Returning to the track for the first time since the Kentucky Oaks, Princess of Sylmar made easy work of the TVG Coaching Club American Oaks (Photos courtesy Coglinese Photos/NYRA).
Princess of Sylmar proved that her Kentucky Oaks wasn’t a fluke on Saturday, returning to the track nearly three months after that win to notch another victory. Making a start in the first Grade 1 race of the Saratoga meet, she easily won the TVG Coaching Club American Oaks by six lengths to become the 3-year-old filly division leader.
Going off at odds of 2.15-to-1, Princess of Sylmar sat near the back of the small pack while My Happy Face cruised on the lead in the 1 1/8 mile race. Not much changed for the group in the five horse field until they hit the far turn where Princess of Sylmar made her move. A few strides into the stretch, it was all the Oaks winner as she pulled away to win in a time of 1:51.07. My Happy Face held on for third while Marathon Lady settled for third.
“I thought she was always traveling really well. There wasn’t a lot of pace in there and they were tightly bunched," trainer Todd Pletcher said. "We made a mistake in the Gazelle when we felt like Close Hatches was the only speed. We kind of took her out of her running style, so I told Javier [Castellano] regardless of the pace, don’t do that, just let her find her rhythm. I think she’s got a very strong closing kick regardless of the fractions; just let her do her thing.”
From the first crop of Majestic Warrior, Princess of Sylmar was bred by Ed Stanco and runs in the colors of Stanco’s King of Prussia Stable. Javier Castellano was on the filly for the third time in the race, she had been ridden by Mike Smith in the Kentucky Oaks.
For an Equibase chart, click here.
PRINCESS OF SYLMAR WON HER SECOND GRADE 1 WITH THIS VICTORY