MALIBU MISCHIEF WINS SIXTH STRAIGHT
Malibu Mischief, a 4-year-old filly owned and trained by Rudy Rodriguez, extended her win streak to six races in impressive fashion by flirting with a track record in her latest triumph Sunday at Laurel Park.
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Sent off at 1-5 in the third-level optional claiming allowance for fillies and mares 3 and up, Malibu Mischief ($2.60) led every step of the way in overpowering her rivals to win by five lengths under a hand ride from jockey Trevor McCarthy.
The winning time of 1:02.48 over a fast main track was just .28 off the course record of 1:02.20 set by 6-year-old Siralfredthegreat Oct. 6, 2018.
“Rudy said make sure you get her away from there and get her away hard because she loves the lead and she doesn’t always get away the best,” McCarthy said. “When we broke so good and we were out there loose, I said, ‘Man, she is smoking but she is so comfortable.’ She’s just got a high cruising speed. I think her performance speaks for itself. She really just kind of kicked away from a good group of horses.”
Breaking from the far outside in a field reduced to five by the early scratch of Charles Town Oaks (G2) winner Fly On Angel, Malibu Mischief rocketed to the front and quickly opened up on her rivals through fractions of 22.44 and 44.73 seconds. I’m the Talent stalked the leader but was unable to keep up and Malibu Mischief rounded the turn well in command and drew off through the stretch with little urging.
“They actually sprung the gate when I was yelling ‘No,’ and when she saw that latch, she was like, ‘See ya,’” McCarthy said. “She’s just so fast, and even when I got to a comfortable lead and I just went to go little easier, she wanted to go. I was just trying to keep her happy. When she hit the turn I thought, ‘Man, she is rolling,’ and every time I tried to just nurse her she was like, ‘No, let me go.’”
The win was the second straight at Laurel for Malibu Mischief following a second-level spot going the same distance Oct. 23 originally carded for the turf. The New York-based Rodriguez spent $12,500 to claim the bay daughter of Goldencents who improved to 10-for-22 lifetime.
Malibu Mischief’s streak began June 7 at Belmont Park, her first start since being eased March 8 at Aqueduct prior to the pause in racing amid the coronavirus pandemic. Rodriguez haltered her July 10 and has won races at Saratoga, Delaware and two in a row at Laurel by 22 ¼ combined lengths.
“I was worried because last time she broke a step slow, but when she broke on top today I said it looked like we were in pretty good position. That’s her weapon and that’s what she wants to do,” Rodriguez said. “She’s been a nice little claim. The first time we try to claim her she pulled up and they voided the claim. Then I let her go a couple times more and said, ‘I’m going to claim her,’ and thank God it’s working out good.”
Rodriguez said he will keep all options open when seeking a return spot for Malibu Mischief.
“I just wanted to win the starter allowance with her but she did it so good and came back so good out of the race. When I ship her to Delaware she did very, very good so I took her to Laurel and she did even better. Now it looks like she can take a step up,” Rodriguez said. “I have to take a look and see where she fits. It looks like we got a filly with a nice future.”