Western Ransom Reaches Wire Just in Time

Western Ransom and Ryan Fogelsonger got up just in time to win the $150,000 Martha Washington Breeders' Cup (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-old fillies Saturday on the turf at Pimlico Race Course.

From far back at the top of the lane, the 2-1 favorite Western Ransom caught second choice Plenty and jockey Abel Castellano, in the final strides by a head. Plenty led from the start and had a four-length lead with a sixteenth of a mile to go but tired. The frontrunner finished second by a neck over With Affection, who came on between the top two to take third.

"I told Ryan just to get her head in front and I think he did," Jon Ferriday, assistant to trainer Michael Dickinson, said. "I think I was having kittens when he came across the line. It was very pleasing."

Fogelsonger and Western Ransom are now perfect ion two trips, having teamed up to win the Hilltop Stakes at Pimlico in May 8.

"I really didn't want to go that wide but things worked out and she was good enough to get there," said Fogelsonger. "She's as game as they get. I had her too far back and took her too far wide. She did the rest. "

Western Ransom paid $6.20, $3.40 and $2.60. Plenty returned $3.20 and $3 and the exacta came back $17.80. With Affection's show was $6.80.

Western Ransom, a daughter of Red Ransom covered the 1 1/16-mile distance in 1:43.26 over a firm course.

She improved her record to 4-3-1 in nine lifetime starts while earning her first graded stakes victory. She was coming off a 10th-place finish in the American Oaks (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park July 3. The $90,000 winner's share gives her a career bankroll of $229,290 for owner/breeder John A. Chandler.

Plenty, who broke a step slowly set a solid pace of :23 3/5, :47 2/5, 1:11 2/5 and 1:36 4/5, spurting away when urged on the far turn.

"The race set up just like we expected," said Castellano. "When we got to the quarter-pole I asked her to run and she responded. We just got beat at the last jump. It just didn't go our way."

Academic Queen, Bay Tree, Humoristic, Art Fan, Saree, Diavla, Perilous Night, Richetta and pour It On trailed.

(Chart, Equibase)