Hawthorne Race Course (4/18/15)
Contact: Jim Miller, 708-780-3700
Yahilwa Rallies for Sixty Sails Victory
STICKNEY, IL – D. P. Racing's Yahilwa overcame a poor start to earn her first graded stakes victory in the 37th running of Hawthorne Race Course's Grade 3 Sixty Sails. The race carried a purse of $150,000 Guaranteed and was contested at a mile and an eighth on the main track.
Her connections expected her to contest the early pace but she stumbled at the start and was relegated to fourth place in the early going. Trainer James Cassidy didn't seem to be worried. "I know that she stumbled pretty good at the start but it might have helped. Elvis got her back quickly. She was pretty sharp, keen to go, so I expected her to be right there with the early leaders. But, she recovered and everything was good."
Yahilwa recovered quickly and was prompted to race within striking distance of the early pacesetter, Parc Monceau, by the time they reached the first turn. Yahilwa continued to make up ground on the backstretch, grabbed the lead at the top of the stretch, and continued on to post a two and a half length victory.
Favored Awesome Flower also appeared to have some trouble but hers came in the latter stages of the race. She was blocked for much of the stretch. Rider Miguel Mena believed the trip compromised her chances. "It was just a bad trip. I was bottled up all the way. I didn't get a clear path to run until the end." She did get up for second, just a nose in front of third-place finisher, Ketel Twist.
Albin Jimenez, the rider of third-place finisher Ketel Twist, seemed satisfied with the way his filly finished. "She tried, she wanted to go to the lead but then she probably wouldn't finish. I took a little hold and she finished up well."
Florent Geroux thought the nine furlongs was a factor. "Great trip. She broke very sharp. She went nice and easy on the lead. I was a little disappointed that she wasn't able to finish a little more in the end. The distance may have been a little bit far. She may be better off at a flat mile."
The winner's share of the purse was $90,000 and that boosted the lifetime earnings of Yahilwa to $369,895.
Yahilwa, as the second choice in the wagering, paid $6.40, $2.80 and $2.40.
Awesome Flower returned $2.20 and $2.10
Ketel Twist returned $4.00 to show.
They ran the mile and an eighth in 1:51.13 after fractions of :24.70, :49.11, 1:13.65 and 1:38.63.
James Cassidy was unsure where his filly was going next but was leaning toward Maryland. " We don't have much for her at Santa Anita until June so we might go to Pimlico. I'm not sure if that's the case but that's what it looks like right now."
ABOUT HAWTHORNE RACE COURSE
Hawthorne Race Course races live through Sunday, April 26. Live racing in March takes place every Friday through Sunday. In April, Wednesday cards are added as well. First post daily is 1:50 pm with a special evening card on Saturday, April 25 and a 5:00 pm post. For information, visit our website at www.hawthorneracecourse.com or call Guest Services at 708-780-3733. Fans are welcome at Facebook.com/ClubHawthorne and for up-to-the-minute racing tips become a follower at Twitter.com/ClubHawthorne.