TORONTO, ON – Terra Racing Stable’s homebred Amalfi Coast burned home strongly in the stretch to capture her graded debut in Sunday’s $175,000 Bessarabian Stakes (G2) at Woodbine.
Breaking well from post 2 under Eurico Da Silva at 6/1 odds, Amalfi Coast remained running along the inside as the field passed the chute onto the main track. Up front, Gamble’s Candy set opening fractions of :23.18 and :45.99 while the 2/1 favorite Special Relativity kept closest watch after breaking alertly from the far outside post 12.
Near the 1/4 pole, Da Silva tipped Amalfi Coast off the rail and set her down three-wide at the top of the stretch. Gamble’s Candy rounded the far turn still a handful of lengths in front, but Amalfi Coast began quickly gobbling up ground in the stretch.
Striking the front just outside the 1/16 pole, the Kevin Attard trainee strolled away late for the victory. Amalfi Coast crossed 2 1/2 lengths clear in a final time of 1:22.03 for the 7-furlong sprint over the fast synthetic main track.
“The trip was great,” Da Silva said. “In the paddock, Kevin had so much confidence. I think she sensed that confidence because, I’ll tell you what, she ran with a lot of confidence. And when we turned home, this filly took off. Galloping out, another horse was passing her, and she just wanted to take off again. She ran a brilliant race today.”
After breaking a step slow from the rail, Painting took back and continued saving ground for much of the running, then tipped out and rallied hard late to steal second at the wire. She finished a head in front of Special Relativity, with Zestina and a tiring Gamble’s Candy each a neck behind her in third and fourth, respectively.
Heavenly Hill finished sixth, a 1/2-length ahead of Above All Names, who encountered traffic trouble in the far turn after trying to close from second-last. Misericordia, Red Cabernet, Lady Mamba, Souper Striking, and Xenobia completed the order of finish.
Amalfi Coast’s win followed similar stakes triumphs in the Ontario Damsel and the Carotene to improve her record to 8-4-2-1, all in 2019. The Ontario-bred 3-year-old daughter of Tapizar has now earned $277,616 to date.
“We always had high hopes for her,” Attard said. “She trained well as a 2-year-old; she was really close to running and just needed a little time off, so we started her up early in 2019. When she started working, she showed the talent that she was showing last year as a juvenile. Her first race was stellar. It looked like it was just a matter of time before she was going to break her maiden. It took a few more starts and the addition of blinkers seemed to really pick her up.”
Amalfi Coast returned $14 to win, $7.10 to place, and $4.60 to show. Painting brought back $10.60 to place and $6.50 to show, while Special Relativity paid $3.20 to show.