For the first time since 2007, neither division of the Florida Stallion Stakes at Calder Casino & Race Course will be swept as D'nied Permission charged by tiring first-leg winner Two T's At Two B to win the $125,000-estimated Affirmed Division (VIDEO) and Putyourdreamsaway was 7 1/2 lengths better than first-leg winner Candy Coded Kisses in the $125,000-estimated Susan’s Girl Division (VIDEO) .
Trained by Joe Calascibetta and ridden by leading local rider Luis Saez, Calascibetta Racing Stable’s D’nied Permission sat contently in fourth as an ambitious early duel developed between the unbeaten favorite Two T’s At Two B and the public’s second choice, Dixie High, with that pair running opening splits of :22.11 and :45.15 on a track still sloppy after a morning of heavy rain.
"I know the horse (jockey Eduardo) Nunez is on (Two T’s At Two B) is tough, and when the other horse (Dixie High) went with him, that was good for me," Saez said.
Two T’s At Two B disposed of Dixie High on the turn and opened up a three-length advantage at the head of the stretch, but the colt could never hold that margin through the wire, weakening in the final yards and giving way to D’nied Permission. The winner had to hold off a late-charging Joshua's Comprise to secure the victory while running seven furlongs in 1:26.03.
"I saw that the favorite was still going well, but when he came to mid-stretch, I could tell that he was starting to tire," Saez said. "And when I asked my horse to run, he was strong and gave me a little more and a little more. And with a sixteenth to go, I knew I was going to win."
Ignored at the betting windows when sent from the gate at odds of 21-1, D’nied Permission returned $45.20, $16.40, and $4.80 for his surprise victory. Joshua’s Comprise paid $19 and $5 for his equally shocking second-place performance, while Two T’s At Two B paid $2.10 in third.
Bred by Irish Eyes Stable and Verbarctic Farm, D’nied Permission has won two of his four career starts, while finishing second on two occasions. With his Affirmed Division triumph, the son of D'wildcat now boasts career earnings of $96,190.
One race after D’nied Permission quashed Two T’s At Two B’s designs on a Stallion Stakes sweep, Herbert and Ione Elkins’ Candy Coded Kisses suffered a similar fate when the Bill Kaplan-trained filly Putyourdreamsaway ran clear from that rival, and six others, to capture the Susan’s Girl.
Trained by Bill Kaplan, Putyourdreamsaway was forwardly placed during the early stages of the Susan’s Girl, though those tactics were employed by jockey Juan Leyva out of necessity rather than by design.
"She broke great, but she kind of got shoved into the fence by horses on the outside, and that kind of forced my hand a little because at that point I had to ask her just a bit so she could get closer," Leyva said. "But once I got out of that situation, she was really comfortable and got into a nice stride."
Putyourdreamsaway tracked pacesetter Jewel in the Sky from second through opening fractions of :22.58 and :45.85 charging to the front on the turn and then resisting a mild challenge from Candy Coded Kisses to win by a widening margin.
"After I got her in a good spot, I just had to wait and be patient with her," Leyva said. "And when it was time to run, she responded. She's a real nice filly."
Putyourdreamsaway paid $11, $5, and $3.40 for her victory. Candy Coded Kisses brought back $6 and $4.60 when second, while late-runner Capriccio Blue returned $12.40 when a never-threatening third.
Bred by Karen and Greg Dodd, Putyourdreamsaway is now a two-time winner in three career starts with earnings of $115,975.