by NYRA Press Release
July 26, 2017
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - The Grade 2, $200,000 Honorable Miss featured three mares with graded stakes win streaks who lived up to their resumes with Juddmonte Farm's Paulassilverlining dueling Finley'sluckycharm in deep stretch before winning by a neck on Wednesday at Saratoga Race Course.
Finely'sluckycharm set the early fractions for the five-horse field, going a quarter-mile in 22.69 seconds with the half 45.46. Disco Chick and Paulassilverlining sat off the pace before jockey Jose Ortiz made a late bid and overtaking Finley'sluckycharm in the final jumps, hitting the wire in 1:10.10 for six furlongs on the fast main track.
"I was hoping [Disco Chick] would go. After the last race she had in Monmouth she was laying back. I was hoping to engage them early, and I saw the rider taking back, so I had to go out and put pressure early," said Jose Ortiz. "I called my filly to run hard before the quarter pole, and Brian [Hernandez, Jr. aboard Finley'sluckycharm] was waiting, he tried to come back on me, but my filly has a lot of heart."
"Probably I would've won anyway, but I didn't want [Finley'sluckycharm] to get big on the lead, she was going easy enough for him, and I didn't want them to get comfortable in there," Ortiz added.
Carrying the 124-pound highweight, Paulassilverlining won her second career start at the Spa after finishing fifth in the 2016 Grade 1 Ballerina.
"She was giving the other filly some weight and she was a real quality horse [Finley'sluckycharm]. Our filly won two Grade 1s in a row and she didn't even go off favored. I thought the leader got away with a real soft opening quarter. For this caliber of race, [it was] not that fast and 'Paula' was able to wear her down. It was a great stretch duel. I'm glad we were able to come out on top," Brown added.
Paulassilverlining has now three straight stakes this year - all by a neck - since moving into trainer Chad Brown's barn. Her first two wins were against Grade 1 competition, including the Humana Distaff on May 6 at Churchill Downs and the Madison on April 8 at Keeneland.
"Jose knows her so well, I really didn't give him any instructions. He timed it just right. She has a lot of heart. [Since] arriving in our barn, she's done nothing wrong," said Paulassilverlining trainer Chad Brown. "She's been a real pleasant addition to our stable: so competitive, a lot of heart, a lot of talent.
The 5-year-old Ghostzapper mare paid $5.30 on a $2 win bet. She has 11 wins in 21 starts in her career and has collected $1,491,230 in purses. Brown said he is going to now point her to the Grade 1, $500,000 Ketel One Ballerina on August 26.
"This was a prep for the Ballerina," Brown said. "We gave her a freshening after the Humana at Churchill. Planning for her race here in the Honorable Miss and leading to the Ballerina that's our plan."
Clothes Fall Off finished fourth, five lengths back, followed by Disco Chick in fifth.