Gary Barber's Sisterly Love, confidently handled by Eurico Rosa da Silva, once again made every pole a winning one while capturing the featured $151,500 Ontario Matron Stakes Saturday at Woodbine.
The Grade 3, mile and one-sixteenth affair for fillies and mares drew just seven, but once the field turned for home, after Sisterly Love opened four lengths on her pursuers while under a hand-ride, her rivals were going for second money.
At the wire, Sisterly Love, the 4-5 choice, had prevailed by a comfortable three and one-half lengths over stablemate Eagle Hall, with Pure Blue Sky making a belated run for third, in a time of 1:43.41, after earlier fractions of 24.03, 48.38 and 1:12.05.
It was the second consecutive wire-to-wire stakes win for the five-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Bellamy Road-Odylic, following her June 8 score in the mile and one-sixteenth Trillium, when she romped by eight and one-half lengths over Woodbine's Polytrack as well.
“We were concerned, the horse outside (Welcome Dance) has a lot of speed, too,” said Rosa da Silva. “But it worked out very good for us. She broke very well and made the pace. She never stopped running. She's a very nice filly.”
Trained by Mark Casse, Sisterly Love was winning for the fifth time in only eight career starts after not getting to the races at two or three. She won her first three outings last fall and early winter at Calder and Gulfstream Park before being purchased by Barber.
“We were fortunate. Gary bought her after her first three starts and it took us a little while to figure her out,” explained Casse. “But she ran well today. Like Eurico said, I was a little concerned with the outside horse, too. There seemed to be a little more speed today (than when she won the Trillium). But we just decided we're going to go running and if somebody else really wants it (the lead), fine.”
Sisterly Love, who picked up a pot of $90,000 to push her career bankroll to $284,760, paid $3.90, $2.60 and $2.10, combining with Eagle Hall ($2.90, $2.40) for a $11.10 (3-1) exactor. A 3-1-4 (Pure Blue Sky, $4.50) triactor returned $27.10 while a $1 Superfecta [3-1-4-2 (Logan's Peak)] was worth $143.70.
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