Breaking sharply, It’s Tricky was taken back slightly on the outside as Don’tbeshy I’ll Buy led through an opening quarter-mile in 22.51, pressed closely by Nicole H, who took over to run a half in 45.13. Steadily encouraged by jockey Eddie Castro to remain in contention as the field turned for home, It’s Tricky was put to a drive while racing three wide into the stretch and grabbed the lead with an eighth of a mile to go, drawing well clear in the final stages.
“She ran a mile and a sixteenth the time before, but she broke sharp and was right there,” said Castro. “I had to keep her busy a little bit at the three-eighths, but when she was going, she was going. She was perfect in the stretch.”
It was the second win in as many starts this year for the 4-year-old Mineshaft filly, who last month captured Aqueduct’s Grade 2 Top Flight Handicap to open her 2012 campaign. As a sophomore, It’s Tricky won back-to-back Grade 1 races in New York, taking Belmont Park’s one-mile TVG Acorn Stakes in June, and the 1 1/8-mile TVG Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga Race Course the following month. It’s Tricky now boasts a record of 6-4-0 from 11 starts, with $1,286,500 in career earnings.
“That was very exciting and it’s always encouraging to see these fillies when they come back from their 3-year-old year into their 4-year-old year,” said Godolphin Racing Manager Jimmy Bell. “There are some pretty quick fillies in this race and that certainly was a racehorse time from start to finish. She’s got what we all wish a lot of them had, she’s got tactical speed and can use it at any time and carry it a distance of ground. She can do it short or long, she’s certainly not one dimensional. It’s just great seeing her happy, healthy and really interested in doing what she does best. This is another good step forward.”
Next on It’s Tricky’s agenda will likely be Belmont Park’s Grade 1, $400,000 Ogden Phipps Stakes, 1 1/16 miles around one turn on May 28, a race trainer Kiaran McLaughlin has had penciled in on her calendar for months.
“We’re going to want to run her longer next time, for sure,” said Art Magnuson, assistant to McLaughlin. “I think she couldn’t keep up at the three-eighths pole and [Eddie] wanted her not to fall behind. We’re happy she was here in New York. It’s a long ship across the country, and we’re New York people anyway.”
The late-running C C’s Pal was second, followed by Dontbeshy I’ll Buy, Nicole H, and White Merlot. Aquitania and Her Smile were scratched.