FRANKLIN, KY – Silverton Hill’s homebred Ruby Notion tracked the early lead and before fighting hard in the stretch and beating several strong foes to win Saturday’s Grade 3, $450,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies Sprint Stakes.
Breaking from post 5 under Florent Geroux, Ruby Notion sat just off the pace in third while Bixby Lou and Brielle’s Appeal dueled through opening fractions of :23.10 and :45.96. Coming under a drive in the stretch, Ruby Notion split between Brielle’s Appeal and the even-money favorite Lull and made a charge for the lead. Taking command within the final 1/16 of a mile, Ruby Notion crossed with a neck advantage in a final time of 1:15.80 for the 6 1/2-furlong event over a surface rated good.
“She won very easy last time, and the filly she beat, Chanteline, won back very easily at Saratoga closing weekend,” Geroux said. “We thought maybe we got lucky last time with the soft turf from the rain. But today she showed she’s just as good on firm turf. So hopefully she’ll can keep improving. Honestly, when Lull came to me, I thought, ‘I don’t know if I’m going to hold her off.’ Because my filly was giving me everything she had. Her head was very low to the ground and she was giving everything she had. Very lucky that I was able to hold Lull off the last 50 yards. It felt like we were going fast and felt like we were finishing fast.”
Lull nosed out Brielle’s Appeal for second, with Con Te Partiro another 1/2-length back in fourth. Fading in the stretch, Bixby Lou headed Originator for fifth, while Spellker and Mines and Magic completed the order of finish. Noted and Quoted and Therighttobeararms were scratched.
Ruby Notion’s win was her second straight following a score in the $200,000 Caress Stakes over a soft Saratoga turf course. The Darrin Miller-trained 5-year-old daughter of Great Notion improved her record to 14-6-0-3 with earnings of $426,928.
“I don’t know if she’s good enough to get done what she’s doing right now. I know she’s just in super-good form right now,” Miller said. “She feels very good and has had no issues. She seems like a really happy mare right now. She’s very game, we know that much.”
Ruby Notion returned $8.20 to win, $3.60 to place, and $2.80 to show. Lull brought back $2.60 to place and $2.20 to show, while Brielle’s Appeal paid $3.80 to show.