Lovable Lady runs down Jameela upset
Lovable Lady scored the upset in the Jameela Stakes. Photo by The Racing Biz.
From a Maryland Jockey Club release
Making just her second career start on grass and first in a stake, Lovable Lady reeled in favored front-runner Everything Lovely in deep stretch and surged past approaching the wire to upset Saturday’s $75,000 Jameela Stakes at Laurel Park.
The 29th running of the Jameela for Maryland-bred/sired fillies and mares 3 and older was the first of two grass stakes on the 11-race Maryland Pride Day program, preceding the $75,000 Mister Diz for Maryland-bred/sired 3-year-olds and up featuring popular 26-time stakes winner Ben’s Cat.
A 5-year-old Not For Love mare owned by the Samuel H. Rogers Trust and ridden by Horacio Karamanos for trainer Mary Eppler, Lovable Lady ($22.80) ran six furlongs in 1:11.14 over a Fort Marcy Turf Course rated good.
Eppler wanted to give Lovable Lady another try on grass after she finished eighth in her only previous effort, a trouble-filled trip April 24 at Laurel where, though eighth, she was only beaten 4 ½ lengths by subsequent stakes winner Forest Funds.
“It was just a horrendous trip and Horacio said she liked the turf. She only got beat [4 ½] lengths and she got checked, slammed into the rail, squeezed, everything,” Eppler said. “I didn’t want to run her at Pimlico going five-eighths; five-eighths is too short. I though the six furlongs would be great. She’s only been off the board that one time.”
Lovable Lady rated in mid-pack as 25-1 long shot Cowgirl Creed took the 11-horse field through a first quarter in 23.14 seconds. Everything Lovely, a narrow favorite at 2-1 over defending Jameela champion Monster Sleeping, stayed in the clear outside and took command after straightening for home before opening up in the stretch.
“I was thinking, ‘She could catch that horse.’ Even if she didn’t, she was going to run well,” Eppler said. “She wants to be covered up and she wants to sit back and relax. The times when she’s run second or third, somebody’s always pushing her and she just runs as fast as she can and then peters out.”
Karamanos swung Lovable Lady wide and set down for a steady drive down the center of the track, getting up to win by a half-length. Everything Lovely was second, with Monster Sleeping third another 2 ½ lengths back and Dale Capuano-trained stablemate Rocky Policy fourth.
Pret Say Eye, Deliver Me, Sazerac Girl, My Magician, Like a Lion, See What Happens and Cowgirl Creed completed the order of finish.
“My filly is really improving a lot and she relaxed for me today,” Karamanos said. “She broke sharp from the gate and got into a nice, comfortable position. I followed [Everything Lovely] into the stretch and when I asked her she gave me a real nice kick. I just kept her going and she did it very nice.”
Bred by Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Rogers Jr., Lovable Lady now has five wins, two seconds and five thirds with $229,145 in purse earnings from 13 career starts. She has won two straight, including a six-furlong main track sprint June 18 at historic Pimlico Race Course.