FILLY WINS HER FIRST STAKES RACE SINCE THE 2018 EQUINE SALES OAKS AT EVANGELINE DOWNS
Evangeline Downs Distaff Stakes
Evangeline Downs, 4-26-19, 8 furlongs
Four Year Old and Upwards, Fillies and Mares, $75,000
Breeder: J. Adcock
Owner: Coteau Grove Farms LLCV
Trainer: W. Brett Calhoun
Jockey: Roberto Morales
Tap Dance Star
Star Guitar–Dance by Em
Breeder: Virginia Lazenby
Owner: Virginia Lazenby Racing Stable LLC
Trainer: Oscar Modica
Jockey: Gerard Melancon
Breeder: Earl Hernandez, Keith Hernandez & John Duvieilh
Owner: Earl Hernandez, Keith Hernandez & John Duvieilh
Trainer: Sam B. David, Jr.
Jockey: Sam B. David, Jr.
OPELOUSAS, LA – The $75,000 Evangeline Downs Distaff on Friday night was expected to be a battle between Louisiana heavyweights and old rivals, Hyper Piper and Testing One Two. However, a filly that hadn’t won a stakes race in nearly a year had other plans, as Special Blessing went to the front shortly after the start and never looked back, coasting to a victory by 6-1/2 lengths in a final time of 1:37.58 for the one mile over the fast track.
Special Blessing was able to secure an inside position before the field entered the first turn and used that rail run to her advantage, carving out fractions of 24.06 seconds for the quarter-mile and 47.76 for the half. She really took off entering the far turn and the outcome was never in doubt as the field entered the stretch, as Special Blessing just kept increasing her lead with every stride. Tap Dance Star had been last in the field of six through the early stages, but closed well and beat out Hyper Piper for second. The even-money betting favorite, Testing One Two, was unable to fire after being near the pace early on and faded to finish fifth.
The win in the Evangeline Downs Distaff on Friday night was Special Blessing’s first stakes win since taking the $75,000 Equine Sales Oaks, also at Evangeline Downs on May 4, 2018.
Special Blessing was sent off by the betting public at odds of 9-1 and returned $20.80 to win, $8 to place and $4.60 to show. Tap Dance Star was also 9-1 in the wagering and paid $6.40 to place and $4 to show. Hyper Piper returned $3.40 to show.
Special Blessing was bred in Louisiana by J.Adcock. She is owned by Coteau Grove Farms, LLC, trained by Bret Calhoun and was ridden to victory by Roberto Morales. The 4-year-old filly is by Flat Out and is out of the Langfuhr mare, Langsyne. She has now won five of 12 starts in her career and the $45,000 first-place purse increases her lifetime earnings to $209,030.
Live racing at Evangeline Downs will resume on Saturday night with a nine-race program. The featured event on the program will be the $75,000 Evangeline Downs Classic. Post time on Saturday will be 5:50 pm Central Time.
For more information on the Thoroughbred season at Evangeline Downs, visit the track’s website atwww.evdracing.com. Evangeline Downs’ Twitter handle is @EVDRacing and the racetrack is also accessible on Facebook at www.facebook.com/EvangelineDownsRacing.