Purely Hot wins the 2014 Whimsical Stakes.

Purely Hot wins the 2014 Whimsical Stakes.

Michael Burns

Purely Hot Powers to Whimsical Success

Former claimer continues successful run for new connections at Woodbine April 26.

Purely Hot, a former claimer who once dared to look champion Groupie Doll in the eye, earned her first graded stakes victory and continued success for her new connections April 26 at Woodbine. (VIDEO)

Making her second start off a winter layup, the 6-year-old daughter of Pure Prize closed into a hot pace to capture the $144,342 Whimsical Stakes (Can-III) on the all-weather track at the Toronto oval, defeating recently crowned Canadian champion female sprinter Youcan'tcatchme in the process.

Purely Hot was a dynamo for trainer Nick Caruso and Tuozzo Racing last year after being claimed for $4,000 and reclaimed by her connections for a $10,000 tag when they lost her for $8,000. She won four straight races, including the Satin and Lace Stakes at Presque Isle Downs, then made Groupie Doll—the winner of $1.9 million and seven graded stakes at the time—work hard for a repeat victory in the Presque Isle Downs Masters (gr. II) by 1 1/2 lengths.

Purchased by Volt Resources at the 2013 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November sale for $225,000 after running fourth in the Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes (gr. II) at Keeneland, Purely Hot was fourth again in the Dec. 1 Bessarabian Stakes (Can-III) at Woodbine for new owner Unlimited Equine and trainer Tevis McCauley. She got a four-month rest at McCauley Farm near Nicholasville, Ky., after finishing 10th a week later in the Holiday Inaugural Stakes at Turfway Park.

The tough dark bay came into the Whimsical off a third-place run in an April 9 Keeneland allowance.
"Not at all disappointed (with that first start back)" said Alex McCauley, brother and assistant to Tevis. "We figured she would need the race and it set her up perfectly for this."

Purely Hot used a powerful stretch run to overtake pacesetter Goldstryke Glory in the six-furlong Whimsical with Chantal Sutherland-Kruse in the irons. Sutherland-Kruse picked up the mount from Eurico Rosa da Silva who was injured in a paddock accident one race prior to the feature event.

Quick from the gate, Goldstryke Glory blasted through splits of :22.38 and :44.69 with Youcan'tcatchme pinned to her flank, a gap of seven lengths separating them from Purely Hot back in third. The mare came running with an explosive kick off the far turn, overtaking the pacesetters in the final furlong for a 3 1/2-length win in 1:09.69. United States grade I winner and Canadian champion Spring in the Air closed for second over Mekong Delta.
"She was easy to ride," said Sutherland Kruse. "We figured the track was playing a little stalking today and it all worked out. When she wanted to run it was great. She just took off."
Bred in Maryland by Dr. and Mrs. A. Leonard Pineau out of the Kissin Kris mare Wood Not, Purely Hot increased her earnings to $409,525 and improved her record to 12-3-4 from 29 starts. She returned $15.10, $5.60 and $3.60, while Spring in the Air brought $3.80 and $2.50. Mekong Delta paid $4.30 to show, while Goldstryke Glory, Youcan'tcatchme, and Sounds of the City completed the order of finish.