Witch Dali and driver Jody Jamieson capitalized off a third quarter tilt at the front to win the $30,000 Mares Preferred on Friday evening (July 6) at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
A field of seven pacing mares squared off in the Friday feature with Richard Moreau trainees Witch Dali and Sandbetweenurtoes playing an important role. Sandbetweenurtoes fired out to the lead at the beginning and posted opening fractions of :27.2 and :55.2. Firebby, the 7-5 favorite, started first-up from fourth nearing the half and engaged in a big third quarter battle with the leader.
A third quarter of :26.3 took a bite out of Sandbetweenurtoes and Firebby, as the mares slugged it out from the half into the lane. Witch Dali was able to benefit from the battle, as she had been situated fifth in the early stages and driver Jamieson followed Firebby’s move around the far turn, sitting third on the outside, but a few lengths back of the top pair’s battle.
Witch Dali powered by the leaders in deep stretch, but was not the only mare passing rivals on the outside. American Sara and Sylvain Filion had tracked Witch Dali from the far turn and got up in the last stride to make it a photo finish. The photo finish camera determined that Witch Dali held on by a head to win at odds of 5-2. Firebby finished third, while Sandbetweenurtoes was fourth.
A 7-year-old daughter of Dali, Witch Dali surpassed $100,000 in seasonal earnings with her fifth victory of 2018. The Moreau trainee now has five wins and nine on the board finishes in 12 starts this season. Owned by Brad Grant, Witch Dali is now a 28-time winner with career earnings of $582,668. She paid $7.70 to win. (WEG)