Champion 2yo Female Dirt – Tapitmore
2018 Record 7-4-2-0
Scratchbred – Tapiture x Mt. Livermore x Sunday Silence
Tapitmore signaled she was special and a little sassy by beating males in a residency contest called the ASR Sons of Tapit in her first start. That race came in early April but Tapitmore did not repeat the excitement of her debut over the summer as she ran in sprints, winning once in three starts. Things began to turnaround in August when she showed more interest by running a strong second going seven and one half furlongs. The obvious next more was to send her a route and see how far she wanted to run. Tapitmore had shown a desire to drop well back early in a race before making one big run, a style that often suggests a horse wants to go further.
Trainer Rickybobby felt supremely confident in his filly and rolled the dice by running her in the Grade One Darley Stakes at a mile and one sixteenth. Most trainers might have given her an allowance or listed run first but Rickybobby’s confidence was rewarded as Tapitmore made a bold move coming from tenth to pass all but one horse in the field to finish second by two lengths. Given that confidence of going straight to a grade one suddenly Tapitmore had enough points to make the Breeders’ Bowl Juvenile Filly field and was also a strong contender to win.
Race day brought rain to the Kentucky track and the dirt was only rated good. Like many fillies in the field Tapitmore was trying an offtrack for the first time but she took to it like a duck, staying a little closer to the front runners before launching her bid. Grade One winner Nadera led the field through solid fractions but as the field hit the stretch the off track took its toll and she became leg weary. Holy Moly Bulb who had sat in fourth just a length and a quarter off the early pace made a move towards the front but Bode Girl was moving too and she forged to the lead. Tapitmore had been quickly picking off horses but for a while it looked like Bode Girl was home free. Tapitmore kicked into another gear and ran down that filly to win by a quarter length. The two were so close that they both earned 96 speeds.
Tapitmore had one more race to conquer, the Grade One Movieland Starlet, her third race at a mile and one sixteenth. She lined up against three other grade one winners but the bettors favored some more lightly raced fillies in the field. Possibly discounting her Breeders’ Bowl win because of the off track Tapitmore was a mid-priced horse but she ran like a dominant champion. She closed from sixth to win by a facile length and secured her championship.
Champion 2yo Female Turf – Invincible Irish
2018 Record 8-6-1-0
I Am Invincible x Exceed and Excel x Ghostzapper produced by mare Bondye
This is Bondye’s second foal and only stakes horse so far. Although Bondye was not a stakes horse she was a solid race who was in the money in 17 of 26 starts including 8 wins. She is a sister to three graded winners, two stakes winners and four allowance winners from nine foals for her dam Tropical Spirits. Tropical Spirits was the first foal from grade one winner Birds of Paradise and she has been the most prolific of that mare’s daughters.
Birds of Paradise was a total sprinter and her great grand daughter Invincible Irish parlayed her amazing speed into a championship. Her only off the board finish came in the Breeders’ Bowl Filly Juvy Turf which was her only route start. Interestingly her only other non-winning start came on the dirt in her debut. But on turf, in sprints she was unbeatable.
After breaking her maiden in March she went straight to stakes winning two listeds before trying a grade two in June. The filly had won her previous starts going wire to wire and in that race, the Cherry Hilton she went straight to the front and dared the field to come and get her. They couldn’t. Trainer Derbyking had a decision to make. There are few big races for two year old fillies sprinting and with Invincible Irish so good at sprints it didn’t make sense to try to stretch her out yet. Interestingly the richest race for any two year olds on the turf is not the Breeders’ Bowl races, nor indeed any route race. It is the Golden Shoe, based on Australia’s biggest two year old race and run at only six furlongs.
Derbyking decided to go for it. It meant taking on the males and proving she was the best two year old of any sex at turf sprints. As a prep she was entered in the Grade One Firebird, a six furlong race against the males. When the gates opened there was a bit of a nervous moment – Invincible Irish was not in front. She was sitting a neck behind Choose Your Dream, a talented male who entered off a grade two victory and also liked having the early lead. The two battled neck and neck until Invincible Irish began to slowly pull away. They ran the rest of the field off their feet as Choose Your Dream was beaten only a length and a quarter and it was over four lengths to the third place finisher.
