OZONE PARK, NY – Godolphin Racing’s Indulgent broke through for her first graded stakes win, upsetting a field of seven fillies and mares to take Saturday’s Grade 3, $200,000 Go for Wand Handicap at Aqueduct.
Breaking cleanly from the far outside under Luis Saez, Indulgent quickly took position sitting just off the early pace set by Lucy N Ethel through splits of :23.52 and :46.82. Nearing the 1/4-pole, Indulgent began to make her move and took command at the top of the stretch. Set down for the drive home, Indulgent kicked away to win by a length in a final time of 1:37.75 for the mile-long main track event.
“Last time she ran so hard, the only issue was the rail,” Saez said. “Last time, the rail was heavy and she broke from the inside and we couldn’t get out, and that hurt a little bit. Today, she got an outside post and she broke pretty well. We came to the straight, I asked her, and she took off.”
The 2016 defending champion Highway Star appeared to have a chance coming off of the far turn but couldn’t quite muster the kick to close on the leader. Verve’s Tale experienced a similar trip and result, finishing a 1/2-length back in third. Going for Broke, Lucy N Ethel, Flora Dora, and the favored Jamyson ‘n Ginger completed the order of finish.
The win was Indulgent’s first since taking an allowance race here on January 26. The Kiaran McLaughlin-trained 4-year-old daughter of Bernardini improved her record to 12-4-3-1 with career earnings of $342,117. A half-sister to Frosted, a decision has not yet been made as to whether or not Indulgent will continue to race in 2018.
“To put a graded victory under her name is very, very important,” said Jimmy Bell, president of Godolphin USA. “This should make her a very welcome addition to the breeding operation. I think we’ll just take this a step at a time. I don’t know if this is her last race, but this is her most important race.”
Indulgent returned $27.40 to win, $10.60 to place, and $5.70 to show. Highway Star brought back $3.90 to place and $3.10 to show, while Verve’s Tale paid $2.90 to show.