There were a slew of stakes races across the country this weekend from Santa Anita to Aqueduct and several points in between.
$100,000 Mine That Bird Derby - Sunland Park
The $100,000 Mine That Bird Derby us a prep race for the Grade 3 $700,000 Sunland Derby, which then pages the way for the winner to earn 50 points toward the 2020 Kentucky Derby. SIR RICK went to the early lead and set an opening quarter of :24.26. TOP DRAW pulled away on the inside and the pair set a half mile time of :48.25. Through the second turn, SIR RICK pulled ahead by a nose and then opened up down the stretch to win by four lengths with a final time of 1:44.23. TOP DRAW hung on for second and STACKIN SILVER took third.
$200,000 Buena Vista Stakes (G2T) - Santa Anita Park
KEEPER OFTHE STARS stayed off the pace while JOLIE OLIMPICA set fractions of :23.23 and :46.49. KEEPER OFTHE STARS closed the gap three wide on the second turn, running from six lengths back to two and a half lengths to wear down the leader and take the win. JOLIE OLIMPICA finished second under a strong hand by Mike Smith and MUCHO UNUSUAL rallied for third to beat LADY PRANCEALOT.
$100,000 World of Trouble Sprint Stakes (G3) - Gulfstream Park
JACKSON broke from post 5 and bumped ADMIRAL LYNCH, who then interfered with SWEETONTHELADIES and LASTING LEGACY. ADMIRAL LYNCH made it to the lead and set fractions of :22.52 and :45.15 while maintaining a lead by a length. As they turned for home, JACKSON moved outside to challenge the pacesetter and EPIC DREAMER made a move from third on the outside. JACKSON turned ADMIRAL LYNCH late to take the win by three-quarters of a length. EPIC DREAMER held on for third.
$100,000 Maddie May Stakes - Aqueduct
NICKY SCISSORS went to the front to lead the field through fractions of :23.45 and :47.14. 34-1 COURAGEOUS GIRL challenged while ICE PRINCESS bided her time in fourth. Out of the turn, ICE PRINCESS made her move while COURAGEOUS GIRL took the lead at the six furlong mark. Heading for home, ICE PRINCESS dug in and overtook her on the outside and drew away by two and a half lengths. MYAWAYA finished third five and three quarters lengths back.
Downthedustyroad Breeders' Stakes for Arkansas-breds is named after the Arkansas-bred Grade 1 winning filly trained by Bob Baffert. After the break, BYE BYE J stalked MATAPAN through fractions of :22.78 and :46.60. At the top of the stretch BYE BYE J took control and drew away from MATAPAN to win by a length and a half in 1:10.50 for six furlongs over a fast track. MATAPAN held on for second followed by GEORGIA'S REWARD finished third, three and a half lengths behind the runner up.