While favored Separationofpowers engaged in a wicked speed duel in the early stages of the Spinaway Stakes (G1), Lady Ivanka stalked and pounced on those leaders in midstretch and held off a threatening rail bid from Maya Malibu en route to her first graded stakes victory.
Rudy Rodriguez, Lady Ivanka’s trainer was very relieved by the effort from his filly in her first attempt against stakes company.
“It was a tough test, but we got it done,” Rodriguez said. “She ran a good race; the race set up ran the way we expected, I was a little concerned about the inside horse, but we got it done.”
The Spinaway is a “Win and You’re In” event for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) at Del Mar in November, but Rodriguez did not make any immediate commitments to that race.
“I don’t know. I have to talk to the owners and then make a plan and see what we have to do but it’s very good to be in this position. We’re just going to relax and enjoy this, and I’ll talk to the owners,” he said.
Rodriguez also added that he is confident in his filly’s ability to run farther than the seven-furlong distance of the Spinaway.
“I believe so. I think she’s very good, she’s got a very good mind, she can see, like you see, she’s just sitting there behind horses, she’s been doing that in the morning all the time, so I think she can stretch out.”
Irad Ortiz Jr. was aboard for the win, and was quick to compliment the training job of Rodriguez.
“I got a perfect trip. I broke out of there and just sat there and waited. We were clear on the turn and when I asked her she was there for me. She was ready. Rudy did a good job with her,” he said.
“Her last race was impressive and she did it in a good way. Now here we are in a Grade 1 and she did it.”
Chad Brown, trainer of third place finisher Separationofpowers (who was the 3-5 favorite), blamed the rail draw on the outcome of today’s race.
“The post killed her. It was a bad draw and she got hounded the whole way. She did all the dirty work there and I’m proud of her she worked hard, but it’s just not a good situation to be drawn inside of a real fast horse like Pure Silver [No. 4] and set it up for another horse [Lady Ivanka, No. 3].”
Lady Ivanka was ¾ lengths ahead of runner-up Maya Malibu, who, in turn, was 3 ¼ lengths clear of Separationofpowers, Pure Silver and Obvious Two rounded out the order of finish. The fractions for the race were :22.36; :45.30; 1:10.83 with a final time of 1:24.97.
Lady Ivanka is owned by Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables LLC, Michael Imperio and Susan Montanye. By Tiz Wonderful out of the Officer mare Lady Leftennant, she was bred in Oklahoma by Scott Pierce.