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TORONTO, ON – Diabolic was full of run late in taking the $125,000 My Dear Stakes Saturday at Woodbine.
The trio of Bid Once, Royal Engagement, and first-time starter Curlin Candy duked it out in the early stages of the 5 1/2-furlong Tapeta race for 2-year-old fillies, but it was Diabolic, making her stakes debut, who delivered the knockout punch for trainer Mark Casse.
Despite acting up before the start, the daughter of Dark Angel, with Antonio Gallardo in the irons, hit her stride as soon as the gates opened and then watched the front-end proceedings from along the rail.
It was Bid Once who held a narrow advantage through an opening 1/4-mile of :22.64, with Royal Engagement and Curlin Candy right alongside. Gallardo maintained a patient hand, sitting mid-pack through a 1/2-mile timed in :45.79, waiting for the right moment to make his move.
As the field turned from home, Diabolic was pivoted to the outside and instantly began to track down the leaders with each stride.
At the wire, the gray filly won by 2 1/4 lengths, with Curlin Candy in second and Royal Engagement third. Lois Len, the 9/5 choice, was fourth. The final time was 1:04.15.
Diabolic, owned by D.J. Stable and Nexus Racing Club, arrived at the My Dear off a gutsy neck nod in her career bow at Gulfstream on May 20, rallying to win a 5-furlong turf sprint.
“She was sitting down in the gate and I was a little nervous on how she’d be breaking,” said Gallardo, who celebrated his first Woodbine stakes win. “I don’t see myself being on the lead or too close. I watched the replay when she won with (jockey Emisael) Jaramillo in Gulfstream and I can see she is very smart. I wanted to be saving ground and following the speed. Really, she did everything perfect. When I pulled her in the clear, I asked and she gave me 100%. She’s a nice filly.”
Bred by Yeomanstown Stud in Ireland, Diabolic paid $9.20 for the win.
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