The third time was a charm for Prince Sultan Bin Mishal Al Saud's Merneith, who broke her maiden April 19 in a six-furlong maiden special weight for fillies and mares on a sloppy (sealed) track at Oaklawn Park.
The daughter of American Pharoah trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert was a $600,000 purchase by Narvick International at the Ocala Breeders' Sales March Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training last year when she was consigned by de Meric Sales. Prior to that sale, she sold as a weanling for $350,000.
Merneith finished second in her first two starts, both at her Santa Anita Park base. She lost by a length in her Jan. 20 debut while racing 6 1/2 furlongs and then missed by a nose in a one-mile Feb. 23 maiden test.
In her only timed work at Oaklawn Park, the 3-year-old filly showed an affinity for the track, posting a four-furlong bullet in :46 4/5 to be the fastest of 122 at the distance April 11.
Sunday's race reaffirmed that fact when she pulled away in the stretch to score by 10 1/4 lengths on Oaklawn's main track, finishing in 1:09.96.
Ridden by Martin Garcia, Merneith raced in third and then second as Ms. Dragonette set fractions of :23.01 and :45.96 through four furlongs. After the field turned for home, however, Merneith was already seven lengths ahead. It's Mine was able to get up for second and Good Shabbos was third.
Bred by China Horse Club, Merneith is the second winner out of the stakes-winning Flatter mare Flattermewithroses.