Wavell Avenue wins the Filly and Mare Sprint.
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Wavell Avenue wins the Filly and Mare Sprint.
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Wavell Avenue Kicks in Filly & Mare Sprint

Ontario-bred daughter of Harlington gets first grade I win.

With a strong late kick, Wavell Avenue rolled past front runner La Verdad to take the $1 million TwinSpires Filly & Mare Sprint (gr. I) at seven furlongs in 1:22.39.

Video: TwinSpires Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1)

It was the first graded win for the 4-year-old daughter of Harlington—Lucas Street, by Silver Deputy, who is owned by partners Michael Dubb, David Simon, Head of Plains, and Bethlehem Stable. She was ridden by Joel Rosario and is trained by Chad Brown. Wavell Avenue was bred in Ontario by Eugene Melnyk.

An objection was made against La Verdad and rider Jose Ortiz by jockey Gary Stevens, who was aboard third-place Taris. The stewards did not change the order of finish.
"We thought there would be a strong pace up front," said trainer Chad Brown, who got his first Breeders' Cup win on the dirt in six dirt starts. "(Rosario) has gotten along with this filly so well. He's really been instrumental in her development."
Wavell Avenue was a $70,000 purchase by agent Steve Young out of the 2014 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky horses of racing age sale, which is held in conjunction with the July yearling sale. She was part of a Eugene Melnyk dispersal, which was handled by Taylor Made Sales Agency.
"Her last three races have been dynamite," said Simon, who has owned racehorses since 1978. "She just has improved almost day-to-day. Really, you could tell from Chad and from the workout that she was really getting better. It's been quite a dream."
As expected, La Verdad was out in front early and inherited the lead. The 5-year-old daughter of City Zip came into the Filly & Mare Sprint off a 3 3/4-length win at Belmont Park in the Iroquois Stakes. She took the field of 13 other challengers through fractions of :22.53, :45.12, and 1:09.54. La Verdad was pressed by both Taris and Stonetastic. Coming out of the turn, Wavell Avenue swung wide and kicked passed the front runners at the top of the stretch. She won by 1 3/4 lengths.
"We expected to be wrestling with La Verdad every inch to the wire," Dubb said. "La Verdad is a special horse, but it was our day today." 
The winner paid $22, $10.20, and $6.60. La Verdad brought $8 and $5.40, while Taris delivered $4.80. The $2 exacta paid $179.20 and a $2 trifecta returned $1,497.40.