Spook Express was sent off at odds of just over 9-1 and returned $20.40, $9.40, and $8.80. Please Sign In (16-1) paid $19.80 and $10.80 and completed the $287.80 exacta. Lady Dora was worth $5.60 to show. (Chart, Equibase)
South African champion Spook Express closed from 11th-place in the 12-horse field to win Sunday's $100,000 Honey Fox Handicap (gr. IIIT), catching pacesetter Please Sign In near the wire of the one-mile turf race. Under jockey Mike Smith, the Thomas Skiffington-trained mare completed the Gulfstream Park feature in 1:35.60 on a firm course.Lady Dora closed well to finish third, a head behind Please Sign In. It was a nose back to fourth-place Miss Tobacco, and another neck to Zeiting. Capital Request, Libertaire, Windsong, Tippity Witch, Lady Brook, Silver Rail, and Laurica completed the order of finish.Spook Express was South Africa's champion 3-year-old filly of 1998. As a 3-year-old, Spook Express won eight of nine races in South Africa, finishing second in her lone defeat. In five prior American starts, she won a Saratoga allowance race and the listed Columbiana Handicap. The Honey Fox (formerly Joe Namath) win marks her first in a graded stakes in North America. She earned $60,000 for Kinloch Enterprises with the win, her 11th in 15 career starts. Spook Express (Comic Blush--Park Walk, by Green Dancer) was bred in South Africa by Jack Syndicate.