BALTIMORE,MD 05-15-09 – Payton d’Oro went right to the front of the field of eight fillies and never looked back to capture the 85th running of the $150,000 Black-Eyed Susan Friday at Pimlico Race Course. A crowd of 23,892 enjoyed the 13-race card that featured seven stakes races and the inaugural Jockey Challenge with former Maryland star Kent Desormeaux taking top honors.
Trained by Larry Jones, who will saddle Friesan Fire for Saturday’s 134th running of the $1.1 million Preakness Stakes, Payton d’Oro defeated Bon Jovi Girl by 1 ¼ lengths the Grade 2 stakes for 3-year-old fillies. The 5-2 second choice of 23,892 ran 1 1/8 miles in a solid 1:49.75 for owners John Ferris and Mike Pressley.
Under a clever and patient ride by jockey Terry Thompson, the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro used her inside post to take control of the race. She was first to pass the quarter-mile markers in .24.21, .48.40 and 1:12.57. When roused by Thompson a furlong from the finish line, the bay filly opened her advantage and captured her four victory in five starts this year. Bon Jovi Girl was courageous in defeat, rallying gamely down the stretch to take second. Casanova Move, the 8-5 favorite, finished third after chasing the leader throughout. Payton d’Oro paid $7.20. Although it took her four starts to break her maiden, she has now won four in a row since then.
The Black-Eyed Susan Stakes Quotes
Larry Jones, winning trainer, Payton d’Oro – “She’s really gotten better ever since she’s gone around two turns. This filly is very talented and we think she has a great future. We’ve got a chance to win the Black-Eyed Susan and the Preakness double, and not a lot of people have done that. We didn’t discuss being on the lead. I trust (Terry Thompson’s) judgment on it. As soon as I tell him to do something, everything could go awry leaving the starting gate. He knows this filly. He’s ridden her every time at Oaklawn. And he’s worked her every work at Oaklawn.”
Terry Thompson, winning jockey, Payton d’Oro – “Being down on the rail, the speed was carrying today if you could get it your way. I took her down into the first turn and no one really contested me. I was able to stay on the rail and sit until we hit the top of the stretch and then I hit the gas. She gave me what she had and ran to the wire.
Tim Ritchey, trainer, Bon Jovi Girl, 2nd – “My horse ran very well. I’m very proud of her today. She didn’t break the best and had a bit of a troubled trip.”
Jose Caraballo, jockey, Bon Jovi Girl, 2nd – “she didn’t get the best of starts. She stumbled out of the gate and got stepped on. She got going, but a little too late. You’ll see more of her.
Jose Lezcano, jockey, Casanova Move, 3rd – “She ran an even race throughout. We were in position to win it, but she had no kick. I don’t know why.”