Gamble's Ghost, patiently handled by Eurico Rosa da Silva, rallied six-wide down the lane to capture Sunday's $140,000 Grade 3 Trillium Stakes, at Woodbine.
Trained by Josie Carroll for owner-breeder Ivan Dalos, Gamble's Ghost arrived at the 1 1/16-mile Tapeta route from a rallying third in the Trillium prep while making her seasonal debut. A winner of four of seven starts in 2017, the five-year-old daughter of Ghostzapper-Gambling Girl would not be denied on Sunday with a ground-saving trip organized by da Silva who completed a sweep of the weekend stakes having taken the Steady Growth Stakes on Saturday with Mr Havercamp.
My Arch Enemy set the Trillium tempo marking off splits of :23.92 and :48.42 under the close watch of Ickymasho and Boreale, as da Silva and Gamble's Ghost found a home along the rail racing next to last after leaving from the outside post in a field of eight.
My Arch Enemy maintained a precarious lead through the turn coming under siege from Malibu Bonnie, Ickymasho, Sister Nation and Grizzel. However, it was Gamble's Ghost, angled off the rail late in the turn who powered down the centre of the track to take the spoils by a half length over Ickymasho. My Arch Enemy stayed on for show over Grizzel. Gamble's Ghost stopped the clock in 1:43.61.
Da Silva was full of praise for the talented dark bay mare who took her cues in a professional manner.
“We had a wonderful trip,” said da Silva. “I was able to save a lot of ground. In the turn, when we turned home, I had a chance to shift her out and she kicked from there. She kicked so strong. She's a wonderful horse to ride. So easy and a very kind horse.”
The victory marked the first stakes win of the meet for Carroll who previously saddled Gamble's Ghost to Grade 3 scores in the Mazarine in 2015, the Selene in 2016 and the Maple Leaf Stakes last season.
“She's so special. She's so honest and shows up every time,” said Carroll. “She ran hard against a speed bias last time and didn't quite get there. She just shows up. She's just a good horse.”
Sent off at odds of 7-2, Gamble's Ghost paid $9.30, $4.80 and $3.50. She combined with Ickymasho ($4.30, $3.10) for a 10-4 exacta worth $39. A $1 trifecta of 10-4-3 (My Arch Enemy, $3.60) paid $83.15 and a $1 superfecta of 10-4-3-1 (Grizzel) returned $240.10. Sugar Jones and Silhouette were scratched.
Live racing continues Wednesday evening at Woodbine, with first race post time set for 6:45 p.m.
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