Irish-bred filly Oregon Lady split horses in deep stretch and passed Trip for A. J. a few strides before the wire to claim her first graded stakes win in the $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT) (VIDEO) on Thanksgiving at Calder Casino & Race Course.
The 4-year-old daughter of Shamardal, based at Woodbine for trainer Roger Attfield, shipped into South Florida after scoring the Oct. 29 River Memories Stakes, which was her first black-type victory. This was his fourth win in seven starts this season.
Oregon Lady is owned by Harlequin Ranches and was ridden to victory by Paco Lopez. They covered 1 1/8 miles on the good turf in 1:52.82.
The winner was bred by Joan Murphy and is out of the Gone West mare Oregon Trail. She was sold for $146,130 at the Goff’s Orby Million and Sportsman’s yearling sale 2008.
Oregon Lady was kept off the pace through the early going while odds-on favorite Denomination
found herself on an unexpected lead. The pace was extremely slow, as Denomination coasted through splits of :26.58 and :53.11 under Joe Bravo. Callmethesqueeze
and Trip for A. J. stalked the leader for much of the way and by the time they reached the quarter-pole all three horses were side-by-side across the course.
Trip for A. J. inched to the front at the top of the stretch while putting away Denomination and Callmethesqueeze, but it was Oregon Lady that was her biggest threat. Taking advantage of an inside trip, Oregon Lady found a hole between Trip for A. J. and Denomination in deep stretch and struck the front in the final yards. She won by a neck.
Trip for A. J. settled for second, a half-length in front of Snow Top Mountain
who closed for third.
Oregon Lady won for the fifth time in 12 career starts and upped her earnings to $266,178. She had finished off the board in her only two previous graded stakes appearances earlier this season.
“Usually, you would be concerned about soft ground, but in her case I was rather pleased that it came up that way. She’s handled it well before and did today," Attfield said. "She was a very slow-maturing 2-year-old, but is just now coming around to be a nice filly. I believe she’ll go longer distances when we ask her. We’ll look for something at Gulfstream for her next.”
She paid $7.80, $5, and $3.20. The exacta (7-3) returned $41 and the trifecta (7-3-1) was worth $186.
Denomination was fourth, followed by Callmethesqueeze, Grecian Maiden, and Performing.