Daring Kathy Runs Away With My Charmer

November 22, 2014 01:07pm
First race - Gulfstream Park West (10-8-14).
Photo: Gulfstream Park West

There were some significant questions facing Daring Kathy prior to Saturday’s $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (G3) at Gulfstream Park West. Facing older horses for the first time, the 3-year-old filly would be traveling farther than she ever had in her third try at a graded stakes.
Halfway through the 1 1/8-mile turf race, trainer David Fawkes already had his answer. Given a perfect ride by jockey Abdiel Jaen, Daring Kathy coasted through comfortable early fractions and drove away late for a 1 ¼-length victory.
It was the sixth victory in nine starts this year for Daring Kathy and fifth in seven tries since being moved to the grass by Fawkes in March. All five of her turf wins have come in her native Florida, the last two during GPW’s Fall Turf Festival meet.
“It was easy for me,” said Jaen, aboard for four of Daring Kathy’s wins, all turf stakes. “I was the lone speed. I went for it and was able to control the race. The pace was great. The filly gave me the confidence because every time I let her go, she wants to run.”
Sent off at 9-2 in the 10-horse field, Daring Kathy ($11.80) broke from post eight and was taken right to the lead by Jaen, cruising through a quarter-mile in 24.96 seconds, a half-mile in 51.80, and six furlongs in 1:16.24.
Turning for home, Daring Kathy began to pull clear as Cushion, steadied early in the race, came running late for second by a nose over 22-1 long shot Lilbourne Eliza. They were followed under the wire by Magic of Reality, 7-2 favorite Angelica Zapata, The Blonde Peque, Merilore, Shy’s Aly, Triple Arch and Clearbrook.
“He rode her perfect,” Fawkes said of Jaen. “When I saw them go in almost 25 [seconds] and then in 51 and change, I was like, ‘Oh my God. It’s over.’ He hadn’t even asked her to do anything. She did everything he asked the whole race.”
Bred and owned by John Eaton and Steve Laymon, Daring Kathy ran 1 1/8 miles in 1:52.70 on a grass course rated good. In her only other try on non-firm turf, the daughter of Grade 1 winner Wildcat Heir was third in the Ontario Colleen (G3) in August at Woodbine.
“You’re always worried about older horses and all the rain, but we got the opportunity to go out there and look at the turf course and the course looked in great shape,” Fawkes said. “It was the reason we raced. We weren’t running this morning. We wanted to see how soft it was. For all the rain we had, they did a very good job on the turf course.”
Daring Kathy earned $73,900 for the victory to push her career bankroll to $356,366 including wins in the Honey Ryder, Starfish Bay and Cellars Shiraz stakes. Saturday’s triumph was particularly special for the filly’s namesake, John Eaton’s wife, Kathy.
“Being named after me and winning today on my birthday,” she said. “This was the perfect birthday present.”
Source: Gulfstream Park Communications 


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