HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Takaya Shimakawa’s Si Que Es Buena made it two straight over the Gulfstream Park lawn on Saturday when she battled hard in deep stretch to defeat her 11 foes in the Grade 3, $200,000 La Prevoyante Stakes.
Breaking from post 7 under Chris Landeros at 7/1 odds, Si Que Es Buena was content to settle in eighth early while Rahway posted opening fractions of :24.24, :50.24, 1:16.09, and 1:42.99. Advancing briskly as the field headed into the far turn, Si Que Es Buena emerged onto the front stretch running four-wide and within striking distance. Given a vigorous ride the length of the stretch, Landeros seemed to will the Graham Motion trainee forward late before crossing with a length advantage in a final time of 2:34.04 for the 1 1/2-mile event over the yielding turf course.
“She’s pretty cool, very game mare,” Landeros said. “I think she’s just getting better with the extra distance, and Graham had her primed and ready, as always. I’m just blessed to be a part of her. I think the sky’s the limit. Let’s just see where we go. I think she’s doing really well. She has her confidence. Graham knows her and is getting to know her even more, and she’s a happy horse.”
After taking the lead in midstretch, the 2/1 favorite Santa Monica looked briefly like a winner before being collared in the shadow of the wire and settling for second. Semper Sententiae also held a brief lead, prior to Santa Monica taking over, then weakened late to finish third by a head over a fast-closing A. A. Azula’s Arch. A neck was all that separated Tricky Escape from Holy Helena for fifth, while Ickymasho took seventh ahead of a spent Rahway. Beau Belle, Top Cats, La Manta Gris, and English Affair completed the order of finish.
Si Que Es Buena’s win was her second straight here following a neck victory over Holy Helena in the $75,000 Via Borghese Stakes on December 29. The 6-year-old Argentinian-bred daughter of Equal Stripes improved her record to 15-7-3-1 with $212,570 in earnings.
“What a great ride,” Motion said. “Gosh, he’s riding good, this kid. I really hadn’t ridden him until he came to Gulfstream. He rode her very patiently. She handled softish ground at Aqueduct. Chris rode such a patient race. That’s what won the race for us. I give him a lot of credit. She’s a very good filly.”
Si Que Es Buena returned $17 to win, $6.40 to place, and $5 to show. Santa Monica brought back $3.80 to place and $3.20 to show, while Semper Sententiae paid $6.40 to show.