Irish-bred Beau Recall, who as a three-year-old filly suffered a nose loss in the Grade I Del Mar Oaks, was on the right side of the photo Saturday as she edged longshot Storm the Hill by the narrowest of margins in the Grade II $200,000 Yellow Ribbon Handicap for older fillies and mares.
With Drayden Van Dyke in the saddle, Beau Recall, now based on the east coast after competing in California for most of her early career, rallied on the rail in the stretch to win a head-bobbing decision over Storm the Hill, a 10-1 outsider piloted by Rafael Bejarano.
Vasilika, the 4-5 favorite seeking her fifth victory without a loss this year, was a close-up third under highweight of 125 pounds, finishing a half-length farther back in third. Julien Leparoux piloted Vasilika in the absence of regular rider Flavien Prat who competed at Saratoga Saturday. Fourth in the field of six was Valedictorian.
Scratched from the Yellow Ribbon were Youngest Daughter, Causeforcommotion and Toinette.
Beau Recall, owned by Slam Dunk Racing and Medallion Racing and trained by Brad Cox, was a strongly-backed second choice at 2-1 and returned $6, $3.60 and $2.20 after her seventh triumph in 24 career outings. First money of $120,000 increased the five-year-old Sir Prancealot mare's earnings to $990,512.
Storm the Hill paid $6.80 and $3, while Vasilika returned $2.10 to show.
Time for the mile and one-sixteenth on the main track was 1:41.23.
DRAYDEN VAN DYKE (Beau Recall, first) — “That incident (near the far turn) cost me at least half a length. I got pushed out. My mare was going good and got thrown off stride. She was game. She was coming good. I was hoping I got there, but I had no idea.”
RAFAEL BEJARANO (Storm the Hill, second) – “She tried. I can't believe I got beat. I knew I had to beat the 4 (Vasilika) and I had her. Then that other filly slips up on me. I can't believe I got beat.”
JULIEN LEPAROUX (Vasilika, third) – “She was in a good position and she ran well. She gave it a good try. I think the slow pace cost us a bit.”
DONNIE BALTHAZAR, assistant to Brad Cox (Beau Recall, winner) – “Brad just told me to keep her happy and get her to the race happy and healthy. Brad called Drayden (Van Dyke) earlier today and then Drayden and I just touched base before the race to go over what Brad said. After that, it was him and her. I was nervous at the finish and then it got even more nerve wracking with the objection. I've come out here before when we have one running, but I've never won a stakes like this.”
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