Dancethruthedawn winner of the 2002 Go For Wand Handicap with Jerry Bailey up.
The feature race at Saratoga on Sunday July 28th was the Grade 1 Go For Wand Handicap for the fillies and mares at 1 1/8 miles. An excellent field of seven was on hand for the event, with the favorite's role going to Canadian champion Dancethruthedawn.
When the gate opened, expected front-runner and 3-1 second choice Miss Linda stumbled to her knees which took her off her game, although she was hustled up to press the early pace to the inside of 9-1 shot With Ability. They led the procession through quick initial fractions of 23.23 and 46.63. Meanwhile, Jerry Bailey rated the 2-1 favorite Dancethruthedawn back in fifth to the outside until the far turn. At the six furlong marker, With Ability gave way to Miss Linda, the latter setting that fraction in 1:10.92, while Dancethruthedawn made her move up to third. Too Scarlet, the longest shot on the board at 28-1, had stalked the early pace in fourth along the rail early, then followed Dancethruthedawn into the stretch, passing the tiring Miss Linda and With Ability, who would finish last. In mid stretch, Dancethruthedawn accelerated away from Too Scarlet, getting the mile in 1:36.68, and drew off to an easy 3 3/4 length victory. The final time was 1:50.21 over a fast main track. 7-1 shot Transcendental, who had been outrun early, came on strong in the stretch out wide to just nose out Too Scarlet for the place spot. Miss Linda tired in the stretch drive and held fourth. This victory finally gave the Canadian-bred daughter of Mr. Prospector and Dance Smartly her first Grade 1 win, after losses in the Kentucky Oaks and Alabama Stakes in her previous attempts.
Purse: $250,000 Distance: 1 1/8 miles
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 5 Dancethruthedawn Bailey 6.20 3.60 2.90 3 Trancendental Velazquez 6.10 4.60 7 Too Scarlet Bridgmohan 5.50
The start of the Go For Wand with second favorite Miss Linda in post position 1 going to her knees at the start. Her jockey Richard Migliore said: "When the gates, opened, the ground broke away from my filly. She had position around the turn around Castellano's horse (With Ability). She didn't have enough in her tank."
Dancethruthedawn passes Too Scarlet in the stretch and starts to draw off. Her jockey Jerry Bailey said: "I saw (Shaun) Bridgmohan and Too Scarlet going in and out. I wasn't sure if he was wrestling with his filly, indecisive or just trying to confuse me. It confused me, so I took my filly outside because I thought I had enough horse to win from there."
Dancethruthedawn coming back after her first Grade 1 win. Her trainer Mark Frostad said: "It makes me feel really good knowing that [Jerry Bailey] is on board. I was happy with the pace. She needs a nice pace to run at. He had her back far enough that it wasn't taking too much out of her. Everything went well."
Dancethruthedawn in the winners circle. Her trainer Mark Frostad said: "When she's gone out of town a few times, she's been more than a little disappointing. We always knew she had a lot of talent. It's probably more my fault than hers, but she's never seemed to be at her best on the big days. I was really happy to see her run that way today."
Trainer Mark Frostad and jockey Jerry Bailey accepting the trophies. When asked if Dancethruthedawn would race in Canada to qualify for another Sovereign Award, he said: "She hasn't run at Woodbine this year, and probably won't get a start up there."
Trainer Mark Frostad and jockey Jerry Bailey discuss strategy in the paddock while Dancethruthedawn listens in.
Second place finisher Trancendental in the post parade. Her trainer H. James Bond said: "My filly ran a great race. We just couldn't get to the winner. John (Velazquez) rode her the way I wanted her ridden. I think she will be able to handle the mile and a quarter, and we'll probably go to the Personal Ensign from here if she comes back well."
Third place finisher Too Scarlet in the post parade. Her jockey Shaun Bridgmohan said: "At the three-eighths pole, there was a little room and I thought it was my opportunity to get out. So I tipped her to the outside. I thought at the top of the stretch, she had enough to fight that other filly off, but she couldn't. She hung in really good for third. I thought she was going to get second, but she was getting a little tired and that other horse (Transcendental) came fast."
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