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ELMONT, NY – Lawrence Goichman homebred Runaway Rumour pulled an upset to stay undefeated while in the process defeating open company for the first time with a 1/2-length win in Saturday’s $100,000 Wild Applause for 3-year-old fillies.
Runaway Rumour overtook five competitors from the outside in the stretch to capture the 1-mile contest on Belmont Park’s Widener turf.
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Runaway Rumour, bred in New York, saw jockey Luis Cardenas pick up the mount from Jose Lezcano, and the duo broke from the outermost post and tracked in seventh position as Bye Bye led the eight-horse field through the opening 1/4-mile in 22.79 seconds, the 1/2 in 47.28, and 3/4 in 1:11.69 on the firm turf.
Out of the final turn, Runaway Rumour was in sixth position but with plenty of daylight in front of her. The Flintshire filly utilized a strong turn of foot to pick off rivals and sustain that momentum to the wire, completing the course in 1:34.25 with 6/5 favorite Minaun in second.
The Jorge Abreu trainee was unraced as a juvenile but broke her maiden going 6 furlongs on May 9 on the Belmont turf. She won again when stretched out to the Wild Applause distance in her previous start on June 5 and improved to 3 for 3 after capturing her stakes debut, increasing her career earnings to $140,250.
“I was a little concerned about the jockey change because I had never rode Luis in that type of race before, but he gave me so much confidence when I was giving him instructions,” Abreu said. “He told me he was looking at the replays and I knew it going to be OK. I told him, ‘Whatever you do, do not go on the inside.’
“He broke sharp and tucked her in behind horses and he kept her in the clear,” Abreu added. “She likes to run free on the outside. When I saw at the 5/16 pole that she was picking up momentum, I had a pretty good feeling about her.”
Off at 13/1, Runaway Rumour returned $29 on a $2 win wager. Abreu said she will now target the 1-mile $150,000 Lake George (G3) on July 23 at Saratoga Race Course.
“Depending on how she comes out of the race, we’ll look at the Lake George at Saratoga,” Abreu said. “I’d say a mile to a mile and 1/16 is good for her. I don’t want to stretch her out to a mile and 1/8 or a mile and 1/4. Time will tell.”
Cardenas said the pre-race instructions played out like the connections hoped.
“(Abreu) worked out the plan with me and we both agreed to just let her run her race,” Cardenas said. “She likes to be able to run horses down and that’s what she did. She loves doing that and I love her, too.
“We popped out of the gate and let the speed go,” Cardenas continued. “We had a beautiful trip behind horses and when we started to move by the 5/16 pole, she responded really well.”
The Irish-bred Minaun, a Group 3 winner in her native country, won her North American debut on April 30 for trainer Chad Brown at Belmont and earned black type in her first stakes appearance in the country, besting stablemate Nevisian Sunrise by a 1/2-length for second.
“I gave her a turf trip,” said Minaun jockey Manny Franco. “I was inside and trying to work my way out to the clear at some point, but the winner got the jump. When the winner was coming, I was still trying to find my way out.”
Brown, who also saddled the favorite to a second-place finish in the previous race with Always Carina in the Mother Goose (G2), said Minaun did not have the best trip and Nevisian Sunrise was rank at times.
“(Minaun) had some traffic trouble,” Brown said. “My other horse ran well but she was in a fight with the jockey (Irad Ortiz Jr.) for most of the race. It’s tough for a horse to re-break again after being in a tussle for most of the race. For both horses, it just didn’t work out the way I had hoped.”
Sussex Garden, Alda, Bubbles On Ice, Bye Bye, and Lovestruck completed the order of finish. Alwayz Late scratched.
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