Defeating four older fillies and mares, Juddmonte Farms' Close Hatches secured her third grade I with a front-running performance in the $588,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I) April 11 at Oaklawn Park.
Order of Finish
|Pos||Horse / Age / Sex / TrueNicks / Pedigree||Jockey / Trainer||Margin||Earnings|
|2||Dreaming of Julia||
Close Hatches will try to add a third top-level victory to her resume in the $600,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. I), in which she meets four opponents, including last year's winner On Fire Baby, April 11 at Oaklawn Park.
Centrique, one of three from trainer Marty Wolfson's barn, appears to be the one to beat in an evenly matched renewal of the $200,000 Inside Information Stakes (gr. II) March 22 at Gulfstream Park.
Favored at odds of 3-5 and making her first start of the season, Juddmonte's 4-year-old First Defence filly galloped wire to wire in the 1 1/16-mile test, taking rider Joel Rosario straight to the winner's circle March 15.
Don't Tell Sophia has sailed through the early part of 2014, but faces a stout test March 15 in the $200,000 Azeri Stakes (gr. II) against multiple grade I winner Close Hatches, On Fire Baby, and Flashy American.
Beholder's smashing victory in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) ensured her a second consecutive Eclipse Award. She was voted champion 3-year-old filly of 2013 over finalists Princess of Sylmar and Close Hatches.
E. Paul Robsham Stables' homebred Sweet N Discreet made a successful try at 1 1/8 miles at Gulfstream Park Jan. 18, taking the $300,000 Florida Sunshine Millions Distaff over Devil's Cave.
Devil's Cave, a two-length winner in her stakes debut over Florida-bred fillies last time out, will put her speed to the test in the $300,000 Florida Sunshine Millions Distaff Jan. 18 at Gulfstream Park.
Perhaps no Eclipse Award category overflowed with more talent than among the 3-year-old fillies of 2013. They performed admirably against each other and then went out and defeated the best of their older counterparts.
Godolphin Racing's Wedding Toast took charge at the start and held on for a head victory over hard-charging longshot Toasting in the $400,000 Comely Stakes (gr. II) Nov. 30 at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Aqueduct's Comely Stakes (gr. III) drew a field of 10 3-year-old fillies for a run at graded black type...and a $400,000 purse.
Smooth as silk under jockey Gary Stevens, Beholder vanquished both two-time champion Royal Delta and Princess of Sylmar while rolling to an open-lengths victory in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) Nov. 1.
Lenny Shulman updates the news of the day including track work by Royal Delta, Close Hatches, and Mucho Macho Man. watch video
Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott oversaw Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) contenders Royal Delta and Close Hatches as they stretched their legs at Santa Anita on Oct. 29 after arriving from New York the day before.
The Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) may only have a field of six, but they have created perhaps the most riveting puzzle in the entire series this year.
Trainer Bill Mott said he was happy with the final works by Royal Delta and Close Hatches at Belmont Park Oct. 26 before they head to California for the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I).
Led by champion Royal Delta and Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) contender Ron the Greek, horses conditioned by Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott got in their Belmont Park works Oct. 19 in advance of the Nov. 1-2 Breeders' Cup.
- By Steve Haskin
Steve offers some early thoughts on the Breeders' Cup. read blog
Six stakes races on the Sept. 29 Remington Park card are led by the Oklahoma Derby (gr. III) and Remington Park Oaks. Departing seeks a fourth derby victory and Marathon Lady her first stakes score in the Oaks.
Close Hatches secured a second straight grade I victory Sept. 21 when she passed Test Stakes (gr. I) winner Sweet Lulu turning for home and held off all challengers in the $1 million Cotillion Stakes (gr. I).
Grade I winners Sweet Lulu and Close Hatches will meet on the track for the first time when an accomplished group of 3-year-old fillies starts in the $1 million Cotillion Stakes (gr. I) Sept. 21 at Parx Racing.
Princess of Sylmar was much the best in the $294,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I), adding the July 20 Saratoga fixture to her earlier win in the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) this spring for King of Prussia Stable.
Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) victress Princess of Sylmar and Unlimited Budget, who recently ran sixth in the June 8 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), top a quality field of five for the $300,000 TVG Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I).
PORTER ON PEDIGREES, by Alan Porter
Leading commercial sire Unbridled's Song is still looking for his true heir as a stallion, and he may have found it in First Defence.
Close Hatches became Juddmonte Farms' newest grade I winner when she captured the $300,000 Mother Goose Stakes (gr. I) June 22 at Belmont Park, leaving heavily favored Dreaming of Julia behind on the turn and cruising home.
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