Annabeth (Shadow Play) worked hard to secure the early lead in Thursday’s feature at Saratoga Casino Hotel and once the veteran mare got to front, she proved to be tough as nails. Annabeth got interfered with in last week’s installment of the Fillies and Mares Open but this Thursday, she enjoyed smooth sailing once clearing the lead in a first quarter of 27.3. Following a second quarter breather that led to a half in 57.3, Annabeth was confronted by the race’s favorite Sally Fletcher A (Bruce Aldrich Jr) and those mares slugged it out toe-to-toe for almost a half mile. The Bill Adamczyk-trained eight year old dug in on the front-end and rebuffed the favorite before stopping the timer in 1:54.1 for her first win in the local Open this season. Happy Heart (Mark Beckwith) rode the coattails of the winner throughout and wound up as the runner-up while a game Sally Fletcher A had to settle for third in the $15,000 feature for the ladies. Annabeth, who was driven to victory by Shawn Gray, was the fourth choice among the group of six distaffers in the Open while dismissed at odds of 5-1. She paid $13.00 to win and led an exacta and triple that returned $61.50 and $149.00, respectively.
Live racing resumes on Saturday evening at Saratoga with a first post time set for 6:45pm.
Photo: Mikayla Gray