TwinSpires Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (gr. I) winner Wavell Avenue got to the winner's circle for the first time in 2016 with a significant class drop Aug. 3 in the $100,000 Shine Again Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.
With a familiar closing kick, the 5-year-old daughter of Harlington owned by Simon Dubb, Head of Plains Partners, and Bethlehem Stables surged in the stretch and wore down longshot Momameamarta to win by 1 3/4 lengths.
Under a hand ride from jockey Joel Rosario, the Chad Brown-trained mare finished the seven furlongs in 1:21.83 after West Coast Chick clicked off fractions of :22.20 and :44.88 through a half-mile. Momameamarta, who raced a half-length off West Coast Chick early, took over with a clear advantage in the stretch but was no match for the winner in the final furlong.
Rosario and Wavell Avenue trailed the eight-horse field, six lengths back, after the first quarter, but advanced along the rail on the turn and angled out at the top of the stretch to set up her passing drive.
Off at 1-2, Wavell Avenue paid $3, $2.40, and $2.10 across the board and now has a 7-2-3 record with $988,125 in earnings. Prior to the Shine Again, she ran third and fourth in the respective Madison Stakes (gr. I) and Humana Distaff (gr. I) in her first two starts of the year, then ran second to By the Moon in the Bed o' Roses Handicap (gr. III) June 25 at Belmont Park.