After that win it was on to the Golden Shoe. Invincible Irish was favored and Choose Your Dream was a close second choice with Excel Home third choice. Excel Choice was entered off a win in the Grade One More Nay. That race was also at six furlongs and he won it wire to wire. The early speed looked like it could be suicidal. This time Invincible Irish broke in front. Surprisingly recent stakes winner Paint By Cadet was second by a head early on. Excel Home was another head back in third and Choose Your Dream a neck back in fourth. The early pace quickly melted away and by the second call it was all Invincible Irish versus Choose Your Dream, the other two just couldn’t keep up with these tremendous speedsters. Choose Your Dream was breathing down the neck of Invincible Irish just one quarter length behind, trying to keep the pressure on the filly. As the stretch run approached he began closing the gap. The filly was tested for everything she had and in the end she had enough. She kept a head in front of her oh so talented rival and in doing so sewed up a championship.
Champion 3yo Female Sprinter Dirt – Slick Power
Mastercraftsman x Unbridled’s Song x Seattle Slew produced by mare Extended Power
Extended Power was 2010 Champion Sprinter on Dirt back when the sprint awards were not separated by sex. Had there been a champion 3yo female sprinter back then she would have swept it with three grade one wins including against older mares in the Breeders’ Bowl. As a broodmare she has produced six foals with two grade two winners (including Slick Power) and a stakes winner.
Slick Power ran away with this decision early in the year. She ended 2017 on a two race win streak. Her last race of the year was her first ever try in a listed which she won going away. Trainer coolk knew a hot horse when he had one and Slick Power went into 2018 on January 18th when she took the seven furlong Grade Two Yanta Snez stakes in California. The field was a salty one with three young ladies who had already won graded stakes as two year olds. They were three of the top four choices on the board but Slick Power was well respected as the second choice. Class held as the three fillies directly behind her were also the three prior graded winners.
Given six weeks off Slick Power reappeared in Florida in the seven furlong Grade Two Girl Up Front. Slick Power was the heavy favorite off her win in California and it was no surprise to see her stalk the field near the back of the pack before blowing them all away and earning her first triple digit speed. The trend continued in Kentucky in April as she approached the Grade Two seven furlong Stonerstop Stakes. Waiting for her there was the first grade one winner she would face, Fade Back to Black had won the previous season’s Grade One Dell Computer Debutante at the distance and was well regarded as a sprinter. Favored by just a few cents was Melee Attack who had just run a 102 speed figure. Slick Power was the second choice seeking her fifth straight win and she did not disappoint, beginning the race in tenth before running away with a win with a 104 speed.
Slick Power added win number six in an allowance in May before heading to New York where she would run in three straight grade ones. She finished second in the prestigious Priceless at six furlongs and the Exam at seven furlongs before floundering against older mares in the Nutckracker at seven furlongs, her third race in less than two months. Still she bounced back with an allowance win before heading into the Breeders’ Bowl F and M Sprint where she ran a creditable fifth.
Champion 3yo Female Distance Dirt – Beef and Beer
2018 Record – 10 – 2 -4 -1
Curlin x Unbridled’s Song x Seattle Slew – Produced by the mare Bosongaboutseattle
Bosongabountseattle was a grade two winner herself but from her first five foals her best was only stakes placed. Beef and Beer changed that becoming her first stakes winner and she was followed by her younger sister Mo Beef and Beer by Uncle Mo who is already a listed winner.
Beef and Beer won two races during 2018 but she danced every dance and put forth some enormous efforts. Her wins came in the nine furlong three year old filly dirt Equinics race where she had to face off against 2017 Champion 2yo Got Street Smarts. Beef and Beer had won four of five starts as a two year old including a listed stakes but her only loss came in the Grade One Getaway Stakes which was won by that rival. As so often happens the good two year olds become great three year olds and the early bloomers tend to fade. Beef and Beer won the Equinics while Got Street Smarts faded.
