Heavy choice Tight Precision, closing fast on the outside, surged past Bootleg Annie and Pretty Unusual close to home to post her first stakes victory in the $300,000 Sunshine Millions Filly & Mare Turf at Santa Anita Jan. 30 (VIDEO).
The Florida-bred invader from the Thomas Proctor stable enjoyed a perfect stalking trip under Joel Rosario and finished in 1:47.27 over firm going while registering her third consecutive win, all on turf. The 5-year-old daughter of Pure Precision scored by 1 1/2 lengths over the pacesetting Bootleg Annie, who re-rallied late to pip the tiring Pretty Unusual by a nose for the runner-up spot.
“I thought they both had a nice chance," said Proctor, who also saddled fourth-place finisher Closeout, who finished 2 3/4 lengths behind Tight Precision. "I thought the filly that won had the better trip. I’ve got no thoughts right now about what might be next for her. It’s just good to win a $300,000 race, and it’s nice to win in California. I haven’t been that lucky out here.”
Proctor formerly trained in California, but left in 2001.
Bootleg Annie, ridden by Garrett Gomez, set moderate fractions (:23.24, :47.50 and 1:11.84) while maintaining a one-length advantage with Tight Precision and Pretty Unusual in pursuit. Pretty Unusual, along the inside for Chantal Sutherland, made the first move, angling out leaving the turn and rallying between horses to gain a head's lead over Bootleg Annie mid-stretch. Tight Precision, however, was coming best of all while three wide under left-handed urging and drew away late to win at odds of 6-5.
"She’s a very classy filly," Rosario said. "Going to the top of the stretch, I saw (Pretty Unusual) coming inside of me, but I wasn’t worried. She’s got a real long stride and when I asked her she gave it to me.”
Owned by E.J. Sukley, Tight Precision earned $165,000 for her fifth win in 14 lifetime starts, nearly doubling her bankroll to $337,970. She began the year with a 1 1/2-length win in a one-mile optional claiming allowance event at Gulfstream Jan. 6. Tight Precision ran second to Acoma in the Valley View (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland last fall, her best previous stakes effort.
Charles Patton bred the winner. The dark bay or brown mare is out of Come Tight, by Artistry.
Tight Precision paid $4.40, $3 and $2.40 and keyed a $29 exacta. Bootleg Annie returned $5.80 and $4. Pretty Unusual, winner of the El Encino Stakes (gr. II) on the Pro-Ride main track two weeks ago for trainer Barry Abrams, was $4.60 to show.
Closeout was followed by You Lift Me Up, Saucey Evening, Catsalot and Century Park.