May 22, 2019

Lady Paname rallies in Long Island; Plainsman best in Discovery

Lady Paname and jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. win the Long Island Stakes (G3) at Aqueduct on November 24, 2018 (c) NYRA/Elsa Lorieul/Adam Coglianese Photography

Lady Paname improved her record to two-for-two Stateside with a rallying score Saturday in the $402,400 Long Island (G3) for fillies and mares at Aqueduct.

Exiting a photo-finish allowance win at Belmont following a year-long layoff, the Chad Brown-trained daughter of Soldier of Fortune was four lengths behind stablemate Night of England with a furlong to go. Under Irad Ortiz Jr., she kicked on late to prevail by a half-length over Tricky Escape. Danceland won a three-way photo for third over Si Que Es Buena and Night of England.

Owned by the partnership of Madaket Stables, James Covello, Kent Spellman, and Doheny Racing Stable, Lady Paname completed 1 3/8 miles in 2:16.15. She paid $9.90.

“She’s a horse that’s developed and come along nicely for us,” Brown said. “We bought this horse with good intentions and unfortunately, she suffered from some issues right away. I have to thank the ownership group for being patient. We gave her a lot of time off.

“Distance isn’t an issue with her, it just took her a little time to get here and the patience by everyone involved was really rewarded today. I’m really proud of the horse. I thought Irad would fit her nicely and he really has. He’s used good judgment every time he’s ridden her and today was another example. Using good judgment, being patient with her in the lane. Waiting for it to open up and when it did, she kicked away.”

Prior to her importation from France, Lady Paname had placed three of five stakes appearances, including the Prix de Royaumont (G3) at Chantilly in June 2017. Her record now stands at 8-3-1-2, $341,408.

Confronted by all three challengers simultaneously down the backside after setting a slow early pace, Plainsman had plenty left in the tank to pull away from all of them to capture the $186,600 Discovery (G3) for three-year-olds.

The 9-10 favorite under Joel Rosario, Plainsman kicked clear in upper stretch and won in hand by 1 3/4 lengths. Title Ready was second, a half-length in front of Gronkowski. Bon Raison was a distant trailer.

“It was a great ride,” said Dustin Dugas, assistant to trainer Brad Cox. “Joel (Rosario) didn’t panic when everybody came together at the half-mile pole. I got nervous, but thankfully Joel didn’t, and it paid off for us.”

Completing nine furlongs on a fast track in 1:52.14, Plainsman is owned by John Ed Anthony’s Shortleaf Stable. Anthony last won the Discovery 41 years ago, with Cox’s Ridge, in 1977.

This was the first stakes win for the Brad Cox-trained Plainsman, whose only prior stakes try was a sixth in the Arkansas Derby (G1) in April. Moved from trainer William VanMeter to Brad Cox in August, the son of Flatter has now won three straight, preceding this win with two allowance scores. His record now stands at 12-4-3-2, $300,445.

Bred in Kentucky by Joseph Minor, Plainsman was a $350,000 Keeneland September purchase. He was produced by S S Pinafore, a Street Sense three-quarters sister to multiple Grade 3 winner Southdale.

In the $126,875 Aqueduct Turf Sprint Championship, White Flag upset heavily favored stablemate Disco Partner by three parts of a length, blitzing six furlongs on a firm course in 1:07.98.

Owned by Robert Evans and trained by Christophe Clement, White Flag paid $22.60. The winning rider was David Cohen.

White Flag preceded a seventh in last year’s Aqueduct Turf Sprint Championship with a victory in the $100,000 Allied Forces at Belmont and a third in the Nearctic (G2) at Woodbine. Prior to this win, the son of War Front had finished second by a head in the Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint (G3) and fifth in the City of Hope Mile (G2) at Santa Anita.

“He’s always been a nice horse,” Clement said. “He won a stakes as a three-year-old and has been a bit unlucky this year. The last time, when I ran him in California, he came back with a quarter crack. We took care of that, and he ran very well today. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wants to go a touch further, maybe seven-eighths or even a mile.”