Winchell Thoroughbreds’ homebred War Echo passed stablemate Four Gifts inside the sixteenth-pole and went on to win the $150,000 Silverbulletday Stakes (gr. III) (VIDEO) by 1 1/2 lengths Feb. 7 at Fair Grounds.
The victory was theTapit filly’s first in graded stakes action and came during her 3-year-old debut. She was ridden by Shaun Bridgmohan.
Heiligbrodt Racing Stable's Four Gifts finished second to complete a Steve Asmussen exacta. Cindy Jones’ Just Jenda, winner of the Tiffany Lass Stakes at Fair Grounds last month, settled for third as the even-money favorite, more than nine lengths back of the winner.
The final time for 1 1/16 miles on the main track was 1:45.20.
“She ran great," Bridgmohan said. "She was so composed today. When I asked her at the top of the stretch, she gave me what she had.”
War Tigress set the early pace in the Silverbulletday as she posted a :23.61 quarter and :47.37 half-mile under Brian Hernandez Jr. Southern Yankee tracked in second, but it was Four Gifts that came from a three-wide position and struck the front as they rounded the far turn.
With Robby Albarado in the saddle, Four Gifts opened up a two-length lead at the top of the lane. But War Echo, who saved ground much of the contest, was eased out by Bridgmohan for the drive and passed her stablemate in deep stretch while slightly drifting out.
“She settled nicely today,” said Asmussen, who saddled the Silverbulletday winner for the third time in five years. “She’s Pyro’s (three-quarters) sister and is gorgeous physically. She can be pretty aggressive, but today, she settled.”
War Echo, who is out of the Wild Again mare Wild Vision, raced four times as a juvenile, winning once at Belmont. She finished fourth in Frizette Stakes (gr. I) in New York and a distant third in the Golden Rod Stakes (gr. II) in November at Churchill Downs. She has now earned $164,597 and is a half-sister to grade II winner Pyro.
Sent off as the third choice in a field of eight, War Echo paid $11.20, $5.40, and $3.40. The exacta (3-1) returned $39, with the trifecta (3-1-7) netting $80.40.
Flying Spur was fourth, followed by War Tigress, Southern Yankee, More of the Best, and Garter Belt.