Silent Eskimo raced just off the pace set by Perlinda and held on through the stretch to win the $200,000 Gardenia Handicap (gr. III) by 3/4 lengths Saturday at Ellis Park. Roza Robata closed well late to finish second, nipping Tap To Music at the wire by a nose. Ruby Surprise was another neck back in fourth, followed by Undermine, Perlinda, and Really Polish.
The $120,000 winner’s share of the purse puts Silent Eskimo over the $1-million mark for career earnings. The $22,000 earned by Tap To Music increased her earning over the same plateau.
Silent Eskimo (Eskimo—Slide Out Front, by Silent Review) is a John Franks homebred trained by Bobby Barnett. James Lopez booted home the winner, who completed the 1 1/8 miles in 1:50.56 over a fast track.
Prior to the Gardenia, Silent Eskimo finished second in the $106,000 Ellis Park Breeders’ Cup Handicap, after finishing off the board in the Fleur de Lis Handicap (gr. III), the Pimlico Distaff Handicap (gr. III), and the Louisville Breeders’ Cup Handicap (gr. III). As a 4-year-old she won the Falls City Handicap (gr. III) by 6 1/2 lengths over Let and finished second in the Fleur de Lis to Banshee Breeze. The win brings her career record to nine victories from 30 starts. (Chart, Equibase