Monster Sleeping returns victorious
Monster Sleeping (#5) edged Two Wonders to win an April 3 allowance at Laurel Park. Photo by The Racing Biz.
by Frank Vespe
Two-time Maryland Million Ladies winner Monster Sleeping returned to action today and logged the narrowest of narrow victories.
The seven-year-old Oratory mare, trained by Dale Capuano, rallied late to nail Two Wonders at the wire in a race in which the top four finishers all were within a half-length on the line.
It was the Maryland-bred daughter of Oratory’s 10th career win from 48 starts and pushed her career earnings past the $500,000 mark.
Two Wonders and longshot The Bop Express dueled heads apart for the opening three-eighths of a mile before Two Wonders, under Brian Pedroza, asserted control and took a two-length lead at the eighth pole.
That’s when jockey Trevor McCarthy was able to steer Monster Sleeping, making her 2016 debut, to the three path, and from there, she closed stoutly to earn the decision.
“[Horacio] Karamanos [on Charm City] was trying to keep us pinned in and wouldn’t let us out,” said Monster Sleeping’s owner, Chip Reed. “But she’s so strong.”
Running time for the 5 1/2 furlong, grassy allowance event was 1:02.71.
A year ago, Monster Sleeping didn’t debut until June, at Presque Isle Downs.
“This was the first year that we really gave her time when we didn’t have to patch her up a little bit,” said Reed, a longstanding Maryland owner. “She usually had these little body aches, but this year, perfect. She’s been working sensational. We thought she would run a good race, but it was a lot tougher than we thought, a lot closer than we thought.”
Monster Sleeping’s winning margin was a head over Two Wonders, who held off Lake Sebago by a neck; that runner was just a neck in front of Awake the Day.
Reed is hopeful that Monster Sleeping’s good health and earlier start this year can lead to a productive season. He said that she would likely run next in the Dahlia Stakes at Laurel Park on April 16 “and then we’re going to see what happens.”
In the longer term, he said, the goal is an October race for a horse who won the Maryland Million Ladies last year and also in 2013.
“The ultimate goal is always Maryland Million,” Reed said. “That’s what we’re looking for.”