The daughter of Malibu Moon – a sharp 12-length debut winner on July 20, opening day at the Spa – was third out of the gate but grabbed the lead by the time the field had left the chute in the 6 ½-furlong race. In front by 1 ½ lengths following an opening quarter-mile in 21.77 seconds, Kauai Katie dismissed a pair of bids through a half-mile in 44.93, and stretched her lead while being driven home by jockey Rosie Napravnik to register a 2 ¾-length victory over Salamera.
“From the gate, I was riding with a lot of confidence,” said Napravnik. “I knew I had a lot of horse underneath me. We were just able to wait. The 6 ½ [furlongs] is a pretty big step from 5 ½ [furlongs] for these babies. She just powered down the lane and she wasn’t at the bottom. Not that I didn’t have to ask her, I did ride her down the lane. She was obviously the best here today. At six [furlongs], I could feel them coming, but they weren’t going to get us today.”
Last year at Saratoga, My Miss Aurelia, owned by Stonestreet Stables in partnership with George Bolton, broke her maiden on opening day and won the Grade 2 Adirondack. She later posted wins in the Grade 1 Frizette at Belmont Park and Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies and was named Champion 2-Year-Old Filly.
“We’ll let the dust settle and talk to the connections and come up with a game plan [for Kauai Katie],” said trainer Todd Pletcher. “[Stonestreet is] fortunate they have at least three really nice fillies, so we’ll have to look at that.”
In addition to training Kauai Katie, Pletcher conditions Dreaming of Julia, a Stonestreet 2-year-old filly who won by 10 ½ lengths in her debut on August 6. Stonestreet also owns 2-year-old filly Teen Pauline, a 4 ¾-length debut winner on July 25, who is trained by Steve Asmussen. The stable is 6-for-6 at the meet.
Stonestreet Stables is operated by Barbara Banke, who has continued the racing operations started by her late husband, Jess Jackson. Kauai Katie is named for their 26-year-old daughter, Katie.
“This is absolutely wonderful and that Katie to watch her namesake run and win is very special,” said Banke. “She was a beautiful filly at the sale. We have her full sister [0-for-6 Malibu Cougar], who’s super fast in the morning, but hates to race. We knew she was from a very fast family.”
Fully Living followed Salamera in third, 4 ¼ lengths behind the winner, and was followed home by Cayllano and Vitameta.