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BLUE CHIP MATCHMAKER SERIES UNDERWAY
The first division fooled very few in the equine persona of Shartin N (Tim Tetrick, $2.50). Away fourth from the pole, she took over from Gina Grace N (Larry Stalbaum) after that eight-holer made front (27.1, 57.3).
Shartin N blew right by, opening nighttime daylight before a 1:25.3 three-quarters. The lead was three lengths off the final turn and 41/4 lengths at the wire, finding it in 1:54.2, Motu Moonbeam N (Brent Holland) was second as the 47-1 rank outsider, with Shesjustadelight N (Ron Cushing) a decent third after losing the winner's tow.
"Tim, is this one the real deal?"
"I think so," Tetrick said.
For Shartin N, a 5-year-old Down Under daughter of Tintin in America co-owned by Richard Poillucci and Jo Anne Looney-King and trained by Jim King Jr., it was her fifth win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $39.20, with triple returning $261.
The second Matchmaker grouping saw another odds-on Kiwi lass as Sell a Bit N (Jordan Stratton, $2.90) set a dawdling pace (28.1, 58.2, 1:26.4), then held sway in 1:55.2.
Pole-sitting Sell a Bit N took over from Medusa (Scott Zeron), then whip that one by a half-length. Third went to Dudesalady (Brent Holland) after trying it first-up, with Annabeth (Mark MacDonald) fourth.
For Sell a Bit N, a 5-year-old Down Under daughter of Julius Caesar owned by Von Knoblauch Stables and trained by Peter Tritton, it was her fourth win in seven '18 tries. The exacta paid $6, the triple (three wagering choices in order) returned $15 and the superfecta paid $56.50.
"(Sell a Bit N) had three weeks off, so she wasn't 100 percent, but she refused to let anyone pass her," Stratton said.
The short-priced procession continued in Friday evening's third series event. Lady Shadow (Jason Bartlett. $2.90) had things her own way. From post position No. 2, she saw Call Me Queen Be (Zeron) make the first lead. Lady Shadow gained the advantage before a 27.3 opening quarter, then rated a 57.2 intermission.
Safe from Terror (Yannick Gingras) found an eight-hole seat, only to take out of fourth. That turned out to be an ill-advised move, as she backpedaled toward a 1:26 three-quarters. Lady Shadow owned a length-and-a-half lead into the lane, before winning by a half-length in 1:54.3.
Scandalicious (Tetrick) and Eclipse Me N (Dan Dube) rallied for second and third, respectively. Meanwhile, Call Me Queen Be edged from the pocket, but faded to fourth.
For season-debuting Lady Shadow, a 7-year-old daughter of Shadow Play co-owned by (trainer) Richard Banca, D'Elegance Stable IX and Thomas Lazzaro, her career earnings went past $1.94 million, The exacta paid $9.40, with the triple returning $82.
"It's the best she's raced since she's been in the barn," Bartlett said.
The first round,s final foray had the only non-favored winner, as pocketed third choice Twinkle (Eric Goodell, $8.10) was quite handy.
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