Eyes On Eddy and Taittinger Rose, the only horses entered in Saturday's $100,000 Suwannee River Handicap for the Gulfstream Park main track only, ran first and second in the sloppy going when the race was taken off the turf.
A grade III race for fillies and mares on the turf, the race loses its graded status pending a review by the American Graded Stakes Committee. Seven horses were scratched when the 1 1/8-mile event came off the turf.
Ralls and Foster LLC's 4-year-old filly Eyes On Eddy, the 13-10 favorite who led by four lengths in the stretch under Rafael Bejarano, dug deep to hold off Taittinger Rose and Cornelio Velasquez in the final stages for a half-length victory. Eyes On Eddy was drifting out late.
Trained by Paul McGee, Eyes On Eddy is a daughter of Touch Gold
who had won the My Charmer Handicap on the main track at Turfway Park Dec. 10 by 7 ¼ lengths. Eyes On Eddy, who paid $4.60, $3.20, and $2.40, crossed the finish line in 1:49:56 over the 'sloppy' track.
Taittinger Rose returned $3.60 and $2.40. Marchonin, with John Velazquez aboard, finished third, 9 ¾ lengths behind the runner-up, and paid $2.60.
Then came Cotopaxi and Elle Runaway in the slimmed down field of five.
Eyes On Eddy improved to 5-3-1 in 14 lifetime starts with earnings of $297,690.
"We hate for it to rain on a big day like this, but it worked out great for this filly in this stakes," McGee said.