Starine won the Filly & Mare Turf in only her second start in May.
The Filly and Mare Turf featured several highly regarded entrants including 3.80-1 defending champion Banks Hill and 2.80-1 favorite Golden Apples, winner of the Beverly D over the same course in August, as well as the Yellow Ribbon Handicap.
Early in the race, 10-1 shot and Epsom Oaks winner Kazzia led the procession with fractions of 24.42, 49.15, 1:13.45, and the mile in 1:38.54. The longest shot on the board, Canadian filly Chopinina, pressed her the whole way in second but tired to 10th on the turn after the pace and distance proved too much. At the top of the stretch, 13-1 shot Starine came from 4th early to gain the lead over a furlong out and drew off to win by 1 1/2 lengths. Banks Hill launched a late rally from 5th early to get second. 4-1 chance Islington had broken slowly and fought back from ninth to finish a neck back of Banks Hill in third. The final time was 2:03.57 for 1 1/4 miles over the yielding course. Favorite Golden Apples failed to fire and finished fourth. Starine was a supplemental entry last year when she finished 10th, so she got in this year without having to pay again.
Purse: $1,000,000 Distance: 1 1/4 miles turf
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 11 Starine Velazquez 28.40 10.00 8.40 5 Banks Hill Bailey 5.60 4.40 2 Islington Fallon 4.80
The second flight under the wire, Banks Hill, Islington, and Golden Apples.
Bobby Frankel, who both owns and trains Starine, greets his winner after the race. He said, "It's a bittersweet win because my best client I just beat (he also trains second place finisher Banks Hill, owned by Juddmonte Farms), so I might not have a job tomorrow. The difference between them is Starine is an absolute freak in the soft going."
Starine in the winner's circle. Jockey John Velazquez said, "I couldn't have asked for a more perfect trip. She broke good and got right into the perfect spot. I was able to just sit on her until we turned for him, and she just did her own thing when I let her go. She likes the soft ground. I can't believe how well it went for her."
Starine in the post parade. Bobby Frankel said: "This isn't the only horse I own. At the beginning after she ran second I put her up for sale and nobody wanted her at the price I put up, so I got stuck with her."
Second place finisher and defending champ Banks Hill in the post parade. Jockey Jerry Bailey said, "She got over the ground OK. She didn't have that same explosive kick. It was more of a gradual finish. Horses that like the firmer ground don't have nearly the same punch over a soft ground. She wasn't losing ground, she just wasn't gaining ground."
Third place finisher Islington in the post parade. Trainer Sir Michael Stoute said, "She got crossed coming out of the stalls and lost her position, and then we were always too far back and had too much to do."
Beaten favorite Golden Apples, who finished fourth, in the post parade. Trainer Ben Cecil said, "She had to check up really bad and then they weren't going quick early. She went very wide in the last part. I don't think the course was a factor. She fired, you've just got no shot with that trip."
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