Red Camelia Stakes
Fair Grounds, 3-17-18, @ 1 mile, turf, $60,000
Accredited Louisiana Breds, 4-Year-Olds and Upwards, Fillies and Mares
Pioneerof the Nile–Cinnamon Kisses
Breeder: Gulf Haven Farms, LLC
Owner: Zayat Stables, LLC
Trainer: Brad H. Cox
Jockey: Joe Bravo
Mr. Al’s Gal
Salute the Sarge–Spanish Ice
Breeder: J. Adcock & Neal McFadden
Owner: Brittlyn Stable, Inc.
Trainer: Justin Jeansonne
Jockey: Diego Saenz
Breeder: James McIngvale
Owner: HP Thoroughbreds LLC (Brandon Hillman)
Trainer: Ricky Courville
Jockey: Ashley Broussard
By Ryan Martin
Zayat Stables LLC’s Dontmesswithjoanne ($12.60, $5.80, $4.20) laid well off the pace to score and made a big move down the top of the stretch to defeat ten other Louisiana-bred fillies and mares in the 42nd running of the Red Camelia Stakes over the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots’ Stall-Wilson Turf Course on Saturday afternoon.
Trained by Brad Cox, the 4-year-old daughter of Pioneerof the Nile was saving ground around the first turn and was unhurried throughout the early stages of the race. Meanwhile, Florida invader Viva Vegas set a slow pace early on and produced opening fractions of 24.05, 48.77, and 1:15.01. Mr. Al’s Gal tracked not too far behind in second. At the top of the stretch, Viva Vegas’ lead began to dwindle but she still appeared to have something left. However, Mr. Al’s Gal began to purse Viva Vegas to her inside and briefly took the lead, but was unable to hold off a charge from Dontmesswithjoanne who won going away with Joe Bravo in the irons. Mr. Al’s Gal ($6.60, $6.80) was second and 71-1 longshot Pera finished third ($19.60). Dontmesswithjoanne finished in a time of 1:40.48.
“You had those times and with the soft turf I think they got a hold of it,” Bravo said. “With a filly like this you just have to make sure that she was happy. She picked herself and went with it. When you ride the best horse, it’s easy. That’s the bottom line.”
The Red Camelia Stakes was a first stakes victory for Dontmesswithjoanne, which pushed her career earnings to $158,695. She earned $36,000 from Saturday’s win. In 11 career starts, she has won four races with three seconds and one third.
Rounding out the order of finish were Pacific Pink, Viva Vegas, Inveniam Viam, Safari Calamari, P Boo, Temple Shadow, Tap City Baby and Beleiveinsomething.