Maywood Park's Illinois bred stake season got off to a bit of a surprising start Friday night (April 20) when both $15,000 divisions of the Desperate Lady stake for state-bred second season fillies didn't go as expected.
Dr Nabrinsky pulled off a mild upset in the third race first division, while Mrs Grant Seven produced a stunner in the seventh race second split when she held off the overwhelming 2-5 favourite Faith Leigh as the second longest shot in the race.
Both winners took advantage of leaving from Maywood Park's coveted one-slot.
Mrs Grant Seven was gunned out by driver Jason Dillander and Mike Oosting was trying to do the same with the 5-2 second choice Apache Trick, however that filly made a bad break and eliminated herself, leaving Mrs Grand Seven all alone on the front end and the young filly took advantage of it.
With Chevie Chic scratched due to sickness and Apache Trick far back after going off stride, the heavy favourite Faith Leigh was fourth on the inside in the early going when Mrs Grand Seven hit the first quarter pole in :28.4.
Driver Brent Holland had Faith Leigh out and rolling before the :58.1. It appeared Holland had a lot of horse and coming out of the second turn he had dead aim on the leader. H
owever Mrs Grant Seven had plenty left, holding off Faith Leigh at the 1:26.4 three-quarters and coming home in :28.1, well in hand at the end of a 1:55 lifetime best mile.
"I didn't want to get into a sprint with Faith Leigh," said Dillander. My horse is a big mare and more of a grinder and fortunately we were able to get away with a pretty easy first half. So it worked out real well for us."
Trained by Guy Calvert for Rattlesnake Ranch of Dumont, Colorado, Mrs Grant Seven was making her third second season start after a very busy freshman campaign that saw her go postward 20 times, winning a robust 15 races, 11 on the Illinois fair circuit. She took her first season mark of 1:57.1 at Prairie Meadows.
Faith Leigh, who came into the race fresh off a 1:53.1 victory in the $67,000 Jersey Girl Final at The Meadowlands, was second best this night, beaten two lengths. It was another one and one-quarter lengths back to the third place finisher Odds On Diana (Ryan Anderson)
The first division of the Desperate Lady couldn't have worked out any better for driver Del Chupp if he drew it up ahead of time. Chupp urged Dr Nabrinsky out hard enough from the pole position to get what turned out to be a winning two-hole trip behind the pacesetter Sporty Ellie.
After a very modest :28.4 first quarter driver Ryan Anderson was able to let away with a very slow :30.4 second quarter with Sporty Ellie when the even-money favorite Orgami Rose (Sam Widger), who was in the three-hole, remained there while 10-1 longshot Fox Valley Koochie (Todd Warren) was pulled first over and ended up racing outside of Sport Ellie through a reserved :29.1 third quarter as well.
Once Sporty Ellie got away with those slow middle fractions Chupp was pretty sure his filly would be carried up to the open stretch and it worked out just that way. Dr Nabrinsky came up the passing lane to win her half-mile debut in 1:58.1, one and one-half lengths ahead of runner-up Nancy Irene (Dave Magee).
Sporty Ellie held on for the show spot while last year's Orange and Blue champion Orgami Rose got out and going much too late and had to settle for fourth, two lengths off the winner.
"I wanted to get my filly away in good shape but since it was her first time on a 'half" I had to be a little careful," said Chupp. "I was hoping for an up close trip and it couldn't have worked out any better," said Chupp.
Trained by Les Miller for Robert Le Roy Enterprises of Elgin, IL, the home bred sophomore daughter ofwon for the second time in nine season starts as the 3-1 second betting choice, to go along with a trio of seconds and one third place finish.
Her $7,500 winner's share of the purse more than doubled her 2007 earnings to $14,463.
Courtesy Of Mike Paradise, Publicity Director, Maywood Park