Beef and Beer became an obvious choice for the Bluegrass Oaks. Gumming up the race (quite literally was a sloppy race track that always throws a screwball into the big races. Luckily Beef and Beer had won her second start, an allowance on an off track. Beef and Beer went off as the third choice in the twenty horse field and her jockey smartly placed her forwardly early, she was in sixth just three lengths off a lively pace. Beef and Beer began to move up but she was not the only one moving. Tudor Wit closed strongly from fifteenth early on to take the lead while Beef and Beer had to settle for second only three parts of a length behind.
Trainer Mtk thought his filly bounced out of the race well enough to try males in the Middle Jewel but it was a failed experiment. Given a little more time between starts Beef and Beer headed to the Grade One Sister Hen where she would again face Tudor Wit as well as Bluegrass Oaks third Gracebook. Over a fast track it was a runaway victory for Beef and Beer who looked like she would be a dominant force in the second half of the year. In the fall she took on older mares twice in major races, finishing second in the Grade One Three Smokestacks Stakes where she ran gamely behind Council of Lords. Then it was on to the Breeders’ Bowl Distaff. Again in Kentucky Beef and Beer had to contend with an off track although this one only a good surface. With a fourteen horse field made entirely of grade one winners the three year old filly was not given much of a chance by the oddsmaker but she ran her eyeballs out to finish second, beaten only half a length by the Champion Older Female, Jess Killin Time. Beef and Beer came back for one more race in 2018, a residency championship against older mares where she was inexplicably sent straight to the lead but she could not hold on and finished second.
Champion 3yo Female Long Dirt – Tete Fanapth
2018 Record – 8-4-1-0
Lope de Vega x Rock of Gibraltar x Galileo Produced by the mare Tete Gabriella
Tete Gabriella is a young grade two winning mare. She had plenty of stamina but tended to run best around ten furlongs and she had a decided preference for dirt in spite of her pedigree. She has been bred three times, all to Lope de Vega and Tete Fanapath is her second of those foals. Older sister Tete Denebola is a graded placed long distance runner who has never tried the dirt (trainer Sabbath take note!) while their youngest sister is win less in three starts.
Tete Fanapath took a strange path to winning this championship. She began her career with six starts on the grass and only one win. Sabbath kept increasing the distance of her races as longer distances became possible but he obviously felt his filly was better than she was showing. In May the EURO residency offered a special listed for three year old fillies going ten furlongs on the dirt. In a bit of serendipity Tete Fanapath found herself going longer on the dirt and she ran a solid second in what was her stakes debut. She returned to win the next race in the series, also on dirt, this time going eleven furlongs. She nearly wired the field that day and ran an eye popping 106 speed, strong for her age and for the distance.
Suddenly Sabbath had a target perfect for both him and his filly – the Grade Two Oaks de Swedish at a mile and one half. This time she was midpack early but still she blew the field away by three lengths. Six weeks later came the ultimate test – a fourteen furlong grade one against older mares called the Great Dame. One of the highlights of the year for long distance dirt mares there were some serious contenders in the field. Tete Fanapath was a fine filly but the three year old with only three starts on the dirt went off as the second longest shot on the board. Yet still it is a good thing horses don’t read the odds board. Tete Fanapath rated in fifth early on before launching a bid towards the front. Favored Feelin’thefeelin’ got first jump on the leaders. She started steadily closing the gap between herself and the leaders with Tete Fanapath just on her heels. Entering the stretch the older mare was surging to the front but Tete Fanapath was moving even faster. Moving faster yet was Sis du Jue who had been in tenth early on and was over ten lengths back at the stretch call. Tete Fanapath forged to the front giving it her all while Sis du Jue was closing with every monstrous stride. In the end Tete Fanapath stretched her body out towards the wire and ended up a head in front. Feelin’thefeelin’ was just three quarters of a length back in third.
