January 28, 2023

Change of Control shines in rainy Franklin County

Rain did not dampen Change of Control's kick in the Franklin County at Keeneland (Coady Photography)

Change of Control made it a clean sweep of Keeneland’s turf sprints for older fillies and mares this season by taking the $150,000 Franklin County S. (G3) on Friday.

Contested in a driving rain, which obscured visibility, it proved best to be up close. Change of Control, who captured the Giant’s Causeway S. during the Keeneland spring meet in April, was only a couple of lengths behind in fourth as the field made its way around the far turn. Up front, longshot Ambassador Luna set modest splits of :22.66 and :47.18 on the increasingly saturated ground.

In the stretch, Change of Control was asked to go by Colby Hernandez and readily moved past the tiring pacesetter on that one’s outside. With no significant challengers making a rally, the five-year-old won comfortably enough by 1 1/2 lengths.

Owned by Perry Harrison and trained by Michelle Lovell, Change of Control paid $14.60 after completing 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:05.89 over ground rated soft.

Ambassador Luna, sent off at 62-1, held second by neck over 6-5 favorite Campanelle, who rated near the back but could not close sufficiently in the conditions. In Good Spirits won a three-way for photo for fourth over Lagertha and Yes It’s Ginger, while Catch a Bid, Lead Guitar, Violenza and She’s So Special completed the order of finish.

In addition to the two stakes wins at Keeneland this term, Change of Control also captured the June 3 Intercontinental (G3) at Belmont Park. She’s placed in four other stakes this season, including the Unbridled Sidney S. and the Royal North (G2), both of which she lost by less than a length. Her only disappointing run in 2021 had been her last-of-10 finish when stretching out in the Woodbine Mile (G1) on Sept. 18.

“She’s been so classy and so talented,” Lovell said. “She gives so much every single time we put her in the gate. She’s been awesome.”

Change of Control, who also captured the 2019 Mamzelle S. earlier in her career, now boasts a line of 30-8-6-6, $656,775.

Bred in Kentucky by John O’Meara, Change of Control is by Fed Biz and out of the multiple stakes-placed America’s Blossom, by Quiet American.