Include Me Out was successful in her return to the races, winning the $77,070 Desert Stormer Handicap Sunday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Making her first start since finishing third in the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic last Nov. 2 at Santa Anita, the 5-year-old daughter of Include and the Mazel Trick mare Don't Trick Me was well positioned in the clear while close to the pace set by Shumoos, moved up three wide to engage for the lead at the head of the stretch and went on to victory without feeling jockey Joe Talamo's whip
Owned by Samantha Siegel's Jay Em Ess Stable and trained by Ron Ellis, Include Me Out won for the seventh time in 14 starts. A double Grade I winner in 2012, the Kentucky bred has earned $956,030. She paid $10.40, $5.40 and $2.80 while winning by three-quarters of a length in 1:10.32 for the six furlongs over Cushion Track.
“That was a workout for Include Me Out,'' said Ellis after his first Desert Stormer winner. “She's a super filly. She's come back really well from the rest.''
Shumoos, a 10-1 shot, held the place by a head over a troubled Teddy's Promise, the 4-5 favorite. Shumoos, who was ridden by Corey Nakatani, paid $8.80 and $3. The show price on Teddy's Promise was $2.10.
Pinned inside early while racing behind Shumoos and inside eventual fifth place finisher Winding Way, Teddy's Promise encountered traffic woes when trying to move inside the pacesetter entering the stretch.
“(Shumoos) was all over the track,'' said Ellis. “It wasn't just at the top of the stretch. (Teddy's Promise) kept trying to come back. I think she would have won because she's not the best at getting trapped inside. Last year, she totally quit. This year, she tried to fight back. It was a game effort. We'll see about the (Grade II, $200,000) A Gleam (Handicap July 13).''
The win was a meet high eighth in a stakes for Talamo, who has been aboard for all but one of Include Me Out's victories.
“I was real surprised I was that close to the lead,'' said Talamo. “She broke so sharp. I really thought I'd be laying four or five lengths off the pace. We knew we had a good shot today, but this was her first race back.
“She won pretty handily. I think if I would have really asked her, she could have won by more. For her to go from routes to sprinting like that is pretty impressive. That just goes to show how classy she is.''
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