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HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Champion Equine LLC’s My Sassenach swept to the lead at the top of the stretch and drew clear for a dominating 8 1/4-length victory in the $100,000 Desert Vixen while taking her veteran South Florida trainer back to the FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes winner’s circle following a long absence.
The Desert Vixen, a 6-furlong sprint for fillies, co-headlined Saturday’s 13-race program at Gulfstream Park with the $100,000 Dr. Fager, a 6-furlong open-division dash, kicking off the 2021 FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes, a tradition-rich series for juveniles sired by accredited stallions standing in Florida.
My Sassenach ($21), who finished second in her July 1 debut, graduated in the Desert Vixen, giving trainer David Braddy his fifth career success in the Florida Sire Stakes series for juveniles sired by accredited stallions standing in Florida.
“It’s good for me. I’ve won these races 4 or 5 times, but not recently,” said Braddy, who enjoyed FSS success with Stacy’s Toy in the 1989 Desert Vixen and Susan’s Girl, Mystic Obsession in the 1991 Desert Vixen, and Sly Rajab in the 1998 Affirmed. “It’s good to be back with a nice filly.”
My Sassenach broke cleanly under Miguel Vasquez to gain a prime outside stalking position behind pacesetter Rufa Red Knot, who set fractions of :22.12 for the first 1/4 and :45.74 for the first 1/2-mile. My Sassenach made a three-wide sweep to pull alongside the pacesetter leaving the turn into the homestretch and continued on to score comfortably and impressively.
“I thought she was a real good filly the first time we ran her. We worked her 9 days in front of the race, scoped her, and she was clean. We ran her in that race and she scoped with a lung infection,” Braddy said. “I think that cost us the first race, but we’ve been high on her all along.”
Demurely closed from off the pace to finish second, 3/4 of a length behind a tiring Rufa Red Knot. Noble Dreamer, the 7/5 favorite in a field of eight fillies, finished an even fourth.
My Sassenach, who was purchased for $152,000 at the OBS April sale for 2-year-olds in training, ran 6 furlongs in 1:12.17.
“We liked the way she breezed at the sale and we liked the way she galloped out,” said Champion Equine LLC’s Michael Sucher. “We have a lot of high hopes for her.”
Florida Sire Stakes action will continue August 28 with the $200,000 Susan’s Girl for fillies and the $200,000 Affirmed, both slated for 7 furlongs, and September 25 with the $400,000 My Dear Girl for fillies and the $400,000 In Reality, both to be run around two turns at 1 1/16 miles.
“I think the 7/8 might be all right. I’m not so sure about the long (race),” Braddy said. “We’ll just have to see.”
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