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LEXINGTON, KY – Paradise Farms Corp. and Parkland Thoroughbreds’ Stunning Sky surged in the late stages to win Friday’s $150,000 Pin Oak Valley View Stakes (G3) at Keeneland.
Stunning Sky broke from post 11 as the 5/1 second choice under Ricardo Santana Jr. and sat at the rear of the field, ahead of just How Ironic, while Outburst led through opening fractions of :22.71, :46.23, and 1:10.50.
Princess Grace got the first jump on Outburst in the stretch, taking over command at the 1/8 pole, but a rallying Stunning Sky charged her way to the front 3 jumps from the wire.
The Mike Maker trainee crossed a 1/2-length the best while completing the 1 1/16-mile firm turf route in 1:41.33.
“She broke pretty good,” Santana Jr. said. “The pace was pretty hot. The race set up perfectly for her. Turning for home, she switched leads to her right leg. She gave me everything she had.”
A hard-luck Princess Grace held off a late-running How Ironic to save second by a 1/2-length, while Witez outkicked the 3/1 favorite Duopoly by 1 length for fourth.
Outburst, Sugar Fix, Antoinette, Walk In Marrakesh, and Pranked completed the order of finish.
In Good Spirits and Lucky Betty were scratched.
Stunning Sky’s win was her first at the stakes level and came while cutting back from her fourth-place finish in the 1 5/16-mile Dueling Grounds Oaks at Kentucky Downs. The 3-year-old Declaration of War filly, second in both the Lake Placid Stakes (G2) and the Saratoga Oaks at Saratoga earlier this summer, improved her record to 11-3-2-1 with $304,825 earned.
“I was very pleased with the fractions,” Maker said. “The race didn’t shape up the way I thought it would, but I left it in Ricardo’s hands and he rode a great race. She ran some game races, unlucky to lose, at Saratoga. Very deserving. Such a big, classy filly.”
Paradise Farms Corp. claimed Stunning Sky for $50,000 from Parkland Thoroughbreds, who purchased her for $100,000 at auction and later bought back into the filly.
Stunning Sky returned $13.80 to win, $6.40 to place, and $4.80 to show. Princess Grace brought back $9.40 to place and $7.20 to show, while How Ironic paid $10.60 to show.
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