Illinois state-bred trotting fillies took center stage Sunday night at Balmoral Park as the ICF stakes season continued to wind down, with a field of nine diagonally gaited freshmen taking to the track to slug it out in the $42,500 Violet Stake.
With the move back into the state-bred ranks after finishing fifth against open company in the Hanover last time out, James Bafia and Eugene White's Bailey's Wish continued to solidify her spot as the queen of this division as she rolled to an easy 2 1/4-length victory in 2:00.2 for driver Dave Magee.
Using the same tactics that netted them a victory in the Lady Lincoln Land on Oct. 2, Magee allowed the daughter of Southwind Breeze-Jen to settle in early before moving her to the top after longshot Macie Rae (Mike Rogers) led the field through an opening quarter in :29. Effortlessly sweeping into control on the backside, the Dirk Simpson-trained miss led the field through middle splits of :58.1 and :28.2 as her rivals struggled to stay within striking position of the good looking brown filly.
Through the lane, the issue was never in doubt as Bailey's Wish received only mild urging from her Hall of Fame pilot while easily keeping her rivals at bay for her fifth win of the season. Fox Valley Hosana (Mike Oosting), who tried to make a first-over bid to challenge the winner at the top of the stretch wound up in the bridesmaid role, while Wacko (John De Long) rallied late to finish third.
With the win Bailey's Wish now sports a record of 5-2-2 in 13 lifetime starts with earnings of $108,210. The 6-5 favorite of the betting public returned $4.60 to her legion of backers. (Balmoral Park)