No, we didn't win the race. But we had a blast and Lady had a super first race experience!
She was great in the receiving barn all day. She settled down and relaxed well. It was an awful long wait for that last race. She was happy and excited going to the paddock, acted great all around.
In all the hustle, I was never able to see where she lay in the race. I kept asking, where is she?
She ran 9th. Not a great accomplishment BUT once I talked to the jockey, I was thrilled with her.
This is his report:
She got a bit nervous in the gate when one of the other horses was acting out. She broke a bit slow but really wanted to be involved. When field (moving very fast) started heading in towards the rail, she was in good contention UNTIL- sand hit her in the face. The kickback really made her shy away from the field ahead of her. I just watched the replay and you can see her head goes up and she back off. Well, this accomplished what she wished for- no more sand in her face but it also put her back far enough to be out of real contention.
But here is the good part. Once he got her settled, she really started coming on late.
I've been thinking this filly is a miler. Her owner was pretty convinced she is a short distance sprinter.
This is what Michael asked: She came on strong late, but the race was too short for her. Have you thought about trying her in, oh a mile race maybe?
I actually had to laugh because I initially wanted to put her in at Keeneland for a race on the Beard Course, which is all the way around the track from the shute and comes to roughly 7 furlongs and 183 yards. Lady's owner was worried that may be too much for her, so we waited for something shorter.
Well, I'm about to go dig around in the condition book for a 1 mile on the turf for fillies.
She came back great from the race, wasn't tired, breathing well, cooled out a good 15 minutes before the other horses in the receiving barn and dug right into her hay. She tried to be her usual impatient, wenchy self at bath time and actually tried to kick Jose (a friend of mine who I taught to gallop 2 summers ago and he comes and rides and helps out once in a while and he spent the day with us). She pranced all round the barn, wanted to play and once in her stall was acting like she wanted to go back to the track for more.
We beat 3 very nice horses by a really good margin (one of the favorites, actually) and I am mighty proud of my girl!
Wanted to post this before I get too tired. It's been a long, long day, we all had a wonderfully fun time (including the Ladybug) and we are ready to try again in a couple of weeks.
Her owner's brother video'd the race with his super nice, high tech camera and is going to send me a dvd of it. I can't wait. I will upload it and you guys can watch it. He had a much nicer angle and better zoom going than the tv cameras did, plus he focused on her, so it's a really nice video.