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Darlinonthebeach holds off Pure Country

October 02, 2016

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Darlinonthebeach led her season-long competitor and the 4-5 favorite Pure Country to win the first of two divisions of the $147,000 Bluegrass for 3-year-old pacing fillies as the 2-1 second choice in 1:50.2 on Sunday at The Red Mile.
Unchallenged through a quarter in :28 and a half in :56, Darlinonthebeach set the pace. Pure Country, sitting in the pocket, didn't pull to the outside until three-quarters, timed in 1:24.1. She struggled to pass Darlinonthebeach racing to the pylons while Lindwood Beachgirl chased the two in third and Penpal towards the center of the track in fourth. Pure Country settled for second as Darlinonthebeach finished in front. Penpal edged by Lindwood Beachgirl to take third.
Darlinonthebeach, by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Bettor's Delight mare Darlin's Delight, won her 11th race in 27 starts, compiling $776,823 in earnings for owner White Birch Farm. She is trained by Nancy Johansson and driven by David Miller. She paid $6 to win.
"These two fillies have been going at it all summer," Miller said. "It's been a good season for her."
"[Darlinonthebeach's connections] told me that she tied up that day," Miller said of Darlinonthebeach's scratch from the second heat of the Jugette. "They added Lasix today and she couldn't have been any better."
Clearing command into the first turn, Blue Moon Stride held the front to win the other Bluegrass split in 1:50.1 over Rock Me Baby and Kiss Me Onthebeach.
Leading through a quarter of :26.4, Blue Moon Stride tried to slow the pace, but Call Me Queen Be, sitting the pocket, pulled to the outside to try and take the lead. Blue Moon Stride accelerated and Call Me Queen Be ducked behind her through a :55.2 half.
Kiss Me Onthebeach edged first-over from third into the far turn with Rock Me Baby on her back. Call Me Queen Be was locked in the pocket through a 1:23 third quarter. Driver Andrew McCarthy kept Blue Moon Stride towards the pylons, leaving Call Me Queen Be with nowhere to pace. Rock Me Baby fanned off her cover and attempted to sweep to the lead, but Blue Moon Stride maintained the lead through the wire.
Owned by Emilio and Maria Rosati, Blue Moon Stride, by Rocknroll Hanover out of the Cam's Card Shark mare Classic Star, won her tenth race in 26 starts, earning $658,886. The Mark Harder trainee paid $7.40 to win.
"She's a very nice filly; we're very proud of her," Emilio Rosati said. "We came here especially to see her race. This is a lovely place to come and it's a dream to have a horse like this."
"We'll be back next week (for the Glen Garnsey Memorial)," Mark Harder said. (Ray Cotolo for Red Mile)
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