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Juvenile Pacing Fillies Take Centre Stage


Published: October 7, 2009 1:44 pm ET

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A trio of $104,000 divisions of the Joe Parisi Memorial International Stallion Stakes has placed the two-year-old pacing fillies front and centre during this afternoon's card of racing at the Red Mile in Lexington, Kentucky.

National Season's Mark For Higher And Higher In First Division

Students from the Tracy Brainard barn seem to be on a mission for the top this year. That mission did not cease in the opening International Stallion division Wednesday afternoon, as Higher And Higher was much the best.

Driver Dave Palone took the juvenile daughter of Western Terror off the gate after leaving from Post 2. The duo sat fourth as One Last Kiss (driven by Ron Pierce) led the field past the opening quarter in :26.4.

When Palone asked the Bluegrass winner for pace up the backstretch, the filly responded in full. She vaulted to the lead in an instant and cleared before tripping the second call in a sharp :55.1.

In rein to Houlihan in fourth spot, driver George Brennan pulled his filly first over for an advance on the final turn, but there was no denying Higher And Higher on this day. Palone and the Bulletproof Enterprises-owned filly blazed the past the three quarters in 1:23.1. The filly was straight and on her game in the final quarter, as she paced home with seeming comfort en route to a dominant, open-length score in 1:51.2. The win time went down as a national season's mark for the division.

The Jack Darling-trained and John Campbell-driven Ticket To Rock finished sixth, while Artcam and pilot Tim Tetrick finished third.

"She (Higher And Higher) was very good," Palone said in a winner's circle interview afterward. "I wanted to stretch her out a bit because she's got to go to Canada (Woodbine Racetrack) for the Breeders Crown."

Palone went on to say that, "as the card goes on today, I think that (1:) 51.2 is going to hold up as a very good mile."

The pilot said that he likes Higher And Higher's chances in the Breeders Crown. "I just think she's a little fresher than some of the other fillies right now."

Put On A Show Remains Flawless In Second Division

Fillies with Canadian connections sat one-two at the head of the lane in the second of the International Stallion Stakes divisions. When the dust settled, it was all Put On A Show, who hit the wire first with a well-earned 1:53 win for driver Jody Jamieson and trainer Chris Ryder.

Put On A Show, who previously captured the Shes A Great Lady and a division of both the Eternal Camnation and Bluegrass Stakes, extended her career undefeated streak to seven via the International Stallion victory.

Jamieson and the Rocknroll Hanover filly eased off the gate and occupied the five hole early. Having made a very quick quarter-pole move, driver Mike Lachance and the Bob McIntosh-trained You See LA were hustling their way from fifth to the lead prior to the :28.4 first call. The duo cleared after the quarter and Jamieson and Put On A Show then sat fifth.

There wasn't any movement in the race before the 57-second half-mile pole. Jamieson then sent Put On A Show, a daughter of Rocknroll Hanover, first up as the final turn loomed. Jamieson's move flushed cover. Opting to not take any chances, Canada's leading driver tipped Put On A Show three-wide.

Having leapfrogged past the other filly which had taken the overland route, Jamieson and Put On A Show engaged the front-stepping You See LA in the lane. With Jamieson in control, his filly stayed on her manners through the lane and went on to post the victory.

You See LA held on for second. Skinny Dip and pilot John Campbell rounded out the triactor.

"Last week she was hot, bothered and was grabbing on a bit -- she just wasn't herself," Jamieson said of Put On A Show when she lowered her mark to 1:51.4 in a division of the Bluegrass last week.

"Being the top trainer that he is, Chris worked with her this week and she was great out there today."

When asked whether there were any anxious moments in regard to where he was sitting at the half, Jamieson said that all he had to do was look down and se the filly he was driving.

"Any time you're in that position you're a little concerned. The half came up in 57 (seconds). Mike (Lachance) had slipped to the front pretty quickly. All I had to do was realize the horse I was sitting on and just take it from there."

On making the decision to tip his filly three-wide, Jamieson did not seem bothered one bit. "We weren't going much until that point, so I just let her go wide and do things herself. Chris had her 'two fingers' today. I just turned the key and she did the rest."

Casino Nights A Sharp Winner In Third Division

Western Ideal filly Casino Nights may have been beaten after racing first up in the Bluegrass Stakes last week, but the same can not be said for her effort Wednesday in the third and final division of the International Stallion Stakes.

Tim Tetrick was again calling the shots aboard the Noel Daley trainee and the duo did not disappoint.

With horses firing out from the outer post positions, Tetrick and Casino Nights took the conservative approach from the rail spot. The pair got nestled away fourth and held that position past the :28.2 opening quarter and :56.2 half.

Tetrick pulled his mount first over past the half and started to grind away at the front-stepping Siri Hanover (driven by Ron Pierce) along the final turn. Casino Nights was hot on Siri Hanover's heels at the three quarters were recorded in 1:25.1.

Driver Andy Miller had worked out a second-over route off of Casino Nights' cover, but was unable to convert the winning move in the lane. It was Casino Nights that just drove on en route to the 1:52.3 win.

"She had pop-out earplugs added this week and they really helped today," said Tetrick, who indicated that he felt the equipment adjustment was needed after the filly got beat after the same move last week.

When asked if the filly would be making the journey to Woodbine Racetrack to contest the Breeders Crown, Tetrick said, "I hope so. She my 'Crown' horse."

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