Nashoba's Gold became the 100th stakes winner for two-time leading sire Smart Strike, a 22-year-old son of Mr. Prospector who stands at the Farish family's Lane's End Farm in Versailles, Ky.
In the stretch, the half sister to three-time grade I winner Nashoba's Key charged clear of Diversy Harbor, who momentarily loomed a threat to her inside after getting through between horses. But Nashoba's Gold was too strong in a one-length triumph under Joe Talamo.
The Carla Gaines trainee finished the 1 1/8-mile test on firm turf in 1:48.06, earning her second win from three career starts. She captured her career debut Feb. 8 at the Southern California oval, going the Providencia distance, before Diversy Harbor defeated her by a half-length in the one-mile China Doll Stakes March 8.
The 5-2 second favorite for the Providencia, Nashoba's Gold was eager to race and pulled at Talamo as he settled her in fourth while Soresca
and Savings Account
set a pedestrain pace (:24.44, :48.44, 1:13.19) through six furlongs. Diversy Harbor, the 11-10 favorite, also pulled a bit before Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens got her to relax and positioned her in eighth.
Talamo moved Nashoba's Gold quickly outside of opponents on the far turn and angled her four wide into the stretch as One More
gained a brief lead. With Stevens looking for running room with Diversy Harbor, Nashoba's Gold put her head in front at midstretch and inched away en route to the win. Diversy Harbor gamely drove between horses but could not catch the winner and checked in second.
Talamo said he had a perfect trip.
"I had a lot of horse," he said. "I just wanted to keep her out of any trouble. I kept her three or four wide and everything worked out great and we were able to turn the tables today. She is a very special animal."
One More was third, 2 1/2 lengths farther back in the 10-horse field.
Nashoba's Gold returned $7.40, $3.40, and $2.60. Diversy Harbor paid $2.60 and $2.40, while third-place finisher One More was worth $4.20.
A homebred belonging to Warren Williamson, a stalwart in California's Thoroughbred industry, Kentucky-bred Nashoba's Gold is out of the Caerleon mare Nashoba.