Trained by Kelly Breen for owners George and Lori Hall, Bold Union is coming off a 9 3/4-length win as the favorite in Belmont Park's Astoria Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs June 29. The speedy daughter of Dixie Union broke in with a 10 3/4-length triumph over maiden allowance fillies going five furlongs at Monmouth Park June 1.
A strong performance in the Adirondack could mean a shot at Saratoga's Spinaway Stakes (gr. I) over seven furlongs Aug. 31 for Bold Union, a $75,000 Keeneland yearling buy last September.
Stewart Elliott, who has guided the bay filly in each of her starts, will be at the controls once again, breaking from post 2 in the 6 1/2-furlong Adirondack.
In the Astoria, Elliott secured an outside path while tracking a fast early pace. Bold Union kicked away at the quarter pole to win in a gallop.
The victory was thoroughly convincing, enough so that only one filly from the Astoria is back for more--third place finisher Golden Artemis. The Kiaran McLaughlin-trained daughter of Malibu Moon was a debut maiden winner on a muddy track at Belmont before meeting Bold Union, whom she trailed by more than 13 lengths in the Astoria.
Garden District, winner of the Debutante (gr. III) for trainer Todd Pletcher in her most recent start June 29 at Churchill Downs, presents the most formidable obstacle to Bold Union in the Adirondack. Owned by Twin Creeks Farm, the dark bay filly is also by Dixie Union and sold for $240,000 at last September's Keeneland yearling sale.
Sent off as the 11-10 choice against nine rivals in the six-furlong Debutante, Garden District lost her footing at the start, but recovered well and was never in deep trouble. She took the lead in the stretch and won by a half-length. Garden District has won two of her three starts, all in Kentucky, with her lone blemish a second-place finish in the Kentucky Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs May 1.
Ron Winchell's Simplify, who finished third in the Debutante, only a half-length behind Garden District after being nipped by a head for the runner-up spot, also returns here for trainer Steve Asmussen. This will be the third start for the Pulpit filly, who won her debut May 1 versus maidens.
The Adirondack also includes a trio of flashy last-out maiden winners: the New York-bred Doremifasollatido, Pretty Prolific, and Mani Bhavan.
Pretty Prolific, a daughter of leading first-crop sire Lion Heart, tallied by 3 1/2 lengths in her debut for trainer James Baker.
Mani Bhaven, trained by Steve Klesaris, was also a first-out winner, smacking a five-furlong maiden field at Delaware Park by 9 1/4 lengths July 12.
Doremifasollatido beat a field of state breds by six lengths in her second lifetime start for trainer James Jerkens July 4 at Belmont Park.
$150,000 Adirondack Stakes (gr. II, Race 9, 5:30 p.m.), 2-Year-old Fillies, 6 1/2 Furlongs
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Dorothy's Essense (NY), 118, Jeffrey Sanchez
2. Bold Union (KY), 122, Stewart Elliott
3. Doremifasollatido (NY), 118, Eibar Coa
4. Simplify (KY), 118, Shaun Bridgmohan
5. Golden Artemis (KY), 118, Cornelio H. Velasquez
6. Garden District (KY), 122, John R. Velazquez
7. Pretty Prolific (KY), 118, Julien R. Leparoux
8. Mani Bhavan (KY), 118, Alan Garcia