The Todd Pletcher-trained Ocean Drive exploded in the stretch to score a three-quarter-length win in the May 15 Gallorette Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Pimlico Race Course. Film Maker was a fast-closing second.
With Jerry Bailey aboard, Ocean Drive opened up a three-length lead with a sixteenth of a mile to go and held on under brisk handlng.
With Patience finished 3 3/4 lengths back for third. Ocean Drive completed the 1 1/16-mile distance in 1:40.85.
"There as no speed in this race on paper so we wanted to stay close up and we were able to," Bailey said. "My horse ran a good race and this is a really, really fast race today."
The 11-10 choice in a field of eight, Ocean Drive returned $4.20, $2.40, $2.20. Film Maker paid $2.80 and $2.60, with With Patience paying $3.40. The exacta paid $10.40 and the trifecta returned $59.
Pletcher conditions the 4-year-old daughter of Belong to Me
for Sy and Bonnie Baskin. Ocean Drive, who was bred in Kentucky by James Conway and Thomas Muller, was purchased for $160,000 at the 2001 Keeneland September yearling sale.
Breaking from the extreme outside, Lavender Baby quickly made her way to the rail to lead the field through early fractions of :24.38, :48.31 and 1:11.70 before Ocean Drive, who was stalking the early pace for Bailey, began to make a move with an explosive turn of foot while two wide as the field rounded the turn for home. Into the stretch, Bailey and Ocean Drive left Lavender Baby in her wake. From the pack, Film Maker and Edgar Prado, who showed no speed early, came flying to make it a sprint to the wire close to home.
"I had to wait a couple more jumps to get out of there," Prado noted. "When I got out of there she was fine. She's feeling good. I think she's back to herself."
With Patience eased out in the drive and moved up to take the third spot while offering no threat to the first two.
Ocean Drive, second in the April 18 Jenny Wiley (gr. IIIT) on the Keeneland sod in her last start, ended a seven-race losing streak that included four in-the-money showings. Her last victory came in the Gaviola at Belmont Park July 2. The victory was Ocean Drive's sixth win in 14 starts and increased her career earnings to $399,136.
Caught in the Rain finished fourth, followed by Lady Linda, Lavender Baby and Bluffie Slew.