After missing narrowly in her last two grade I attempts, Gypsy's Warning broke through by rallying to win the $250,000 Matriarch (gr. IT) (VIDEO) Nov. 26 at Hollywood Park.
A close third in both the Aug. 21 Beverly D. (gr. IT) at Arlington Park and Oct. 2 Yellow Ribbon (gr. IT) at Hollywood, Gyspy’s Warning scored her first grade I win in the United States I her fifth start. The South African-bred 5-year-old was a two-time group I winner in her native land before being shipped to the states this season.
Team Valor International and Green Lantern Stables own the daughter of Mogok. She is trained by Graham Motion.
With Joel Rosario in the irons for the first time, Gypsy’s Warning raced from off the pace in the one-mile Matriarch as Wasted Tears, a four-time graded stakes winner this year, took the field of seven fillies and mares around the turf course. Wasted Tears clicked off fractions of :23.28, :47.35, and 1:10.83 and carried her lead into deep stretch with Rajiv Maragh aboard.
Camille C and Westwood Pride tracked her the whole way and were still in contention through the final furlong, but Gypsy’s Warning, who entered three-wide into the stretch, began to eat up ground from the center of the course and rolled by all of them inside the sixteenth pole to win by 1 1/4 lengths.
The final time on the firm turf was 1:34.01. Wasted Tears was a half-length in front of third-place Go Forth North, who rallied well under David Flores.
“I didn’t really take her back," said Rosario. “I just let her relax and get comfortable. She seemed like she was going to be a little rank, but she settled herself down. When I asked her to go, she really kicked."
Gypsy’s Warning earned her biggest victory in the 2009 South African Fillies’ Classic (Saf-I). She won in her U.S. debut on May 31 in the Eatontown Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park but had dropped three straight since then. The bay mare took a lead into the stretch of the 1 1/4-mile Yellow Ribbon but wound up falling 1 1/2 lengths short under Mike Smith.
Bred by Rathmor Stud, the winner is out of the Royal Chalice mare Gypsy Queen. She is now 7-0-7 from 16 starts with earnings of $491,862.
"She's a class, class filly," said co-owner Aron Wellman. "The only thing we told Joel was to get her to relax because she only has about a quarter of a mile burst so don't use her too early. He was sitting on a bomb at the three-eighths pole. That's a legitimate grade I filly."
Secret Gypsy’s paid $9.80, $4.20, and $3.20 as the third choice. The exacta (1-7) returned $28 and the trifecta (1-7-5) was $68.90 for $1.
Westwood Pride was fourth, followed by Camille C, Lilly Fa Pootz, and favored Special Duty, who was last nearly the whole way.