With a five-wide blitz around the turn, Patricia Generazio homebred Saratoga Treasure posted a massive upset in the $125,000 Autumn Days on Saturday at Aqueduct Racetrack, beating a quality field of female turf sprinters by a comfortable margin at odds of 17-1.
Originally scheduled for last Sunday, the David Donk-trained Saratoga Treasure benefited greatly from the Autumn Days being moved to Cigar Mile Day, which provided her with an additional week of rest before making her stakes debut on the heels of an allowance win on November 7 on the Big A turf.
“It was a jump up in class, but she really likes the ground and she's certainly on the improve,” said Donk. “Her last three races were real good coming into today, and she ran to it.”
Breaking from outermost post 8 under Eric Cancel, the 4-year-old daughter of Treasure Beach sat in last early as longshot Boos and Broadway Run sparred through an opening quarter-mile of 23.36 seconds on turf labeled 'yielding.' Cancel tipped Saratoga Treasure out a bit as the field hit the turn, angling her to the outside of even-money favorite Fire Key, who was spinning her wheels in midpack, and the pair went progressively wider as they swept around the far turn of the outer turf course, picking off horses as they went.
By the time the field turned for home, Saratoga Treasure had passed all seven of her rivals and had the race well in hand. Under only a mild drive, the New York-bred filly drew off to prevail by 3 ½ lengths and complete the six-furlong dash in 1:11.68.
“She's been running pretty well,” said Cancel, who rode Saratoga Treasure for the first time after picking up the mount from Jose Ortiz. “The last time, she made a really nice run. I just rode her with a lot of confidence. She seems to like the track the way that it is. I tried not to get in her way. I just tried to find the right spot for her and make one big run. Everything worked out really well.”
Saratoga Treasure picked up $68,750 in earnings for her victory, bumping her career bankroll to $305,446. She returned $37.80 on a $2 win wager.
A tight battle for second unfolded behind the winner, with Rocky Policy coming out on top of a three-horse photo to garner runner-up honors. She finished a nose ahead of Rose Flower in third, and it was another nose back to Fire Key in fourth.
Jc's Shooting Star, Broadway Run, Mentality and Boos completed the order of finish. Wildcat Combat, Moonlight Romance, Angel At War, Our Circle of Love, Miss Imperial, Calinas Song, Slimey and Carrizo were scratched.
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