IRISH-BRED LADY PRANCEALOT UP TO WIN GRADE I, $300,000 AMERICAN OAKS BY A HALF LENGTH AS BRAVO & BALTAS TEAM FOR 1 ¼ MILE ON TURF IN 2:01.70
ARCADIA, Calif. (Dec. 28, 2019)–Irish-bred Lady Prancealot notched her second consecutive graded stakes victory as she outran California-bred Mucho Unusual by a half length in a thrilling finish to Saturday’s Grade I, $300,000 American Oaks at Santa Anita. Trained by Richard Baltas and ridden by Joe Bravo, Lady Prancelot split horses a furlong out and finished with a rush to get the mile and one quarter over a “good” turf in 2:01.70.
Taken in hand by Bravo early, Lady Prancealot was full of run at the rail while a close sixth as the field went under the wire in the first run by the Grandstand. With longshot So Much Happy carving out legitimate fractions for the conditions, Bravo had a ton of horse under him as the field straightened up for the stretch run, at which point he was able to split horses and out-run a gallant Mucho Unusual, who had a similar trip under Joel Rosario.
A three quarter length winner of the Grade III, 1 1/16 mile turf Valley View Stakes at Keeneland Oct. 18, Lady Prancealot was off as the 8-5 favorite in a field of eight sophomore fillies and paid $5.20, $3.00 and $2.40.
Owned by Jules Iavarone, Michael Iavarone and Jerry McClanahan, Lady Prancealot picked up $180,000 for the win, increasing her earnings to $547,841. With her first Grade I victory in hand and her third graded stakes victory, Lady Prancealot is now 17-5-4-3 overall.
Mucho Unusual, one of two California-breds in the field, was off at 3-1 and paid $4.00 and $3.20.
Pretty Point, who was off at 24-1 with Mike Smith, paid $5.80 to show.
Fractions on the race were 24.45, 48.67, 1:13.80 and 1:37.96.