Zee Zee Zooms to Edgewood Victory
Saddled by Bill Mott, Zee Zee broke from the rail, grabbed the lead early and never let go, holding well for a 1 3/4-length win following fractions of :24.57, :49.89, 1:14.59, and 1:38.51. Her final time for the 1 1/16 miles over a "good" turf course 1:44.73.
My Baby Baby finished second, three lengths in front of Magger Bags. Favored Grace and Power was another 1 1/4 lengths behind in fourth, only a nose ahead of Valentine Fever.
Ridden by Kent Desormeaux, who urged her with right-handed whipping in the stretch, second choice Zee Zee paid $8.40, $4.60, and $3.80. The gray or roan daughter of Exchange Rate scored for the third time in her six-race career. Her second added-money triumph was worth $101,397 and boosted her bankroll to $283,347.
Desormeaux said Mott told him to go to the lead because the field appeared to have little speed.
"She took it very easily," the jockey said. "She was in control and very attentive to my needs during the entire running, especially when I called on her.”
Zee Zee broke her maiden in her first outing last August at Saratoga and then was second in the With Anticipation Stakes at the same track. She followed those efforts with a victory in the Happy Ticket Stakes at Louisiana Downs, her third start on grass, and then turned in an eighth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) in her first try on dirt. In her only outing this year prior to the Edgewood, Zee Zee was fifth in the April 10 Beaumont Stakes (gr. II) over Keeneland’s synthetic Polytrack surface.
“She’s one of the barn favorites, so her winning is extra-sweet to everyone today," Mott said. "She’s a very nice filly. I don’t know where we’ll go with her next, but it definitely will be on turf."
Churchill officials delayed the horses leaving the paddock because of a downpour, but the race got off on time. As the field of eight fillies headed toward the first turn, there was a loud boom of thunder.
My Baby Baby, ridden by Edgar Prado, returned $4.60 and $3.40, while Magger Bags, under Calvin Borel, finished another three lengths back in third and paid $6.20 to show.
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