ARCADIA, Calif. (June 17, 2017)–Joe Turner’s homebred Sircat Sally, the lone California-bred in the field, remained unbeaten on Saturday at Santa Anita, as she took the Grade II, $200,000 Honeymoon Stakes by a diminishing neck over Irish-bred Beau Recall. Ridden by Mike Smith and trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, Sircat Sally got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:46.92.
A tracking second throughout behind longshot Tap It All, Sircat Sally, with Pacific Wind to her immediate inside, engaged Tap It All three furlongs from home while Pacific Wind had to apply the brakes. At the quarter pole, “Sircat” was in command and was all-out to hold off the late charge of Beau Recall.
“I just felt like if I turned my filly loose, I’d get to Tap It All because she’s got some turn of foot,” said Smith in reference to the winner. “I just didn’t want to pull the trigger too soon and I was forced too (by the inside move of Pacific Wind), a good sixteenth of a mile too soon to be honest with you.
“I had to turn her loose a little bit sooner than I would have liked, but I knew that the class she has should hold off the rest of the field.”
The overwhelming 1-5 favorite among a half dozen 3-year-old fillies, Sircat Sally paid $2.60, $2.10 and $2.10.
A daughter of Surf Cat, out of Turner’s In Excess mare, Sister Sally, Sircat Sally is now a perfect seven for seven. With the winner’s check of $120,000, she now has earnings of $528,860.
“That’s the advantage of having speed, or tactical speed,” said Hollendorfer. “I thought Mike rode her beautifully. We got the win and that’s what we wanted. It’s not supposed to be easy for a Grade II…We’re going to Del Mar, so there’s plenty of stuff for us to look at down there.”
Ridden by Joe Talamo, Beau Recall, who had a perfect trip, finished 1 ¼ lengths in front of Pacific Wind. Off at 9-2, she paid $2.60 and $2.20.
“Turning for home, I really thought I was going to win,” said Talamo. “I had a ton of horse. Hat’s off to the winner, she really dug in pretty hard that last part. My filly is so nice and tries so hard every time. The mile and one eighth suits her really well, and maybe even further.”
Ridden by Jaime Theriot, Pacific Wind, who was also off at 9-2, paid $2.10 to show while finishing 1 ¼ lengths in front of longshot Zaffinah.
Fractions on the race were 23.79, 47.31, 1:11.29 and 1:35.29.