Champion 3yo Female Sprinter Turf – Crimson and Dead
2018 Record – 6-3-0-0
Shamardal x Fastnet Rock x Dynaformer Produced by the mare Carraig Aonair
This is Carraig Aonair’s first foal and she didn’t fall far from the tree but was perhaps a bit more precocious. Carraig Aonair was a tremendous turf sprinter who was grade one placed by the end of her three year old year and a multiple grade one winner at four. She even ran creditably against males. Her three year old foal by Snitzel is already graded placed.
Crimson and Dead went on a tear as a two year old winning three of her four starts, ending with a romp in a listed stakes. The 4amigos crew knew they had something special and with Equinics on the horizon early in 2018 they had something to point for. They gave Crimson and Dead about six weeks off and entered her in the Grade Two Railroad Handicap at six furlongs against males. The bettors respected the filly immensely, making her the second choice even though she had never even entered a graded event before. They were repaid well as she stalked the early pace before pulling away to win by a length and a half.
Blazing Saddles had an easy choice to make when deciding which filly would represent the residency in the six furlong turf Equinics race for three year old fillies. Crimson and Dead was again the second choice in the field. As the gates opened there was a real scrum for the early lead. Crimson and Dead saw herself shuffled back into tenth but was only about three lengths off the front runners who were really trucking along on the lead setting very fast fractions. Crimson and Dead began picking up her pace as the early leaders burned themselves out and as the field came down the stretch she burst away taking the lead and winning by nearly two lengths.
The Equinics was easily the highlight of Crimson and Dead’s campaign. She tried a route in the 1000 Guineas and two sprints, one against males and just came up short in the end. Perhaps the long campaign from two into her three year old season caught up to her. She returned to sprinting against fillies in December and easily took a listed looking like her best self again. Watch out for her in 2019.
Champion 3yo Female Distance Turf – Loverock
2018 Record – 9-4-3-0
Fastnet Rock x Lonhro x Kris S. Based on the hemare Magic Black
Magic Black was a grade three winner who excelled right at the one mile distance. The last eleven races in his career all came at a mile on turf and several of those saw him win or place in stakes races, including at the graded level.
Loverock seems to like a mile too. She won or placed in five grade one stakes at that distance over the year and actually in her nine starts in 2018 she never ran a step shorter or a step farther. She broke through with a second place finish behind Secret Kitten in the one mile turf Equinics race for three year old fillies. Secret Kitten was the favorite in that spot off a big grade three win just a month earlier and she carried that form well. The two would face off later in the year in the 1000 Guineas and the tables would be turned as Loverock, coming in off a smashing win in the Grade One Japanese 1000 Guineas carried her hot form over into a win in the major classic.
Loverock came back just three weeks later in Ireland for their Guineas race (G1) where she encountered her first off track, a yielding surface. The filly who usually contested the early pace was shuffled back a bit at the start and never got into her usual stride but still managed to outclass most of the field, finishing second. She returned a month later and finished fourth in a grade one, causing her trainer Deyoto to back off a bit on her campaign. She was given two months off to come back and win a listed and then another two months before taking on older mares in the Grade One Prix Marcel Boss where she finished a strong second behind fellow 2018 champion Mutant Powers. Loverock came back one more time in 2018, finishing well back in a special allowance against males.
Champion 3yo Female Long Turf – Final Realm
2018 Record – 10-7-1-0
Uncle Mo x Frankel x Sea the Stars Produced by the mare Devil’s Dragon
Final Realm is the first foal for her dam who won this award back in 2016. The family descends from grade one winner Silent Screem, a Kingmambo mare who only ran once on turf.
Final Realm ran the table in her first six starts of 2018. The come from behind filly just got better as the distances got longer. She started the year entered in her first stakes, an easy win. Then she went straight to a grade two with the same results. Her next three races were major grade one Oaks races – the Sydney Oaks, the Oaks de English and the Irish Oaks all at a mile and one half. She faced fellow three year olds one last time in the Grade Three Minerve Stakes at thirteen furlongs and added another win.
