Laura’s Light Makes The Grade In Sunday’s Sweet Life Stakes

by | 02.16.2020 | 8:49pm
Gary Barber's Laura's Light and jockey Abel Cedillo, left, outleg Lighthouse (Drayden Van Dyke), right, to win the Grade III, $100,000 Sweet Life Stakes, Sunday, February 16, 2020 at Santa Anita Park, Arcadia CA.© BENOIT PHOTO

An impressive minor stakes winner going a mile on turf in her most recent start, Gary Barber's Laura's Light handled a cutback in distance to 5 ½ furlongs with aplomb on Sunday at Santa Anita, as she rallied to take the Grade III, $100,000 Sweet Life Stakes by three quarters of a length. Ridden by Abel Cedillo and trained by Peter Miller, the 3-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Constitution, in her third consecutive appearance on turf, got the distance in 1:02.90.

Breaking sharply from her number five post position, Laura's Light was about two lengths off the lead as eventual runner-up Lighthouse and longshot Spitefulness slugged it out up front. As Spitefulness caved mid-way around the far turn, Laura's Light made an eye-catching move to engage Lighthouse at the top of the lane and after a head and head duel, Laura's Light gained the advantage in the final 70 yards.

“In this game, you have ups and downs,” said Barber, who is also a multiple Academy Award winning motion picture producer. “I loved the way she broke her maiden (Nov. 2 at Golden Gate Fields), so we bought her and she's a really nice filly by a hot sire, Constitution. Getting a graded stakes win is what you want with fillies.”

A galloping 3 ¼ length winner of the one mile Blue Norther Stakes here on Dec. 29, Laura's Light was the 2-5 favorite in a field of seven and paid $2.80, $2.40 and $2.10.

“We were pretty confident,” said Miller, who sent Laura's Light out to second place finish at one mile grass two starts back in the Grade III Jimmy Durante Stakes Nov. 30. “We felt she was the best filly in the race. The five (Lighthouse) put up a really good fight and was stubborn to get by. She's proven now that she can go long or short, so we'll take a look and see what's next. It's nice to have options.”

Ridden by Drayden Van Dyke, Lighthouse, in a huge effort finished 4 ¼ lengths clear of Roadrunner's Honor. Off at 6-1, Lighthouse paid $3.80 and $3.60.

Off at 23-1 with Rafael Bejarano, Roadrunner's Honor paid $4.80 to show.

Fractions on the race were 22.62, 45.19 and 56.75.

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