Freshman filly trotters gathered for four divisions of the Kindergarten Classic Series at The Red Mile on Thursday night. The fourth preliminary of the series attracted 38 contestants for purses totaling $40,000.
Allerage Star, despite galloping at the start, recovered nearly 13 lengths to weave past rivals and get a nose in front of Saturday Mornings and Cocoacabana in 1:56.2.
Cocoacabana was the pacesetter with Sweet Thing and Fly Angel Fly sitting behind. She set fractions of :29.1 and :57.4. Challenged around the far turn by Sweet Thing, Cocoacabana remained in control as the backfield approached. Fanning three wide came Fly Angel Fly, with Lady Winona four wide and Saturday Mornings five wide.
After a 1:27.3 third quarter, Saturday Mornings rallied down the center of the course, while Allerage Star strolled onto the scene from in between horses. Cocoacabana battled Allerage Star and Saturday Mornings up to the finish, where Allerage Star got a nose in front, going a mile in 1:56.2.
Returning $3.20 to win, the daughter of Angus Hall-Starry Eyed-Muscles Yankee is owned by Little E LLC, Jason Settlemoir, A. Geiger and D. Stolz, trained by Jessica Okusko and Corey Callahan was aboard.
Lilu Hanover rebounded after failing as the favorite in last week's prelim with a 1:55.3 victory over 24-1 Annaliina.
Scott Zeron piloted Lilu Hanover to the front, while Aarena Hanover gunned for the pocket from post 10. Lilu Hanover set a opening quarter of :27.4. She remained uncontested through a :57.3 half. Rules Of The Road was flushed first-over entering the far turn, with Annaliina drafting 2 ¾ lengths off the lead. Rules Of The Road remained at Lilu Hanover's throat through a 1:27 third quarter.
Kicking to a two-length lead into the stretch, Lilu Hanover kept to her task as Annaliina gradually progressed towards the leader. Starting her bid a few yards too late, Lilu Hanover had a neck advantage at the wire over Annaliina, with Waiting Room and Lady Clarabella rounding out the top four, respectively.
Owned by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, the daughter of Andover Hall-Lady Luck Hanover-Donerail paid $5 to win.
Sarcy, upon brushing to the top after the first quarter, led the field to the finish in 1:55.3.
Bright Baby Blues swept across the track to claim command around the first turn, while Josie's Joy sat the pocket and Sarcy trotted third. After a :28.2 quarter, Jimmy Takter pulled Sarcy two wide to claim command before three-eighths. She was uncontested at the half, timed in :57.1.
Sarcy remained unchallenged around the far turn. Bright Baby Blues, stalking from the pocket, tipped first over at three-quarters, with Josie's Joy and Armatrading tracking her move. Timed in 1:26.1, Sarcy remained in control.
Despite bids from Bright Baby Blues, Josie's Joy, Armatrading and Fashion Lover in the late stages of the mile, Sarcy held command and sailed to a 1:55.3 victory; Fashion Lover finished second, Armatrading was third and Josie's Joy was fourth.
Sarcy, sent off the second choice, is owned by Christina Takter and John and Jim Fielding and trained by Jimmy Takter. The Donato Hanover-Southwind Allaire-Valley Victory daughter paid $7.20 to win.
Bee The Queen, entering off a 30-1 upset in the Kindergarten last week, was victorious at odds of 1-5 in 1:56.1.
Catherine's Melody showed early speed, while Bee The Queen floated towards the front, and Bright Eyes sat behind in third. The opening quarter was timed in :29.3.
Bee The Queen made her move before the half, trying to sweep around Catherine's Melody as Bright Eyes, Flirting Filly and Shafina Hanover began their bids. Bee The Queen had a head in front through a :58.3 half. Although Flirting Filly broke traveling first over, Shafina Hanover made her way to Bee The Queen's wheel through a 1:26.1 third quarter.