After that there was nowhere to go but against older horses. She ran sixth in the Grade One Vermillion after falling over twenty lengths behind the early leaders in her debut against older females. Trainer Lenny decided to shoot for the stars with his superstar filly and entered her against the best males in the sim in the Ark de Comic Dog and she was no match for reigning Horse of the Year Spiced Turtle. Final Realm was entered in the Breeders’ Bowl F and M Turf and faced a good turf course for the first time in her career. The three year old filly was facing a field full of older grade one winners, including the 2017 champion turf mare Koko’s Kitten who was looking to repeat her victory in the Breeders’ Bowl. The oddsmakers did not care for the three year old filly’s chances, especially after two poor performances but her true fans were rewarded to see her charging down the lane flashing all the promise she had shown in the spring. Her run came up second behind Otto Orlando, who was also crowned a 2018 champion but fans were satisfied to see their favorite look poised for a great 2019. Final Realm returned for one last race in December, a three year old filly listed which she won with consummate ease.
Champion Older Female Sprinter Dirt – White Wisp
2018 Record – 7-3-1-1
Scratchbred Tapit x A.P. Indy x Kingmambo
White Wisp did not make her career debut until June of her three year old season. As a four year old she had never even run in a stakes race but trainer Tees believed in his regally bred filly. In her second start of the year she won the Grade Two Long Island Sprint at six furlongs. Two months later she added the six and one half furlong Grade Two Vagabond Handicap.
Even though the come from behind filly was still lightly raced, Tees believed she needed a freshening before targeting the biggest races on the calendar for female sprinters. He gave her three months off before entering her in the prestigious seven furlong Grade One Nutckracker in New York. She was running against the hot Sea the Stars mare Belladonte, who won the Grade One Humane Distaff in Kentucky over Bluegrass Derby weekend and Equinics winner Deep Pact. White Wisp was a mid-priced horse on the odds board but at the finish there was no doubt the filly who lingered in last place early blew away the field to win by a length and a quarter over Belladonte in a scorching 1:20.90 time.
White Wisp forego any preps and trained up to the November Breeders’ Bowl F and M Sprint. As is typical for the Breeders’ Bowl fields every runner was either a grade one or grade two winner. White Wisp was fourth choice, with Belladonte favored over Indy Street Pro and Malibu Malice. As is her wont White Wisp walked out of the gate early on. Deep Pact broke alertly and opened up a four and a half length early lead. It looked like she might make a runaway of the race but the field began slowly reeling her in. White Wisp kicked into high gear from behind but there were some quality fillies in front of her who were also making strong runs. White Wisp’s late run was foiled by Indy Street Pro and Bugle Meerup who finished heads apart and a length and a quarter in front of the eventual champion.
Champion Older Female Distance Dirt – Jess Killin Time
2018 Record – 7-3-1-0
Scratchbred Awesome Again x Unbridled x Damascus
Jess Killin Time entered her four year old season off a solid three year old year. She was a listed stakes winner and had hit the board in several others. She started the year with her first foray into graded competition, the Grade Two The Canada at a mile and one eighth. The race was limited to newly turned four year olds. Jess Killin Time blasted out of the starting gate and while she did have a clear lead she never really opened up a huge lead. As the closers started coming she dug in and dug in and held on to win by three parts of a length. If the victory were not visually impressive the time of 1:46.34 and the speed of 119 certainly were.
Six weeks later she turned up in Arkansas for the Grade One Orange Blossom. Traditionally one of the biggest races for older mares early in the year, every horse in the Orange Blossom field was a graded stakes winner. Even off that impressive win in The Canada, Jess Killin Time was not favored. She didn’t break in front either and actually settled into third, over two lengths off the dueling leaders. Nevertheless she began tugging her jockey towards the front and rounding the far turn she took the lead and started opening up. She held her lead throughout the stretch and won by a length and three quarters with a 117 speed.
