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In Italian won the 2023 Jenny Wiley Stakes (G1) at Keeneland for her 2nd romping victory over the course. Is the Chad Brown trainee America’s best turf horse, regardless of gender? Tell us YOUR thoughts in the Comments section!
Peter Brant’s In Italian (GB) made a stylish return to the races by leading all the way to win the 35th running of the $600,000 Jenny Wiley (G1) for fillies and mares Saturday afternoon by 3 lengths over With The Moonlight (IRE).
Prior to the Jenny Wiley, Godolphin’s homebred First Mission won the 41st running of the $400,000 Stonestreet Lexington (G3) for 3-year-olds, and Stonestreet Stables’ Twilight Gleaming (IRE) took the 26th running of the $250,000 Giant’s Causeway (L) for fillies and mares.
In Italian was making her first start since a runner-up finish in the Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) here last fall, and she took the field of six wire to wire in notching her third Grade 1 victory.
Trained by Chad Brown and ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., In Italian covered the 1 1/16 miles over a firm turf course in 1:39.71. The victory is the sixth in the race for Brown and his fifth in the past six renewals.
Brown’s first victory came in 2015 with Ball Dancing, and he followed that with triumphs by Sistercharlie (IRE) in 2018, Rushing Fall in 2019 and 2020 and Regal Glory last year. Brant owned Sistercharlie and Regal Glory.
In Italian set fractions of :23.63, :47.29 and 1:10.66 while being tracked by Queen Goddess with White Frost and With The Moonlight racing a joint third. On the far turn, Queen Goddess began to retreat as With The Moonlight took up the chase but never threatened the winner.
In Italian is a 5-year-old daughter of Dubawi out of the Redoute’s Choice mare Florentina. The victory was worth $306,125 and increased In Italian’s earnings to $1,635,308 with a record of 10-6-3-1.
In Italian returned $3.50, $2.38 and $2.10. With The Moonlight, ridden by William Buick, returned $3.10 and $2.62 and finished 1¼ lengths in front of White Frost, who paid $3.42 to show under Frankie Dettori.
It was another 3 lengths back to Skims (GB), who was followed in order by Pizza Bianca and Queen Goddess.
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“She’s a wonderful mare. She’s been good from the very beginning, and we’re very proud to have her. She’s going to be a great broodmare for us. We’re so excited; to win this race this number of times (three) has been a great thrill for us. This is one of the most important filly-and-mare races, and it’s just a great honor to win this race.”
On why he has continued such a longtime investment in the sport
“It’s not losing, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, you’re going to lose more than you’re going to win, so you have to get used to it. It will humble you. But it’s well worth it when you experience the thrill of winning. It’s a great, great sport. No opinions in the sport – it’s just first one to the finish line in a fair way. I love the sport. I’ve loved it ever since I was 13 years old. I plan on continuing to do it.”
“She’s been a nice filly all the time. She broke quick out of the gate and then she relaxed. Her ears were up. She does that all the time. I was confident. The trainer (Chad Brown) told me just to go to the lead. She broke so good, I tried to relax her going into the first turn, and she switched off. That was key. After that, on the backside if somebody gets close to her, I can let her do her thing, because I know I have plenty in the tank. She was nice. She deserves all the credit. She got the job done.”
“Great trip. The winner was just too good, but she ran a really good race. The winner set nice fractions. We weren’t going slow. The winner isn’t a horse you want to give too much rope, and you can see the track’s running pretty fast.”
“Great trip – we were behind the winner. I found a shot turning for home, but the winner was too good. Simple as that; she tried hard for me, no complaints.”
“Good trip good trip, not good enough.”
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