On a day in which short-priced winners in graded stakes produced a Pick 6 that paid a scant $48, champion Dreaming of Anna closed out the action at Churchill Downs June 14 with a win in the Early Times Mint Julep Handicap (gr. III) (VIDEO).
Dreaming of Anna followed wins by Hystericalady in the Fleur de Lis (gr. III), Pure Clan in the Regret (gr. III), Pyro in the Northern Dancer (gr. III), Tizdejavu in the Jefferson Cup (gr. IIT), and reigning Horse of the Year Curlin in the Stephen Foster (gr. I).
Fans complain that stars are rushed off to the breeding shed, but Curlin has remained in training at 4, and Dreaming of Anna is still at the top of her game at the same age. She was the champion juvenile filly two years ago when her unbeaten campaign culminated with a win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) at Churchill Downs.
Now, however, owner Frank Calabrese and trainer Wayne Catalano have Dreaming of Anna competing on the turf, where she is excelling. In fact, a testament to her ability is the fact the Juvenile Fillies is her only stakes win on dirt while she has eight added-money scores on grass.
One more race should push the daughter of Rahy past the $2 million mark, her latest victory upping her earnings to $1,988,175.
In the Early Times, Garrett Gomez guided Dreaming of Anna to a front-running victory, sitting chilly on the hedge and easing out to a 2 ½ length score while unchallenged. At 1-2 odds, she returned $3, $2.20, and $2.10. Coming from near the back of the pack, Ballymore Lady closed ground under Julien Leparoux to get second and pay $5.20 and $4, while Kiss With a Twist ran third and paid $5.20.
Dreaming of Anna covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.77.
Bred in Kentucky by Calabrese, Dreaming of Anna is out of the Broad Brush mare Justenuffheart.