Escape Clause already has accomplished something that escapes most horses: winning 19 races, done in a career of 28 starts.
The five-year-old mare bred in Manitoba, Canada, captured Saturday's Grade III La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita by 5 ½ lengths under Tyler Baze for owner/trainer Don Schnell and thus cemented her standing as one of the biggest Cinderella Stories in recent years.
By Going Commando-Danger Pay, Escape Clause is believed to be the first Manitoba-bred stakes winner in Santa Anita history. She covered a mile and one sixteenth on a wet-fast track in 1:41.89.
“She came out of the race great and we're looking to run here in either the Buena Vista or the Beholder Mile,” Schnell said Sunday. The Buena Vista is a Grade II, $200,000 event at a mile on turf Feb. 23, while the Beholder is a Grade I on the main track worth $400,000 March 16. “We want to run her back here at Santa Anita; we'll just have to figure out which race.
“She was just built like a horse that was gonna grow up and hopefully be something,” Schnell said in reference to buying Escape Clause as a youngster . . . “I used to say anytime I got a good horse, I'd like to come to Santa Anita and win a race . . . and I'm glad I did now.”
With the $60,000 earned in the La Canada, her first graded stakes win, Escape Clause increased her career earnings to $423,500.
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