just comes with age.”
By Sea of Secrets, Secret Gypsy was bred in Kentucky by Norman Cheng.