Don Alberto Stable's Chilean import Guapaza took over from pacesetter Photo Call in early stretch, then was hard ridden to repel Suffused and narrowly win the $200,000 Fasig-Tipton Waya Stakes (gr. IIIT) Aug. 6 at Saratoga Race Course. Watch Video
A 5-year-old mare by leading Chilean sire Seeking the Dia, Guapaza won by a head and covered the 1 1/2-mile turf race for fillies and mares in 2:25.96 with Javier Castellano aboard. She raced well off the pace in sixth early, as Photo Call sprinted to a clear lead and set a quick tempo before throwing in the towel as she advanced into the stretch, where favorite Guapaza was handy to take charge.
A group II winner in her native country, she posted her first graded stakes win in the United States and provided meet-leading trainer Chad Brown a sixth stakes win—including the Fasig-Tipton Lure with Shining Copper two races earlier on the card—at the current Spa meet. The stakes double highlighted a four-win day for Brown.
After Photo Call laid down fractions of 23.28, 48.25, 1:13.04 and 1:37.98 for a mile, Guapaza went four-wide coming out of the turn and rallied to the front just outside the eighth pole. Suffused was third entering the stretch and challenged from the outside in a thrilling finish.
Guapaza, the last-out winner of the River Memories Stakes with Castellano at Belmont Park, paid $9, $4.50, and $3.30. Suffused returned $7.50 and $5, and Achnaha paid $7.
"She was a little farther behind this time, usually she positions herself (closer), but they came out running a little bit quick and I thought that was my best shot, to get behind horses," Castellano said. "It was great; the way she did it was amazing. Usually, she falls into position and this time, to come from behind and the way she finished, those kind of horses you take advantage of. You never know when you can use that and give your horse the best shot."
Guapaza, bred by Haras Matancilla from the Dushyantor mare Guampa, has an 8-6-4 career line from 22 starts and is 2-1-2 in five career starts since coming to the United States.
In speaking about his stable's performance thus far at the Saratoga meet, Brown said: "It's hard; it's very difficult here
"You have to have the right people help you. We all work together as a team, me and my staff. (We have) good horses, patient owners, and they're all in the different races on a different surfaces. When you try to set a plan up and hope for good weather and racing luck— they are so many things that have to go your way. This last stretch, a lot things have gone our way. We thrilled with today. Pretty much all of the horses fired today. There is a lot of planning that goes into each day here and each race. It feels good when a plan comes together."