Four months after she wowed the racing world with a track-record victory in the Humana Distaff (gr. I) at Churchill Downs, Groupie Doll returned to action with another impressive effort in winning the $400,600 Presque Isle Downs Masters Stakes (gr. II) Sept. 8 in Erie, Pa. (VIDEO).
Groupie Doll, who captured the Vinery Madison Stakes (gr. I) by three lengths at Keeneland prior to her 7 1/4-length romp in the Humana Distaff May 5, has now three of six starts in 2012 with one second and two thirds. She currently ranks as the top female sprinter in the nation.
Able to track a fast pace from the near the rear of the 11-horse field at Presque Isle Downs, 7-10 favorite Groupie Doll swung into action when angled to the outside on the turn for home by jockey Rajiv Maragh. She charged home after getting the lead approaching mid-stretch for a 3 3/4-length victory.
The 4-year-old daughter of Bowman's Band was timed in 1:16.32 over the Tapeta racing surface in the 6 1/2-furlong test of older fillies and mares. Groupie Doll won in a driving rain storm that started during the running of race.
Groupie Doll won her third straight stakes this year for trainer Buff Bradley, who owns the chestnut mare along with his father Fred, Carl Hurst, and Brent Burns. The Bradleys bred the winner, who is out of the Silver Deputy mare Deputy Doll.
Kitty in a Tizzy was up late on the outside by a neck after ralllying from seventh at mid-stretch with Julien Leparoux aboard at 18-1 odds. She edged 96-1 shot Sally Sally and Ricardo Feliciano for third. It's Me Mom, who enjoyed a lonely lead for much of the journey while rattling off swift quarter-mile fractions of :21.70 and :44.65, settled for fourth, another neck behind.
The longshots created some major exotic payoffs even with odds-on Groupie Doll, who returned $3.40, $2.80, and $2.10, on top. Kitty in a Tizzy ($10.60, $8) was part of a $37 exacta, while Sally Sally ($26.80) completed an $892.80 trifecta. A $2 superfecta with 9-2 shot It's Me Mom was worth $6,153.80
Bradley said prior to the Masters that Groupie Doll had fully recovered from a strained ligament behind her left hock. She had sustained the injury shortly after returning to training from a six-week break following the Humana Distaff. The chestnut filly had been working well for her comeback at Churchill.
Carrying co-high weight of 123 pounds, Groupie Doll improved her career record to 7-3-2 from 14 starts with earnings of $927,850. The Master's victory was worth $240,000.
Sweet Cassiopeia finished fifth, followed by Atlantic Hurricane, Ariana D, Interrogate, Salty Strike, Bouquet Booth, and Holiday for Kitten. Holy Heavens scratched.