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Red Carpet Ready won the 2023 Forward Gal Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park, a prep race for the 2023 Kentucky Oaks (G1). Now with a perfect 3-for-3 record, is the Rusty Arnold trainee a major threat moving forward? Tell us YOUR thoughts in the Comments section!
Ashbrook Farm and Upland Flats Racing’s Red Carpet Ready, unbeaten in her first two starts, stepped up to graded company and kept her perfect record intact with a dominating victory in Saturday’s $125,000 Forward Gal (G3) at Gulfstream Park.
The seven-furlong Forward Gal for fillies was the third of five graded-stakes for 3-year-olds worth $850,000 in purses anchored by the $250,000 Holy Bull (G3), the next step on Gulfstream’s road to the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) April 1.
Ridden by jockey Luis Saez for trainer Rusty Arnold, Red Carpet Ready ($6.60) broke running outside all but two rivals in the field of nine but quickly settled in fourth as Twice as Sweet, winner of the Smart Halo last fall at Laurel Park, and Arella Star dueled through a quarter-mile in 22.78 seconds.
Saez kept Red Carpet Ready in the clear and ranged up on front-running Twice as Sweet midway around the far turn as the half went in 45.98. Undervalued Asset made a run at Red Carpet Ready at the top of the stretch but the winner had plenty left in reserve and sprinted clear.
Undervalued Asset held second ahead of late-running multiple stakes winner Atomically. Positano Sunset, Apropos, Flakes, Twice as Sweet, Arella Star and Adeliese’s Smile completed the order of finish. Lynx was scratched.
Red Carpet Ready debuted last October with a gate-to-wire 10 length maiden special weight triumph sprinting six furlongs at Churchill Downs, where she followed up with a 3 ¼-length victory in the 6 ½-furlong Fern Creek to cap her juvenile season.
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Winning trainer George ‘Rusty’ Arnold II (Red Carpet Ready): “She’s answered the bell every time we’ve run her. She’s pretty special.”
“I’d be shocked if she doesn’t go long. I was more worried that she wasn’t a sprinter.”
“[Jockey] Luis [Saez] said she wanted to break so sharp, she her lost her footing a little bit, but after she recovered, she did everything right.”
Winning jockey Luis Saez (Red Carpet Ready): “I had a pretty good trip. She broke from there running and she’s pretty fast. We just tried to have a target in front and eveythin gcame out so perfect. She’s a pretty nice filly. She has everything. She can run from anywhere, in front or behind, and she keeps going.”
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