G. Watts Humphrey’s sparkling filly One Caroline remained undefeated in five starts and continued to climb her way up the older filly-and-mare ranks when romping to a wire-to-wire 6 1/2-length victory in the $150,000 Rampart Stakes (gr. II) (VIDEO) March 29 at Gulfstream Park.
Like she did in both of her other wins this season, One Caroline broke on top and ran her rivals off their feet. The 4-year-old daughter of Unbridled's Song took a comfortable early lead by posting splits of :23.31 and :46.75 under Edgar Prado. A tightly-bunched group that included Hamsa, Sea Chanter, Striking Tomisue, and So Glitzy were all more than four lengths back through the backstretch.
One Caroline continued to set an aggressive pace through a 1:10.80 three-quarters and as they continued along the far turn, it was Ginger Brew who came with a challenging four–wide move to get within striking distance. But Prado sensed the pressure, gave a quick peek over his shoulder when coming out of the turn, and One Caroline put it into another gear. She quickly opened up her advantage once again in the final furlong and drew away for a resounding score.
“She did it all herself today," Prado said. "I just wanted to get her to the lead and let her go. This is a pretty special horse. There was no question today who the best horse was. I don’t ever want to be a hero, that’s not me. The easier the ride, the better for me.”
The final time for 1 1/8 miles on a track rated good was 1:48.88. Finishing second at 26-1 under Chris DeCarlo was Sea Chanter, followed by Ginger Brew. Striking Tomisue was fourth in a field of seven.
One Caroline entered the Rampart off a victory in the Feb. 20 Sabin (gr. III), which came one month after a 6 3/4-length allowance win in her 4-year-old debut. Both were one-mile scores on the same Gulfstream strip. The Rampart was her first try at two turns.
Trainer Rusty Arnold said One Caroline would run next in the Louisville Distaff (gr. II) on Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) day May 1 at Churchill Downs. The scary part is, she still has a lot to learn, he said.
"She’s going to have to figure out not to go right from the gate," Arnold said. "Once she got in front today, she handed (Prado) the bit and everything was good, but she needs to know that, if somebody outbreaks here, or somebody sends a ‘rabbit,’ we’re going to have to get her back. The talent is unbelievable. It’s a good problem to have to slow one down. She’s 17 hands. She couldn’t run at 2. She was so big, she wasn’t ready for it."
Bred in Kentucky by Payson Stud, One Caroline is out of the Broad Brush mare Powder. A $400,000 yearling purchase, she has already earned $226,396.
Sent off at odds of 3-5, One Caroline paid $3.40, $2.60, and $2.10. The exacta (3-5) returned $49.40.