Street Band rallies to upset Guarana in Cotillion Stakes

September 21, 2019 05:04pm
Street Band rallies to upset Guarana in Cotillion Stakes
Photo: Taylor Ejdys/EQUI-PHOTO

Street Band, who had just one rival beat early in Saturday’s Grade 1, $1 million Cotillion Stakes, uncorked a massive rally to run down odds-on favorite Guarana and upset in Parx Racing’s signature race for 3-year-old fillies.

The Larry Jones-trained daughter of Istan, a Grade 2 and 3 winner earlier this season, made a major addition to her resume while punching a “Win and You’re In” ticket to the Breeders’ Cup Distaff.

Street Band ran behind a stiff pace — so fast, the speedy Serengeti Empress was out-legged by dueling Jaywalk (inside) and Bellafina (outside) into the far turn after they went in 22 3/5 and 46 1/5 to open proceedings.

Guarana got first run on the front-runners but couldn’t hold off Street Band, who struck at 7-1 and returned $17.40 under jockey Sophie Doyle. The final time was 1:44 1/5 for 1 1/16 miles.

Behind Guarana, Horologist ran third and Bellafina fourth.

Jones said the quick early fractions played into his filly’s hands. He also said her most recent effort running third at 10 furlongs in Saratoga’s Alabama Stakes (G1) gave her the stamina to pull clear in the Cotillion.

“Coming off that mile-and-a-quarter race, she shouldn’t have gotten tired (Saturday), and she didn’t,” Jones said. “I think that mile-and-a-quarter race getting under us probably was a good thing. It sure brought her home well here.”

Street Band won the Fair Grounds Oaks (G2) on March 23 to gain entry into the Kentucky Oaks. She placed sixth the first Friday in May, 13 ½ lengths back of winner Serengeti Empress.

Jones spoke to Horse Racing Nation in June at Ellis Park, saying his charted path for Street Band was July’s Indiana Oaks (G3), August’s Alabama and September’s Cotillion.

“When they put $1 million, it makes you want to go for it,” Jones said then of the Cotillion.

Street Band won the Indiana Oaks, was a respectable third Dunbar Road and Point of Honor in a rain-soaked Alabama, then became a Grade 1 champion Saturday at Parx.

The Cotillion victory earned Street Band a $600,000 paycheck. That money will be split between Doyle and a large ownership group that includes Jones, his wife Cindy, Ray Francis, Medallion Racing and MyRaceHorse Stable.

Jones also trained Street Band’s mare, Street Minstrel, and said the family “matures late.” Now he’s got a blossoming filly who Saturday became the first 3-year-old to earn a fees-paid berth into the Breeders’ Cup Distaff on Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park.

Street Band joins Entropia (Gran Premio Criadores), Midnight Bisou (Ogden Phipps and Personal Ensign), Elate (Fleur de Lis) and Ollie’s Candy (Clement L. Hirsch) as runners to claim “Win and You’re In” races in the division.

Two Breeders’ Cup Distaff Challenge Series races remain: the $200,000 Zenyatta Stakes (G2) on Sept. 29 at Santa Anita and the $500,000 Spinster Stakes (G1) on Oct. 6 at Keeneland.

Guarana's defeat Saturday was the first of her four-race career. The Chad Brown trainee is a two-time Grade 1 winner, scoring top-level wins this summer in Belmont Park's Acorn Stakes and Saratoga's Coaching Club American Oaks.

"We had everyone where we wanted them," Brown said. "She was just second best today. She just won a Grade 1 going two turns so I can’t blame that (the distance).

"Is she best around one? Probably. I can’t make any excuse. We gave her a little breather since the Coaching Club and maybe she was a little short as well. New track, too. But hats off to the winner. She really ran well. Both fillies did.”

Horologist's third-place effort in the Cotillion followed a last-out upset of Jaywalk in the Monmouth Oaks (G3). She beat that one again Saturday, along with Grade 1 winners Bellafina and Serengeti Empress.

“We were following the favorites all the way," jockey Luis Saez said. "Half-mile away I thought we were going to get them. They just got away from us late."


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