With even-money favorite Lewis Bay softened up by a pace duel, Martini Glass capitalized to earn a graded breakthrough in Monday’s $200,000 Royal Delta (G3) at Gulfstream Park. The 8-1 overlay wasn’t winning out of turn, especially in light of her runner-up effort to Songbird in last summer’s Delaware H. (G1) and another top-level second in the Spinster (G1).
A claiming success story since trainer Keith Nations haltered her for $16,000 out of her winning debut, Martini Glass has now compiled a record of 22-9-5-2, $653,675, across both dirt and turf.
Lewis Bay was embroiled right and left early. The favorite matched strides with Curlin’s Approval on her outside as Giulia hustled up on the rail through an opening quarter in :24.01. Giulia backed out down the backstretch, and Lewis Bay gained the slim advantage over Curlin’s Approval at the half in :46.48. Putting that rival away after six furlongs in 1:10.86, Lewis Bay entered the stretch in command.
But her position was already tenuous, for Martini Glass was on the march. Well placed just off the pace by Paco Lopez, she was full of run rounding the far turn and clearly moving with greater purpose than Lewis Bay straightening for home. Martini Glass rolled to a one-length decision in a final time of 1:36.48 for the one-turn mile, rewarding her backers with an $18.40 win mutuel.
The slow-starting Tale of Verve got going late for third, another 3 1/4 lengths behind Lewis Bay. Next came Unbridled Mo, Curlin’s Approval, Tapa Tapa Tapa, Surprise Wedding, and a tailed-off Giulia.
Campaigned by Vince Campanella in partnership with the trainer’s Nation’s Racing Stable, Martini Glass was winning her second notable race of the Gulfstream meet. She’d captured the December 2 Claiming Crown Tiara on turf, but that didn’t count as a black-type score. Now she has one to go along with her six stakes placings, including her most recent third in the January 28 Houston Ladies Classic (G3) back on dirt.
Martini Glass was bred by Aschinger Bloodstock in Kentucky. By Kitalpha, a full brother to Kingmambo, the five-year-old mare is out of the winning Run Softly mare Glassy, from the extended family of Grade 2 victor Montserrat.