She bounced back to reality in her next start, the Grade One Mike Steadhamp Stakes at a mile and one sixteenth. She ran a solid second behind recent MD Distaff (G2) winner Luna Ape but her speed dropped down to a 108. Trainer Canyongate wheeled her right back in another grade one just three weeks later and she finished well back. He backed off her schedule but she didn’t respond until just the right time. He entered her in the Breeders’ Bowl Distaff which would be her first trip over an off track. For the first time since The Canada she broke on top and she never looked back. Over a loaded field she carried her speed to a half length victory over the 2018 three year old champion Beef and Beer who ran Jess Killin Time to one half length margin.
Champion Older Female Long Dirt – Connect the Spots
2018 Record – 7-4-1-0
Scratchbred Empire Maker x Nureyev x Ela-Mana-Mou
Connect the Spots dominated her division in 2018 as a seven year old. When other well bred mares have often seen a season or two in the breeding shed Connect the Spots was whipping the younger girls easily. It is easy to see why Connect the Spots was given the chance to race in 2018 – she ended 2017 on a three race win streak, highlighted by the Grade One Empire State Stayer in December. With 2018 an Equinics year there was a chance for trainer Tgerk to represent the Midas residency with a strong chance to win.
He prepped his stamina laden filly in a grade two at two miles where she romped by over four lengths. The biggest question about the Equinics is that the female distance race is only a mile and a half and Connect the Spots had been running fourteen to sixteen furlongs. The bettors thought the drop in distance wouldn’t hurt Connect the Spots, even against a strong field. The mare dropped back to last, lollygagging along twenty lengths behind the leader. As the field hit the backstretch she began to pick up her pace but entering the stretch she was twelve lengths behind Go Out Strong who had snatched the lead from grade one winner Hashtag Pye.. Also moving towards the front, and with a six length jump on Connect the Spots was the long distance champion 3yo filly of 2017 Midweek, who had beaten males in the twelve furlong New Yorker. Midweek closed stoutly but Connect the Spots had another gear entirely and ran past the whole pack to win by two and a quarter lengths.
Connect the Spots added a grade three win before finishing off the board in another grade one. After a two month break she returned in the Grade One Scottsdale Stayer at two miles and ran a valiant second with a 112 speed. That was enough to convince Tgerk to try males in the Breeders’ Bowl Dirt Marathon against the males but it was not to be for the star filly. Connect the Spots bounced back though and ended 2018 the same way she ended 2017, with a win in the Empire State Stayer (G1).
Champion Older Female Sprinter Turf – Candy Smuggler
2018 Record – 8-3-2-1
Muhaarar x Danzig x Mr. Prospector Produced by the mare Kilos Baby Kilos
Kilos Baby Kilos was undefeated in her only start, a maiden going a mile on dirt. The twenty two year old mare came from that time in the original game when the CPU would do crazy things like that. She has produced ten foals, all of which have at least won at the allowance level. Several have done even better, with two listed stakes winners, two grade two winners and grade one winner Candy Smuggler.
Candy Smuggler was fourth in her first two starts of the year, the Equinics and a grade three race. In both the mid pack runner was only beaten a length and a half. She had been given two months off after her last start in 2017 and perhaps she needed to be raced back into shape. She began to show real promise in June when she finished second in an ESR residency stakes race where she faced males. She was pretty far back early on but made a nice run to finish second behind Sherpa Ray’s Tap who just recently won the Pekays Remembrance Stakes.(G1). Candy Smuggler ran a 112 speed and showed she was ready for more. A lot more.
Candy Smuggler made her next two starts in six furlong sprints versus the males. The first race was a grade three and the next a grade two. Each time her closing run got her up just in time, winning by a head and one quarter length. There is only one grade one race carded by the CPU every year for older female turf sprinters, the Fujimoto Turf Sprint at six furlongs in Japan in October. As such it attracts the best of the best from around the sim. Candy Smuggler went off as the second choice but was all alone at the wire, winning by a comfortable length. She raced twice more in 2018, trying males again in a grade three and running a solid second and then returning to female company in another grade three and finishing third.
