Victory Rally hangs on for Geisha victory
Victory Rally (inside) held off Another Broad to win the Geisha Stakes at Laurel Park. Photo by Laurie Asseo.
From a Maryland Jockey Club release
Richard Golden’s Victory Rally, facing stakes competition for the first time, rode the rail under jockey Jorge Vargas Jr. to splash home a gutsy neck winner over Another Broad in the $75,000 Geisha.
It was the second straight win for Michael Matz-trained Victory Rally ($13.80), both under Vargas, and fourth in nine tries at Laurel. The winning time was 1:38.08 for one mile over a sloppy main track.
Sent off at 5-1, Victory Rally had a similar trip to her previous effort Nov. 3 where she saved ground early before opening up for a 6 ¼-length allowance romp. She tracked in fourth as 35-1 long shot Wowwhatabrat sailed through fractions of 23.95 and 47.02 seconds, having plenty of room to scoot up the rail as the pacesetter retreated straightening for home and hold off Another Broad through the stretch.
It was 4 ¼ lengths back to late-running defending champion and narrow 3-1 favorite My Magician in third, who was 1 ¾ lengths ahead of Anna’s Bandit. Wowwhatabrat, Hailey’s Flip, Enchanted Ghost and Riley’s Choice completed the order of finish.
“She was pretty comfortable by the backstretch so I didn’t panic or anything,” Vargas said. “I just sat in the pocket like I did last time, and she just was full of run. When I asked her she was there for me, and that was it.”