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2010 Flower Bowl Invitational

Ave takes her walk down Victory Lane after winning the 2010 Flower Bowl Invitational.
Date: 10/02/2010

A field of 7 older fillies and mares contested the $500,000 Flower Bowl Invitational Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park, a major prep for the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf. Japanese invader Red Desire was sent off as the 9-5 favorite in this 1 1/4 mile inner turf race, fourth in the Victoria Mile at Tokyo Racecourse last out. In to challenge her included 7-2 second choice Forever Together, third in her last 2 starts, the Diana (G1) and the Glens Falls (G3) at Saratoga, and 4-1 third choice Shared Account, winner of the All Along (G3) at Colonial before finishing a close second in the Diana (G1).

Red Desire (rail), Ave, and Changing Skies (outside) battle in the stretch.

Jockey Julien Leparoux sent 11-1 Gozzip Girl to the front first time past the stands and she was pressed to her outside by Shared Account through slow fractions of 26.05, 53.54, and 1:19.19 over the yielding course, with 8-1 Changing Skies stalking them in third. Entering the stretch, Shared Account took over the lead through 1 mile in 1:44.17, with Red Desire hitting her best stride. The favorite came through on the inside to gain a short lead in mid-stretch, but 10-1 Ave and Changing Skies accelerated late, passing Red Desire in the final 1/16. Ave finished a head in front of Changing Skies in 2:08.54, and it was another 3/4 length back to Red Desire third.

Check out the other races on the card: Jockey Club Gold Cup, Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational, The Beldame, and The Vosburgh.

 #  Horse                Jockey          Win  Place   Show
 5  Ave                 Castellano    23.00  10.00   6.10
 3  Changing Skies       Velazquez             8.90   5.10
 2  Red Desire           Desormeaux                   4.00

Winning Time:  2:08.54

$2 Exacta 5-3               145.00
$2 Trifecta 5-3-2           655.00
$2 Superfecta 5-3-2-8     2,857.00
Results Chart

Left: Ave in the winner's circle. Her trainer Roger Attfield said, "After what happened in the Beverly D., I was pleased for her. When I heard how much rain you had had down there over the past two days, I knew the course would be soft and it was obviously going to be a dawdle, but I didn't think it would bother her. I'm not sure what's next for her; she came into this race very, very well and we'll have to see how she comes out of it and then sit down and talk to the owners."

Right: Ave gets a pat from Javier Castellano after the race.

Left: Ave leaves the paddock. Her jockey Javier Castellano said, "She settled behind horses, we saved ground and I had a perfect trip all the way. I really liked what she did today, (splitting) horses in between. She got it done today. She fought all the way until the end."

Right: Ave in the paddock before the race.

Left: Second place finisher Changing Skies in the paddock before the race. Trainer Bill Mott said, "We didn't know who was going to be the pace maker in the race and obviously there wasn't much pace. We were close and she ran hard. The final furlong she was in front every jump except the last one where it counted." Jockey John Velazquez added, "I knew we were walking. There was no pace in the race and I knew it was going to be 1,2,3. I just sat there and was patient with her and hopefully was going to have something to fire at them and she actually had a good run. You're never happy when you get beat but I'm happy she ran well."

Right: Third place finisher and beaten favorite Red Desire returns after the race. Nobutaka Tada, racing manager for owner Yoko Yamamoto's Tokyo Horseracing Co. Ltd. said "She did well. She's been off for 5 months, it was soft ground, and there was no pace - she had many things against her. It was unlucky for her to finish third, but she was brave." Jockey Kent Desormeaux added, "Turning for home, I didn't think I could lose. I think this set her up for a monstrous effort. I can't wait to ride her back."

Check out the other races on the card: Jockey Club Gold Cup, Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational, The Beldame, and The Vosburgh.

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