SOUTH OZONE PARK, NY – Godolphin homebred Lake Avenue overcame a tough draw and took the field from flags fall to that’s all while running away with Saturday’s $250,000 Demoiselle Stakes (G2) at Aqueduct.
Hopping as she broke from the far outside post 12 under Junior Alvarado at 4/1 odds, Lake Avenue soon recovered and rushed up to run four-wide heading into the clubhouse turn. She then quickly surpassed Critical Value up front prior to reaching the backstretch and assumed command.
Once straightened out, Lake Avenue put distance between her and the rest of the field while posting fractions of :24.70, :50.76, and 1:15.93. Still leading by over a length through the far turn, Lake Avenue came under pressure at the 1/4 pole from Critical Value.
Dispatching of that foe when coming under a drive, the Bill Mott trainee drew off to win by 4 lengths in a final time of 1:54.55 for the 1 1/8-mile event over the fast main track.
“She tried to break through the gate when they loaded, and then at the break, she hopped a little bit,” said Alvarado, who also won the Winter Memories Stakes earlier on the card. “It wasn’t the greatest start, but she has natural speed and Bill said to not take away anything that comes easily. After that, she recovered quickly and put herself in a good spot. I was just along for the ride after that.”
After running in mid-pack early, Maedean showed enough kick in the stretch to neck out Blame Debbie for second, while Critical Value faded to fourth, a 1/2-length behind them. Water White took fifth over Alandra, while behind them came Glass Ceiling, Daphne Moon, Jara, and Miss Marissa to complete the order of finish.
Fiftyshays Ofgreen and I Dare U were scratched.
The Demoiselle is part of the Road to the 2020 Kentucky Oaks prep race season. Lake Avenue earned 10 points for the win, with Maedean receiving 4 for second, Blame Debbie 2 for third, and Critical Value 1 for fourth.
Lake Avenue’s win was her second straight, having broken her maiden here on November 14 by 12 3/4 lengths while going 7 furlongs. The 2-year-old daughter of Tapit now sports a record of 3-2-1-0 with $191,000 earned.
“She has a lot of natural speed, and if Junior had held her anymore, I think he would’ve had to fight with her a little bit,” Mott said. “Nobody bolted to the lead, and I think we would’ve been fine if somebody opened up on us and we were laying second or third. It didn’t work out that way, and it looked like she relaxed nicely down the backside. She was hawking around through the stretch. She’s a little green, but it appeared she had a little more in the tank.”
Lake Avenue returned $10.80 to win, $5.70 to place, and $4.90 to show. Maedean brought back $4.40 to place and $3.60 to show, while Blame Debbie paid $6.20 to show.