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Moulin de Mougin rallies late in John C. Mabee

Moulin De Mougin Mabee 615 X 400
Photo: Benoit Photo
Though the Grade 2 John C. Mabee Stakes drew nine fillies and mares, only six would go to post over a Del Mar turf course just reopened this weekend after a string of injuries to begin the meet. Once the running began, Wishing Gate had things all her own way on the front-end, but it was long shot Moulin de Mougin, who rallied boldy up the inside to snatch the victory in the shadow of the wire.
Breaking from the outside and second to the inside posts, Cozze Up Lady and Wishing Gate went after the early leaders. When it became obvious that Wishing Gate was willing to fight tooth and nail for the lead, jockey Kent Desormeaux took up Cozze Up Lady and settled in behind Wishing Gate. With no further pressure, Wishing Gate was able to establish an easy and comfortable lead, loping through splits of :23.03, :47.73 and 1:12.55.
The field of six led by Wishing Gate and Cozze Up Lady raced in a staggered type formation, with Every Way, Miss Serendipity, Moulin de Mougin and Stormy Lucy following the early leaders. Aside from bunching together on the backstretch, there was no movement in the racing order until the field hit the far turn. Sensing the average pace, Corey Nakatani put Stormy Lucy to a drive, moving early to try to run down the leaders before they spurted away in the stretch. Despite the logic of the move, it did little good as the duo was not able to sustain the drive.
Meanwhile on the lead, Cozze Up Lady was confronting Wishing Gate again, but the Glen Hill Farm owned miss was stubbornly hanging on to the lead. While those two did battle toward the center of the course, Moulin de Mougin, who was dead last at the top of the lane, was weaving past rivals down toward the rail. Edging past Every Way left clear sailing for Moulin de Mougin, and the filly, with Mike Smith in the irons, wasted no time in taking it to Wishing Gate.
After holding off Cozze Up Lady, Wishing Gate did not have enough left to also fend off Moulin de Mougin, who inched by to win by ½-length. Jockey Drayden Van Dyke, who had the call aboard Wishing Gate, said after the race, “She ran hard. I did all I could do with her.”
Wishing Gate finished another ½-length ahead of Cozze Up Lady, and Stormy Lucy finished another length back in fourth. Every Way and post time favorite Miss Serendipity rounded out the order of finish. The stewards conducted an inquiry into the stretch run but concluded that Cozze Up Lady drifting out and into Miss Serendipity did not affect the order of finish.
Winning jockey Mike Smith, who celebrated his 49th birthday in style, mused, “I can’t recall winning a stakes on my birthday before. I usually don’t do good on that day. I’ve won a race or two before, but nothing like this. I had a good feeling about this filly today. Her last race was a good one (3rd in the Royal Heroine at Santa Anita on June 28) and Mr. (Richard) Mandella told me she’d really been doing well, which meant I could expect even more of her today. I sat back there in that pocket for as long as I could and then cut her loose. She’s got a terrific run for about an eighth of a mile and today she showed it.”
Final time for the 1 1/8 mile turf affair was a good 1:47.96. Sent off as the second longest shot on the board, Moulin de Mougin returned $18.40/$7.20/$4.20 off 8-1 odds. Wishing Gate, at 2-1, paid $4.80/$3.20, and Cozze Up Lady paid $3.20 off 4-1 odds. The $1 exacta was worth $39.90, the $1 trifecta returned $189.40 and the $1 superfecta paid $517.00.
By Curlin and out of the Avenue of Flags mare Cambiocorsa, Moulin de Mougin is a homebred for owner Ran Jan Racing, Inc. In grabbing her first graded stakes score, the bay filly improved her career record to 13: 4-2-2. The $150,000 winner’s share of the $250,000 purse bumped her total purse earnings to $312,910.
Winning trainer Richard Mandella reflected on his charge’s breeding after her big win. “This is a filly that keeps better as she goes,” he said. “Being out of the mare Cambiocorsa we kind of took it for granted she’d like 6 ½ furlongs on the turf, but after a little bit of that we decided the farther the better. The Curlin (sire) kind of comes out then, too.” 


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Meet Ashley Tamulonis

Despite growing up in a non-horse racing state, Ashley has been a fan of the sport since a young age. Her love for horse racing was fostered through the kids’ book series Thoroughbred by Joanna Campbell, and it was her love of reading and horses that led her to educate herself on the ins and outs of the sport. Since becoming actively involved in the industry just a few short years ago, Ashley has had the opportunity to meet many important players in the industry, attend the Eclipse Awards, see personal favorite Mucho Macho Man race twice in person, and get to personally meet and befriend many of the fantastic fans and horsemen involved in the sport.


Before joining Horse Racing Nation, Ashley created her own blog Wired with Ashley Paige. The idea to venture into the world of blogging came to her when she realized that she had much to say about horse racing and no one to say it to at the time. Ashley began her time with Horse Racing Nation blogging as The Florida Filly. Using that moniker, she mainly covered racing in South Florida but also blogged about nationwide racing, industry issues, and from time to time offered her opinion on how various changes could be beneficial to the industry as a whole. A move north to New Hampshire began both a new chapter in both Ashley's personal life and professional life. She currently pens the new From Coast to Coast blog for HRN, which is simply a revamped version of The Florida Filly. Don't let the new look and name change fool you, though. Ashley still brings to the table the same great coverage as From Coast to Coast as she did for The Florida Filly. Ashley also participates as a voter in the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Polls.


An alumni of Macon State College, Ashley is from Central Georgia but is currently living in New Hampshire with her husband Chris and their two sons Charlie and Michael. A stay-at-home mom, Ashley juggles parenting with blogging and her other passions. Aside from horse racing, Ashley is a fervent football fan, enjoys reading and studying history, and hopes to someday author a historical work covering the Tudor period as well as biographies of horse racing’s stars, equine and human alike.

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