Precocious Beauty lived up to her name on Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack as she won the $451,000 She's A Great Lady and equaled the stakes record of 1:50.2, which was set last year at Mohawk by I Luv The Nitelife in a She's A Great Lady elimination.
Doug McNair, who has driven Precious Beauty regularly, said he didn't expect to race the Art Major filly off the pace, but the trip worked perfectly.
"I didn't want to (race off the pace), but that's the way it worked out. There was a lot of early speed," said McNair in a post-race interview. "My mare was two seconds slower last week (winning her elim in a slower time than Beach Gal), but I still had a lot of faith in her."
The two fillies starting from the middle of the pack set the hot early pace as they fired off the wings. First Gallie Bythe Beach, driven by John Campbell, stepped clear after starting from post five. Then Sudoku, who started from post six, was alongside her. Sudoku, driven by Jim Morrill Jr., sailed to the opening quarter in :26.2, which put Yannick Gingras, who had advanced with Ali Blue, in the pocket. Not long past the quarter-mile mark Campbell pulled his filly and this time Morrill yielded.
Gallie Bythe Beach hit the halfway mark in :54 before the second tier developed, with McNair positioning his filly second-over. In the homestretch Gallie Bythe Beach was game, but a few strides before the finish line Precocious Beauty pulled even and then hit the wire first. Beach Gal, who had won her elimination the previous week in 1:50.3, finished third. Ali Blue held on for fourth and Lasting Appeal took the last check after starting from post 10.
Gregg McNair trains Precocious Beauty for breeder-owner Jim Avritt of Lebanon, Ky. Avritt, an attorney, made the trip to Mohawk to see his filly win. Avritt also bred Metro Pace winner Sportswriter, who is from the same maternal family as Precocious Beauty. Precocious Beauty has now won four of six starts and earned more than $300,000 for Avritt.