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Upperline Captures Dowager

Stone Farm, John Adger, Oak Crest Farm and trainer Michael Stidham’s Upperline prevailed after a protracted duel with Ciao Bella to win the 21st running of the $125,000 Rood & Riddle Dowager for fillies and mares by three-quarters of a length before a Sunday afternoon crowd of 19,134 at Keeneland.

Winner of the Bewitch (G3) here in the spring, the 5-year-old Upperline became the first horse to win the Bewitch and Rood & Riddle Dowager in the same year.

Ridden by James Graham, Upperline was content to rate off the pace of For the Win, who was tracked by Ciao Bella and jockey John Velazquez.

Approaching the far turn, Ciao Bella took over from For the Win, but Upperline moved with her and the two raced as a team the rest of the way with Upperline gaining the upper hand in deep stretch.

Upperline, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Maria’s Mon out of the Caerleon mare Snowflake (IRE), covered the 1½ miles on a firm turf course in 2:32.19.

The victory was worth $75,000 and increased Upperline’s earnings to $772,988 with a record of 25-9-5-4.

Upperline rewarded her backers in the sun-splashed crowd with payoffs of $6, $3.20 and $2.40. Ciao Bella returned $4.60 and $3.60 with Janicellaine (IRE) rallying for third another neck back under Julien Leparoux and returning $4.20 to show.

Defending Rood & Riddle Dowager champion Senada finished fourth and was followed in order by Bubbly Jane (BRZ), Thislilsoulofmine, Revelstoke, Maid of Heaven, Heart of Destiny, Charming She Is and For the Win.



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