Video: Soaring Softly S. (BT)
Settled into a comfortable tracking trip by jockey Jose Lezcano, Morticia tracked early leader Team of Teams through a quarter-mile in :22.33 and a half-mile in :45.16. The daughter of Twirling Candy seized the lead in the stretch and held off stakes winner Lull to win by a nose.
"I think she's more of a sprinter than going long," Lezcano said. "Seven-eighths (of a mile) was good for her. She has a lot class."
Trained by co-breeder Rusty Arnold, Morticia completed the seven-furlong test in 1:19.93 on firm turf.
"It was a really tight finish but you can see how fast she is," said Arnold's assistant Claudio Cortez. "When she gallops, she always feels so good, so strong. When she gallops, she always looks really, really good. (She's) happy all the time. She did 1:19 and change and she did it really good. She's perfect for these short races."
Morticia entered off a runner-up finish to La Coronel in the Appalachian Stakes presented by Japan Racing Association (G3T) April 13 on the Keeneland turf. Before that effort, Morticia won the Melody of Colors Stakes Feb. 25 on the Gulfstream Park turf.
Second-choice Morticia returned $7.90, $4.40, and $3.40 across the board, while Lull paid $5.30 and $4.10 to place and show. Bellavais paid $4.60 to show. Favored Lady Alexandra tracked in third early, but had no punch late and finished sixth in the field of seven 3-year-old fillies.
Bred in Kentucky by Humphrey and Arnold, Morticia is the first starter out of winning Mr. Greeley mare Halloween Party. Second dam Costume Party is a half sister to English-Irish highweight Lucayan Prince, grade 2 winner Silver Comic, grade 3 winner Comic Strip, and stakes winner Akiba.