Midnight Memories Draws Clear Late Under Vazquez To Take Grade II $200,000 Zenyatta Stakes
FAVORED MIDNIGHT MEMORIES DRAWS CLEAR LATE UNDER VAZQUEZ TO TAKE GRADE II, $200,000 ZENYATTA STAKES BY 3 ¼ LENGTHS & GETS 1 1/16 MILES IN 1:45.07
BAFFERT TRAINEE LIKELY HEADED TO $2 MILLION BREEDERS’ CUP DISTAFF NOV. 5 AT KEENELAND
ARCADIA, Calif. (Oct. 2, 2022)—Ridden aggressively by Ramon Vazquez, Midnight Memories pressed dueling leaders Awake at Midnyte and Soothsay leaving the half mile pole, wheeled three-deep turning for home and marched to an emphatic 3 ¼ length win in Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 Zenyatta Stakes at Santa Anita. Trained by Bob Baffert, Midnight Memories got a mile and one sixteenth in 1:45.07 and will likely be pointed to the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff Nov. 5 at Keeneland.
A gate to wire winner of the Grade III Torrey Pines Stakes at one mile on Sept. 4, Midnight Memories burst clear leaving the furlong pole in what appeared to be her best race to date. A winner of four out of her five starts, was off as the 8-5 favorite among five fillies and mares three and up and paid $5.20, $2.60 and $2.10.
Owned by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman, Midnight Memories, a 3-year-old filly by Mastery out of the Midnight Lute mare Tiz Midnight, picked up $120,000 for the win, increasing her earnings to $286,680.
Head and head for the lead for most of the trip, Awake At Midnyte held the place under Mario Gutierrez, finishing a neck clear of an onrushing Empire House. Off at 9-5, Awake At Midnyte paid $2.40 and $2.20.
Ridden by Drayden Van Dyke, longshot Empire House rallied from last to just miss second money and paid $3.20 to show while off at 23-1.
Fractions on the race were 24.16, 48.26, 1:11.97 and 1:38.21.