American Border, making her stakes debut in her 37th career start, charged along the rail to overtake 78-1 shot Le Cordon Bleu in deep stretch to win the $150,000 Violet (gr. IIT) (VIDEO) on the Meadowlands turf course in New Jersey Oct. 17.
Trained by Jason Servis for Mr. Amore Stable, American Border was guided to victory by Jose Lezcano at odds of 11-1. The 4-year-old daughter of Boundary--American Mambo, by Kingmambo, has won three in a row and four of her past five starts after Servis claimed her for $30,000 from Kenwood Racing at Monmouth Park on June 12.
Le Cordon Bleu, with Daniel Centeno aboard, set a solid pace on firm going in the 1 1/16-mile event for fillies and mares. She separated herself from her rivals in the homestretch by two lengths and threatened a theft of the first order. American Border trailed the field for the opening half mile, but benefited from a rail-skimming trip. She found plenty of room to launch her bid, getting up in the final strides to post a half-length victory.
Fractions were :23.59, :48.18 and 1:11.78, and they came home in 1:41.74. All Is Vanity, ridden by Alan Garcia, finished third.
Grade II winner Sharp Susan, the 3-2 favorite in the field of 12, broke through the gate prior to the start. After that, she stalked the pace for six furlongs before weakening to eighth.
American Border was coming off a nine-length win over an optional claiming allowance field at one mile in an off-the-turf race at Meadowlands on Oct. 2.
“Last time it was a four-horse field on the dirt and I figured it would be best to just send her,” Lezcano said, “but this filly loves the grass, so this time I figured I’d take her back and make one run. The pace set up nice for us. They left the rail open and we ran right through.”
American Border's eighth lifetime win was worth $90,000 and boosted her career earnings to $260,070. She has won six times on the turf in 20 starts.
“We claimed her knowing she had a great turf pedigree,” Servis said. “I kind of followed her a little bit in Florida (last winter) when I was down there. I had to shake for her and I won the shake. After her last race I was a little hesitant about bringing her back in two weeks. I was not thinking she was stakes material but now she’s looking pretty good. She’ll come to Florida with us this winter. I’m sure there will be some nice races for her.”
Herman Heinlein bred the bay filly in Kentucky.
American Border paid $24, $10.20 and $4.80, topping a $2 exacta worth a whopping $1,145.20. Le Cordon Bleu, trained by Michael Gorham, returned $67.80 and $24.40. Second choice All Is Vanity, was $4.20 to show.
Royalties, Cozzi Capital, Snow Cone, Marie Rossa (GB), Sharp Susan, Audacious Chloe, Seeking an Angel, Shytoe Lafeet, Exchanging Fire and Paradise Tonight completed the order. Paradise Tonight was pulled up on the far turn but walked off. Jenny Bean Girl scratched.