Green Hills Farms' Spotlight won her second consecutive race in as many starts in the U.S. when jockey Jerry Bailey rode the 3-year-old filly to a 3 1/2-length victory over Mambo Slew in the grade II $150,000 Lake Placid at 1 1/16 miles over a "good" Mellon Turf Course.
Now trained by Christophe Clement after being trained in England by John Dunlop, Spotlight came to Belmont Park in the spring to win an allowance on soft turf in July. She became a graded stakes winner Monday by stalking Fortunate Damsel through fractions of :24 3/5; :50; 1:14 1/5 and 1:38 1/5, before drawing off in mid-stretch to win in 1:50 2/5 before a crowd of 17,281."She's a good filly and she's been training well," said Clement. "The reason why they sent her here is because she is so anxious, but they always liked her in Europe. Maybe she will settle into the American routine and turn out to be a really nice filly. I'm very happy with her performance. I thought she was very impressive today."Clement said the Garden City Breeders' Cup, a grade I, $300,000, test for 3-year-olds fillies at nine furlongs on turf at Belmont Par on Sept. 12 is an option, as is the Queen Elizabeth II Invitational Challenge Cup, also a grade I, $500,000 turf test at nine furlongs at Keeneland on Oct. 16.
Bailey had flown cross-country back to Saratoga after winning Sunday's grade I Pacific Classic aboard Pleasantly Perfect at Del Mar, near San Diego, Calif."I was going to rate her as long as my muscles held up, which was about the far turn," Bailey said. "I knew I had the horse on the lead. The only one I had to worry about was Mambo Slew, and she didn't make that much of a run. I kept my filly busy enough so that she wouldn't fall asleep - unlike me, who could fall asleep right now."Spotlight returned $5.10 to win. It was three-quarters of a length back to Fortunate Damsel in third, with Delta Sensation, Vous, Minge Cove and Indy Charmer trailing. Bending Strings and Shadow Cast, both entered for the main track only, were scratched, as were Lucifer's Stone and Ohbegeewhyen.A daughter of Dr. Fong, Spotlight has won four of nine career starts.