Champion Older Female Distance Turf – Mutant Powers
2018 Record – 8-5-0-0
English Channel x Tapit x Deputy Minister Produced by the mare Exceptionalism
Exceptionalism did her best running between seven and one half furlongs and a mile. She won three listeds, one at seven furlongs and two at seven and one half but she ran creditably and was graded placed going a mile. Her pedigree suggested Exceptionalism should excel on the dirt but she much preferred turf. Mutant Powers was her first foal, her second is a grade two winner and her three year old foal is already a listed winner.
Interestingly Mutant Powers was available for $150,000 claiming tags twice as a three year old. She broke her maiden at that level and returned in a non-winners of two lifetime claimer to win again. Luckily for trainer Sicko there were no takers. Mutant Powers found some confidence and got better with age, winning her first grade one as a four year old. She added four more grade ones in 2018 just proving that patience can really pay off in the game.
Her only non-stakes win of the year came in January as she prepped for the Equinics. She finished sixth in the Equinics and was given nearly three months off before returning in May in South Africa. She won her first grade one of the year there in the Weedy Establishment. Like all of her 2018 starts it was a mile on the grass and as in all of them she started well back early but made a strong late run. She finished fifth in her next race but then went on a three race grade one win streak. She beat females on a yielding track in the Start Up and then faced off against eventual three year old champion Loverock in the Prix Marcel Boss and defeated her younger rival valiantly.
Her next race came in the Breeders’ Bowl Mile against the best males in the sim. Perhaps Sicko was given confidence by the high chances of an off track after Mutant Powers had run so well in the Start Up. Perhaps he just felt his star filly deserved a shot to show the sim what she had. Either way it was a great move that paid dividends. Mutant Powers broke last but bit by bit she ran by nine other grade one winners (and four other graded winners) to easily win by a length. She seemed to come out of the Breeders’ Bowl in fine fettle so she was entered back three weeks later in the Motherly Love Stakes but the turnaround was too tough and she only managed a fourth place finish.
Champion Female Long Turf – Otto Orlando
2018 Record 7-2-1-2
Scratchbred Scat Daddy x Danzig x Secretariat
Otto Orlando had a very respectable 2018 but when she was on the biggest stage she was more than respectable, she was marvelous. She began the year with two third place finishes in listed stakes races going fourteen furlongs. After finishing unplaced in a grade three in February she was given time off. A lot of time off. She didn’t surface again until September when she ran a 112 speed while finishing second in a listed at eleven furlongs.
Her next two races defined her year. She moved up to a mile and one half in the Grade One British Champion Gals, a race worth $1,500,000. She jumped out to an uncontested early lead, eventually opening up six lengths on the field while setting very fast fractions. Her mile split was 1:34.84 and she went a mile and one quarter in 1:58.75. Otto Orlando became leg weary in her final quarter mile but was able to hold on for the win by two and a half lengths.
All of the sudden the daughter of Scat Daddy was on another planet. She ran a 115 speed in the British Champion Gals and she was excelling at the shorter distances than the fourteen furlong races she started the year in. She entered the Breeders’ Bowl F and M Turf on a great form cycle. It was her third race off a layoff and as the track came up good it helped that she had previously run well on an off track. Otto Orlando again sprang from the gate in front and easily opened up on the field. Her fractions were slower in the Breeders’ Bowl than they were in the British Champion Gals, but that is to be expected on a slower surface. Even so she opened up an even bigger lead against a tougher field and said ‘come and get me’. They tried. They failed. She sailed to a nearly three length victory over the brilliant three year old filly Final Realm who claimed a championship in 2018 as well. Otto Orlando tried males in her final start of the year in the Japan Classic (G1) but she was unable to get to the front and may have been tired after three strong efforts as she finished well back.