Arindel Farm's heavily favored Wait a While forged to the lead coming off the turn and left her field behind in the stretch to win the $400,000 Yellow Ribbon (gr. IT) on the Santa Anita turf Saturday, winning her fourth consecutive race impressively.
Wait a While should be a leading contender in the Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) Nov. 4 at Churchill Downs, after another sterling performance Saturday. The Todd Pletcher-trained 3-year-old filly passed a big test in Saturday's race, her first against older fillies and mares. The daughter of Maria's Mon
also went over the $1 million mark in career earnings.
The victory, recorded in an excellent time of 1:59 2/5 for the 1 1/4 miles on firm turf, was Wait a While's second grade I victory during the winning streak. The other came across town in the American Oaks (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park.
Receiving a three-pound break from her seven rivals, Wait a While was away well from the far outside post for jockey Garrett Gomez. She settled into third on the far outside as Dancing Edie, between horses, took the lead from Live Life on the inside. Dancing Edie, with Corey Nakatani aboard, gained a short advantage after a quarter-mile in :24 as Wait a While moved into stalking position just off Dancing Edie's flanks. They clipped off splits of :48 1/5 and 1:12 4/5 before Wait a While assumed command coming off the final turn. She faced no danger in the stretch as Gomez kept her to the task, winning by 4 1/2 lengths.
"All I can say is that everything she's done has been impressive," Gomez said. "She went by Corey sooner than I wanted to, but she just drug me by her. I would have preferred to have had a target at that point, but it didn't work out that way. I'm really glad Todd decided to put her on the grass."
Pletcher assistant Gina DePasquale, who saddled Wait a While Saturday, said the filly would return to Churchill Monday and will remain there until the Breeders' Cup.
"It just went perfect for her," said DePasquale, who said she has been with Pletcher for almost nine years. "She got a clean position, and she's really a special filly. She loves to win, and that's the name of the game."
Dancing Edie was shortening stride in the final furlong but dug in gamely to hold second by a neck over the late closer Three Degrees, ridden by Alex Solis.
"That filly's something else," said Dancing Edie's trainer, Craig Dollase, of the winner. "But (Dancing Edie) ran her race. She might have gotten a little tired at the end, but that will set her up good for the next dance (the Breeders' Cup). Hopefully, she'll come out it well, and we'll go from there."
Wait a While, who won for the seventh time in 12 lifetime starts, began her winning streak in the off the turf Sands Point at Belmont Park June 3 when she won by 4 1/2 lengths on a sloppy track. She shipped to Hollywood to win the 1 1/4-mile American Oaks by 4 1/2 lengths. After a six-week break, she returned to New York to win Saratoga's Lake Placid (gr. IIT) by 4 3/4 lengths. Saturday's win, worth $240,000, pushed her earnings to $1,218,087.
The 7-10 choice, Wait a While paid $3.40, $2.80, and $2.40. Dancing Edie, who upset the John C. Mabee Handicap (gr. IT) in her last start, returned $7.40 and $3.80. Three Degrees, second choice in the field of seven, was $2.60 to show.
Alan and Karen Cohen own Arindel Farm. W.S. Farish and W. Temple Webber Jr. bred Wait a While, who is out of Flirtatious, by A.P. Indy
. She was a $260,000 Ocala sales buy in February 2005.
Sohgol took fourth, followed by Bond Deal, Singalong, Moscow Burning, and Live Life. Amorama scratched.