Darley Stable’s 5-year-old English homebred mare Criticism was Group 3-placed during a modest career in France but she’s taken her game to a new level since coming under the care of trainer Tom Albertrani last fall, winning two of three U.S. starts, including the $125,000 The Very One Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park.

Ridden by Edgar Prado, Criticism broke sharply and took command early in the 1 3/8 miles turf test, was allowed to set slow fractions while setting the pace, and had plenty left in the stretch to coast home a 2½ lengths winner over Swettenham Stud’s 4-year-old Irish-bred filly Dress Rehearsal.

A daughter of Machiavellian, Criticism was making her first start since capturing the Long Island Handicap (G3) going 12 furlongs at Aqueduct on Nov. 1 in her second American outing. She paid $6 to win as the favorite Sunday after being timed in 2:15:23 over the firm course. Paul Pompa Jr.’s Backseat Rhythm finished third, 1¾ lengths behind the runner-up in the bulky field of 13 fillies and mares.

Winning Jockey Quotes

Edgar Prado:

“We got in good position and that was pretty much it. The first quarter (pace) was slow and the second quarter was even slower, so I didn’t want to take too much out of her, but it wasn’t anything too tough. It was an easy ride. We galloped most of the way. That’s why she had plenty left (at the end).”

Winning Trainer Quote

Tom Albertrani:

“I didn’t see any other speed going into the race, so I wasn’t surprised she ended up on the lead. When I saw the slow fractions (51:24 & 1:17:30), I felt pretty sure she would go on from there. She’s trained well since she got here. One of her greatest assets over here is that she’ll go a mile-and-a-half and a lot of the others won’t. If all goes well, we’ll bring her back here in the Orchid (Mar. 22 – $150,000 (G3) at 1 ½ miles). Hopefully, later this year we can get to win a Grade 1 with her.”


24:94, 51:24, 1:17:30, 1:41:03, 2:03:72 & 2:15:23