From a Maryland Jockey Club release
The crowd pegged Mrs. Frank Wright’s Lady Sabelia as the 1-5 favorite and she ran to expectations, winning the $100,000 What A Summer Stakes by a comfortable margin over the soggy main track at Laurel Park, the first of four $100,000 stakes races Saturday afternoon.
Horacio Karamanos has ridden Lady Sabelia in every start since her maiden victory, six wins in 10 starts including four stakes. The daughter of Majestic Warrior, who won for the third consecutive start, covered the 6-furlongs in 1:12.01 and crossed the finish line 1-1/4 lengths in front of runner up She’s Ordained. Sounds of the City was third.
“My horse broke good and showed speed but I didn’t want to run heel to heel with the filly (Winning Image) in front,” Karamanos said. “We sat behind waiting. My filly really wanted to go at the 3/8ths pole. We swung outside. She had a nice kick and ran very even down the stretch to the wire.”
The 5-year-old mare, who paid $2.60 to win, won four-of-five races in 2014 for trainer Robin Graham, including the Willa On The Move Stakes here on December 6.
“She is a very nice mare but we had to give her quite a bit of time off when she was younger about six to eight months for her shins and recently she has missed a few starts because of an eye problem. That is why she only raced four times last year,” Graham said. “She always runs well and I never have to give the jockey any instructions. If there is speed she can wait and if there’s not she can go.”
Graham indicated her star would run next in the $300,000 Barbara Fritchie Handicap (G2) here on February 14.
Defending champion Winning Image finished sixth in her final career start. The 8-year-old daughter of Southern Image retires with 14 victories, including 10 stakes scores, in 34 career starts with earnings of $750,237.