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DEL MAR, CA – Willow Grace Farm and Michael Lund Petersen’s Grace Adler circled many of her rivals in the far turn and romped home a dominating winner of Sunday’s $300,000 TVG Del Mar Debutante Stakes (G1).
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Grace Adler broke from post 7 under meet-leading rider Flavien Prat as the 9/2 fourth choice in the field of eight juvenile fillies and sat off toward the rear.
The 6/5 favorite Eda raced inside Elm Drive and Dance to the Music through early fractions of :21.78 and :44.37 before the hot early fractions eventually led to their collective undoing.
Given the green light heading into the far turn, Grace Adler swept past the five rivals ahead of her while cornering and exploded when straightened for home, eventually winning the 7-furlong fast dirt sprint by 11 1/4 lengths in 1:23.76.
“No special instructions for me,” Prat said. “(The trainer) just told me that she wasn’t as fast as the other fillies, but that she’d come running. He was certainly right. It might have looked like I moved too early with her, but it was more a case of them coming back to me. We were going forward and they were coming back.”
Dance to the Music held onto second by 2 3/4 lengths over Bicameral, a maiden who finished second to Dance to the Music in their debuts last time out. Myfavoritedaughter was a 1/2-length behind Bicameral.
Eda, Rock the Belles, and the eased pair of Elm Drive and At the Spa completed the order of finish.
Grace Adler’s win followed her debut score in a local 5-furlong sprint on July 31. The Curlin filly, purchased for $700,000 last fall, has now earned $222,000.
“Grace Adler is a really good filly, and when she started to make her move, you could tell by (announcer) Trevor Denman’s voice that she was really making up the ground,” said trainer Bob Baffert. “It was set up for her.”
Grace Adler returned $11.20 to win, $4.80 to place, and $4.20 to show. Dance to the Music brought back $5 to place and $4.20 to show. Bicameral paid $10 to show.
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