(from Belmont Park report)
Flashing, passed by 6-5 favorite Saarlight in the lane, fought back in the middle of the track to win the $200,000 Nassau County Stakes (gr. II) (VIDEO) by 1 1/4 lengths at Belmont Park May 2.
The Darley Stable’s 3-year-old filly Flashing was making her Belmont Park debut for trainer Tom Albertrani after winning three of four career starts at Aqueduct.
A daughter of 1992 Belmont Stakes winner and Horse of the Year A.P. Indy, Flashing took the lead from the rail on the muddy, sealed track and was quickly engaged by Saarlight. They opened a huge lead over their three rivals, setting a pace of :22.14, :44.63 and 1:09.73.
Saarlight, who had won her last two starts after losing her debut race by a neck, pulled away to a clear lead in the lane. As the wire got closer, however, so did Flashing. Jockey Javier Castellano moved her to the outside of her rival and she rolled home to win in 1:23.59.
“I think she was a little intimidated being on the inside early on,” Castellano said. “At the quarter-pole, when it looked like the other horse was trying to open up, I took my time and put her on the outside. When I did that, I think it was the key to the race -- to go outside and let her run free.”
Albertrani has an ambitious plan for Flashing for this summer. If all goes well, he plans to run her back on Belmont Stakes Day, June 6, in the $300,000 Acorn (gr. I) for sophomore fillies at a mile. That race will be a dandy, as Flashing will meet Rachel Alexandra, a jaw-dropping, 20 ¼-length winner of the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) May 1 at Churchill Downs.
Albertrani welcomes the challenge.
“I was only concerned about the (Nassau County) distance,” he said. “She’ll be a much better filly going over a mile. This was a last-minute decision and we decided to take advantage of the short field.”
Albertrani said the $300,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I) for three-year-old fillies at 1 1/4 miles on July 25 would be another option.
“We’ll see how she comes out of it and make those decisions later,” he said.
It was 6 1/4 lengths back to Haley’s Lolipop, who necked stablemate Maryville for the show. Frolic’s Dream was last.
Flashin earned $120,000 while paying $6, $2.70 and $2.40. Saarlight returned $3.20 and $2.20. Haley's Lolipop paid $2.80 to show.