Stronach Stables' 5-year-old French-bred mare Amorama came from off the pace to win the $100,000 My Charmer Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Calder Race Course on Saturday, as part of the track's "Grand Slam I" day.
It was a well-timed ride by jockey Manoel Cruz, who guided her to a one-length victory over Bayou's Lassie. The pace-setting longshot, Rutledge Ballado, finished third. Amorama covered the 1 1/8 miles on firm turf in 1:46.51.Trained by Bobby Frankel, Amorama was winless in 2006 until the My Charmer, although she had hit the board in two other efforts this year. Frank Stronach purchased the daughter of Sri Pekan at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November sale late last year for more than $1 million as a racing and breeding prospect after she scored her most important career victory in the 2005 John C. Mabee Handicap (gr. IT) at Del Mar. She finished a close-up fourth defending that title this summer.The My Charmer win pushes her lifetime earnings to $794,353. Sent off at odds of 5-to-1, Amorama paid $13.20, $6.00, $4.40. Bayou's Lassie returned $5.20 and $4.40, while Rutledge Ballado, at 25-to-1, paid $10.40 to show.Frankel, speaking via telephone from California where he has a horse running at Hollywood Park on Sunday, said, "That was a nice race, he (Manoel Cruz) rode her real well. She might be retired now, I don't know yet. If I can run her once more before the breeding season starts, we might do that. But we'll have to see what's there for her."Jose Cuevas, assistant to Frankel at Calder, said, "She didn't handle that turf course in her last start (Cardinal Handicap at Churchill Downs Nov. 5), and she had some trouble in the race." Frankel currently has 19 horses stabled at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla.