ARCADIA, CA, MAY 4, 2014–Coming from well off the pace as usual under Joe Talamo, Nashoba’s Gold rolled to a stylish one-length victory in Sunday’s Grade II, $200,250, Honeymoon Stakes at Santa Anita Park, the third win from four career starts for the gray daughter of Smart Strike trained by Carla Gaines for owner/breeder Warren Williamson.
It was the second straight stakes win for Nashoba’s Gold, who took the Grade III Providencia Stakes by one length on April 5 under Talamo, who has ridden her in all four of her races, finishing second in the China Doll Stakes on March 8.
Sweet Bliss, the longest shot in the field of six at 29-1 with Aaron Gryder aboard, nosed out second choice Diversy Harbor for the place. Margot Machance was fourth.
Nashoba’s Gold covered the distance under 117 pounds on a firm course in 1:48.61 and earned $120,000. She paid $3.40 to win as the odds-on favorite.
“She’s a very special filly,” said Gaines after the win, adding that the Grade I, $350,000 American Oaks at 1 ¼ miles on turf May 31 would be next for Nashoba’s Gold.
“We had a great trip,” said Talamo, who moved to the outside of the three fillies to her inside in mid-stretch to win under a long hold in the final yards.
“Once you get the momentum going, she’s like a freight train,” the 24-year-old Talamo said. “She was amazing. I never did hit her. I just urged her a little bit and once she got in front, she just coasted home.
“I don’t think there are any distance limitations for her. The further the better. I could just tell galloping after the races; sometimes I need the outrider to pull me up because she just wants to go . . . hopefully, she can be as good as her sister was. She’s the sister to Nashoba’s Key, which was my first Grade I winner when I was 17.”
Live racing resumes at Santa Anita on Thursday, with first post time at 1 p.m.