TAMPA, FL – William Pacella, Frank Jones Jr., and Frank Shoop’s homebred C. S. Incharge sat a perfect stalking trip before taking charge down the front stretch to race away late with Saturday’s $150,000 Suncoast Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs.
Off well from the rail under Joel Rosario, C. S. Incharge rode just off the right hip of early leader So Refined through opening splits of :23.72, :47.29, and 1:12.05. While So Refined appeared ready to wire the field in an upset, Rosario began encouraging his filly forward through the far turn and made the move as the field hit the top of the stretch. With nothing but fresh dirt in front of her, the Dale Romans-trained C. S. Incharge kicked away and held off a late charge from the favored Daisy to win by 3/4 of a length in a final time of 1:41.40 for the 8.2-furlong main track event.
“Dale told me to just ride the race as it came up, and if someone else wanted to go to the lead, just sit behind,” Rosario said. “So I kind of let my horse be where she was and keep relaxed and keep her where she wouldn’t have her momentum stopped.”
Daisy took second by 1 1/4 lengths over Mihrab. So Refined faded late to finish fourth by 1 1/2 lengths over Blonde Bomber, with Belles Orb completing the order of finish. Prospective Lady and Battle Back Curly were scratched.
The Suncoast is part of the Road to the 2018 Kentucky Oaks prep race season. C. S. Incharge earned 10 points for the win, with Daisy receiving 4 for second, Mihrab 2 for third, and So Refined 1 for fourth.
C. S. Incharge’s victory was her second straight after breaking her maiden over the Gulfstream Park turf on January 3. The 3-year-old daughter of Take Charge Indy improved her record to 6-2-0-2 with earnings of $96,940. After the race, Romans was grateful to Tampa Bay Downs Racing Secretary Allison De Luca for urging him to enter C. S. Incharge.
“She really helped me out, because she knew I was coming for the Sam F. Davis, and she called me and said I should look at the filly race, too,” Romans said. “I listen to everything Allison tells me. She is one of the best in the game.”
C. S. Incharge returned $17.60 to win, $6.40 to place, and $4.40 to show. Daisy brought back $3.40 to place and $2.80 to show, while Mihrab paid $4 to show.