Nelson McMakin’s Turfway Park-based Hot Cha Cha thrived on her home course advantage as she circled the field on the turn for home and drew away for a six-length romp in the $150,000 Bourbonette Oaks (Grade (III) on Saturday at the Florence, Ky. track.
Orlando Mojica rode the winner, a daughter of Cactus Ridge who has made all five of her career starts over the Polytrack oval at Turfway Park. She won for the third time in five races after she launched her career in a pair of claiming races. Hot Cha Cha covered the one-mile distance in 1:37.22.
“It’s just too soon,” said Sims. “It’s a long summer. There are races like the Arlington Oaks, which is on the Polytrack. I think that’s where she needs to be, and maybe turf.”
Favored Fitz Just Right edged Instrumentalist for second in the field of 10 3-year-old fillies.
STARDOM BOUND SETTLING IN AT KEENELAND
Champion Stardom Bound has settled into new surroundings at Keeneland, where the 3-year-old daughter of Tapit will continue her preparation for a scheduled start in the $400,000 Ashland Stakes (GI) on April 4.
The champion 2-year-old filly of 2008 is now under the care of trainer Richard Dutrow Jr., who saddled Big Brown to take last year’s Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) at Churchill Downs. She has won five consecutive Grade I races, including two – the Las Virgenes and Santa Anita Oaks – since her purchase for $5.7 million at the Keeneland November Sale by a partnership that includes IEAH Stables, Paul Pompa Jr., Michael Dubb and Golden Goose Enterprises LLC.
Stardom Bound was saddled by Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel in her two starts for her new owners. She has won five of seven career races and earned $1,780,600.
SOUTH/SHE’S OUR ANNIE SURPRISES IN PRIMA DONNA
Destiny Oaks’ She’s Our Annie led all the way to score a mild upset victory in Sunday’s $50,000 Prima Donna Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
Trained by William Fires and ridden by Jon Court, the trainer’s son-in-law, the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro cruised to an easy 2 ½-length victory in the six furlong race. On the Menu was second and odds-on favorite Auspicious was a well-beaten third in the field of four 3-year-old fillies.
The winner covered the distance in 1:09.03 over a “fast” track.
SOUTHEAST/JUSTWHISTLEDIXIE WORKS FOR BONNIE MISS
West Point Thoroughbreds and partners’ Justwhistledixie, the surprising favorite over Fair Grounds Oaks (GII) winner Rachel Alexandra and champion Stardom Bound in only pool of the 2009 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager, breezed an easy half-mile on Saturday in preparation for Friday’s $200,000 Bonnie Miss Stakes (GII) at Gulfstream Park.
The Kiaran McLaughlin-trained filly covered the distance in :50.85 over a “fast” track at Palm Meadows training center. The winner of the Davona Dale (GII) has won three consecutive stakes races.