Check out all the latest podcasts including Blinkers Off and The Magic Mike Show
Check out all the big upcoming stakes races
LEXINGTON, KY – Shadwell Stable’s Malathaat rallied hard in the stretch to catch Pass the Champagne in the late stages before winning Saturday’s $400,000 Central Bank Ashland Stakes (G1) at Keeneland.
Malathaat broke from post 5 under Joel Rosario as the 3/2 co-favorite and settled off the pace heading into the clubhouse turn.
Simply Ravishing, the other top betting choice, set measured fractions of :24.26, :48.56, and 1:13.00 but wilted almost immediately after Pass the Champagne tipped out to challenge her in the far turn.
Pass the Champagne looked gone halfway home, but Malathaat’s long stride helped the Todd Pletcher trainee steadily gobble ground until she caught the leader in the shadow of the wire.
Malathaat crossed a head clear while stopping the clock at 1:42.94 for the fast 1 1/16-mile dirt route.
“She has a beautiful stride,” Rosario said. “This morning, talking with (Pletcher), he told me exactly how to ride her. It looked like (the leader) was getting away from me, but I knew my filly would be there for me.”
Pass the Champagne was 5 1/4 lengths clear of the late-running Will’s Secret in third, with the same gap back to Moon Swag in fourth.
“The race sort of had interesting tactics when you are dealing with a short stretch,” said Will’s Secret jockey Jon Court. “I probably had to move on her a little bit early to try and catch the top two. I think she’s going to love the longer stretch in the (Kentucky) Oaks (at Churchill Downs).”
Curlin’s Catch and Simply Ravishing completed the order of finish.
“She stopped in her last race and she stopped again (in this race),” Simply Ravishing’s trainer Kenny McPeek said. “We’re going to check her out.”
The Ashland is part of the Road to the 2021 Kentucky Oaks prep race season. Malathaat earned 100 points for the win, with Pass the Champagne receiving 40 for second, Will’s Secret 20 for third, and Moon Swag 10 for fourth.
Malathaat’s win came in her first start since winning early December’s Demoiselle Stakes (G2) at Aqueduct. The Curlin filly – purchased for $1.05 million as a yearling – has now earned $412,150 through 4 career starts.
“I think (Malathaat) might be pretty special,” said Rick Nichols, Vice President and General Manager of Shadwell Stable, whose original owner Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum passed away recently. “I can’t put it into words. I am sure (Sheikh Hamdan) is up there with a big smile on his face looking down on us. We really needed this.”
Malathaat returned $5 to win, $3 to place, and $2.40 to show. Pass the Champagne brought back $4.40 to place and $3.40 to show. Will’s Secret paid $3.20 to show.
There’s a reason we’re the #1 trusted source for premium racing picks & info.
The Racing Dudes preview four 2023 Kentucky Derby (G1) prep… Read More
The Magic Mike Show guys preview & give their tickets… Read More
Aaron and Papa Dude give their thoughts on the Sweet… Read More
The Racing Dudes take a closer look and dish out… Read More
For years, the Racing Dudes have had you covered with… Read More
Aaron previews the 2023 Louisiana Derby (G2) from Fair Grounds,… Read More
Vinny from Real Dynasty Picks previews the 2023 Jeff Ruby… Read More
Looking to cash in big?
Sign up for exclusive 10% discount on orders, plus be the first to access our daily free and premium horse racing picks, articles, podcasts, and more!