Callahan pulled the plugs on Bee The Queen and she kicked three lengths clear of Shafina Hanover, Bright Eyes and Catherine's Melody, and eventually winning by 3 ½ lengths in 1:56.1.
A daughter of Donato Hanover-Bee Line-Self Possessed, Bee The Queen is owned by Alfred Ross and is trained by George Ducharme. She returned $2.60 to win.
Bee The Queen extended her lead on the Kindergarten leaderboard with 158 points, with Allerage Star second with 125 points and Lady Clarabella in third with 111 points.
Twenty-four freshman colts competed in a trio of divisions of the Kindergarten Series.
First-time starter Whataworkout defeated 1-5 favorite Airman Batten in a 1:56.4 gate-to-wire effort.
Keystone Bodacious made a bid for the front, as well as Suit And Tie to the inside and Whataworkout taking the outer route towards the top. Keystone Bodacious broke as they began to turn, taking Suit And Tie out of contention, as well as impeding Airman Batten, causing him to run for a moment. Whataworkout trotted to the quarter in :30.1.
Strolling to a 1:00 half mile, Whataworkout soon had Airman Batten challenging for command. True Blue Stride sat in the pocket third and Whom Shall I Fear tracked the favorite's move from fourth. Stalled first over, Airman Batten remained 1 ½ lengths off leader Whataworkout through three-quarters in 1:28.4.
Whataworkout began to extend his stride into the final eighth. Airman Batten backed into the pocket, admitting defeat to 48-1 Whataworkout in 1:56.4. Whom Shall I Fear finished third and True Blue Stride, galloping into the stretch, recovered his stride to finish fourth.
A $99.60 winner, Whataworkout is owned by Lindy Farms, trained by Frank Antonacci and was driven by Domenico Cecere. Sired by Muscle Hill, out of the Chocolatier mare Southwind Sofia, the 1:56.4 effort is a lifetime and season best.
French Laundry, sent off the 1-2 favorite, won by lengths in 1:54.4.
Special Action left from the center, with Image Of Luck sliding into the pocket, and French Laundry opted for the overland route as they rolled into the turn. Special Action had a slight advantage over French Laundry through a :29.3 quarter.
Clearing the lead in the backstretch, French Laundry coasted his way to the half, with Special Action now second, Image Of Luck third and P Mac Attack trotting fourth, nearly 5 lengths off the lead. French Laundry traveled past the half in :57.2 and three-quarters in 1:26.1.
P Mac Attack took to the outside after French Laundry, while Special Action and Image Of Luck continued to chase. Under minimal urging, French Laundry drew clear of his foes and won by five lengths in 1:54.4 (:28.3) over Special Action, Lucky Ten K and P Mac Attack.
Owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, Marvin Katz, and Al Libfeld, and trained and driven by Jimmy Takter, the son of Muscles Yankee-Creamy Mimi-Conway Hall paid $3 to win.
Wicker Hanover, victorious in the third leg of the Kindergarten, returned to Lexington and claimed victory in the final division of the Kindergarten in 1:57.
Bighandsbiggloves got the lead, while Divisionist sat the pocket, Dapper Don trotted third and Boots N Chains stalked from fourth. The front quartet remained in that line-up through fractions of :29.1 and :59.2. Boots N Chains pulled first-over and engaged with Bighandsbiggloves for command. Wicker Hanover traveled second over while Divisionist sat the pocket.
After three-quarters in 1:29.3, Boots N Chains had a slight lead. Wicker Hanover fanned three wide, while Divisionist attempted to split horses. Wicker Hanover, in the final sixteenth, swept by Boots N Chains and won by a half-length in 1:57 over Boots N Chains, Divisionist and Bighandsbiggloves.
Owned by Christer Haggstrom Racing Stable, the son of Explosive Matter-Won An Done-Conway Hall is trained by Noel Daley and was driven by Kyle Bolon. He returned $6.40 to win.
French Laundry remains on top of the leader with 162 points. Wicker Hanover moved into second with 100 points and Airman Batten is third with 75 points. (The Red Mile)