Jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, aboard Dixie Moon, glances at the fast-approaching Queen's Fate just before the wire in the Ontario Lassie

Jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, aboard Dixie Moon, glances at the fast-approaching Queen's Fate just before the wire in the Ontario Lassie

Michael Burns

Dixie Moon Finds Redemption in Ontario Lassie

Curlin filly was sixth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf.

Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry's homebred Dixie Moon fought to the wire and held on by a nostril to win the $125,000 Ontario Lassie Stakes at Woodbine Dec. 3 over Queen's Fate.

Sent off as the 1-2 favorite in the 1 1/16-mile race for 2-year-old Ontario-breds over the all-weather track, Dixie Moon sat just behind Fairy Hill, who took the field through fractions of :25.84 and :51.04 for the first half-mile.

Dixie Moon seized the lead after the half-mile pole with Eurico Rosa da Silva aboard. The Catherine Day Phillips-trained Dixie Moon ran six furlongs in 1:14.61, while pressed by Loopety Loo into the stretch. After turning back that challenge, Dixie Moon had a length advantage, but a fast-closing Queen's Fate threatened late. Grinding down to the wire, Dixie Moon was declared the winner by a nose after a photo finish, with a final time of 1:45.43.

"She's had a long campaign and I think that maybe showed on her a little bit today, but she's had a long campaign and she showed up every time," said Phillips, who reported that Dixie Moon will join her stable at Palm Meadows in Florida for the winter after a four-week break.

The daughter of two-time Horse of the Year Curlin , Dixie Moon broke her maiden in her first start Aug. 19 at the Toronto track. After placing second in the Natalma Stakes (G1T), she took the Oct. 8 Cup and Saucer Stakes over the Woodbine turf. Shipped to Del Mar, the filly finished sixth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1T) Nov. 3 one start prior to the Ontario Lassie. She has earned $260,850 for her connections.

"She's a tremendous filly," Phillips said. "She came back from the Breeders' Cup in really good order and I'm just glad she got the chance to show everybody how nice she actually is."

The winner returned $3.00 and $2.20 with no show wagering, while Queen's Fate paid $3.60 for second. Loopety Loo finished third, three lengths behind.

Dixie Moon is out of the Rahy mare Dixie Chicken and is a half sister to stakes winner Guy Caballero, by Quality Road.