Laura’s Light Prevails By A Neck Over Stela Star In Grade III, $100,000 Honeymoon Stakes

HARD KNOCKING LAURA’S LIGHT PREVAILS BY A NECK OVER STELA STAR IN GRADE III, $100,000 HONEYMOON STAKES AS MILLER & CEDILLO TEAM FOR 1 1/8 MILE WIN ON TURF IN 1:49.02

  ARCADIA, Calif. (May 30, 2020)–Under a picture perfect ride from Abel Cedillo, hard knocking Laura’s Light prevailed by a diminishing neck over favored Stela Star in winning Saturday’s Grade III, $100,000 Honeymoon Stakes at Santa Anita.  Owned by Gary Barber and trained by Peter Miller, Laura’s Light got a mile and one eighth on turf in 1:49.02.

As expected, Parkour darted to the early lead, opening up by about eight lengths as the field headed up the backstretch.  Around the far turn, Laura’s Light began to steadily cut into the leader’s margin, trailing by three lengths turning for home and gaining the advantage approaching the sixteenth pole while holding sway late over the fast finishing Stela Star and Croughavouke.

“She’s a gutty little filly and I can’t say enough about the ride Abel gave her,” said Miller.  “It was a world class ride.  Great judge of pace and knowing when to push the button, that was Abel today…I’m happy for Mr. Barber, this has been a very difficult period for all of us and it’s great to be back racing.  We’ve got a lot of options with her.  Del Mar’s all about turf racing for 3-year-olds and we’re looking forward to it.”

A disappointing fourth as the 4-5 favorite in a one mile ungraded stakes on synthetic Tapeta at Turfway Park March 14, Laura’s Light was off as co-second choice (along with Parkour) at 2-1 in a field of eight sophomore fillies and paid $6.60, $3.20 and $2.80.

“My instructions were to have her break well and Peter told me that if Mike Smith (aboard Parkour) decides to take the lead, let him take the lead and try to relax,” said Cedillo, who rode her to consecutive stakes wins here last winter.  “That worked!  I broke sharp and I saw Mike (breaking from) the outside, so I just let him go.  I knew they were going pretty fast, but I just sat and gave her time to relax.”

A winner of the Grade III Sweet Life Stakes going 5 ½ furlongs on turf two starts back on Feb. 16 and of the ungraded Blue Norther at one mile on turf Dec. 29, Laura’s Light a filly by Constitution out of the Muqtarib mare Light of a Star, now has four wins from six starts and with the winner’s share of $60,000, has earnings of $214,370.

A huge second going a mile on turf in her U.S. debut, the ungraded China Doll Stakes here March 7, Irish-bred Stela Star was far back while fifth after the first half mile and flew late in another big effort, finishing a neck better than fellow Irish-bred Croughavouke.

Off as the 9-5 favorite with Flavien Prat up, Stela Star paid $3.40 and $2.80.

Ridden by Umberto Rispoli, Croughavouke couldn’t quite get by Stela Star late while finishing     2 ½ lengths clear of Red Lark.  Off at 11-1, Croughavouke paid $4.00 to show.

Fractions on the race were 23.26, 46.98, 1:11.66 and 1:36.96.

First post time for an eight-race card, highlighted by the Grade II, $200,000 Santa Maria Stakes on Sunday, is at 12:30 p.m.  Fans are encouraged to wager via 1stBet.com or through Xpressbet.com.  For additional information, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.