CHICA RABIOSA IS FIRST MARYLAND 2YO WINNER
Get Set Go never won a race. Ditto thus far for Chauffeur, her son by Street Sense, or Jerry’s Turn, her three-year-old by Girolamo.
All told, Get Set Go was winless in five career starts, and her two offspring to race are a combined 0-for-17. So it’s perhaps no surprise that Chica Rabiosa, her daughter by Maryland sire Imagining, went for a song at the yearling sale.
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And already Chica Rabiosa has done something neither mom nor siblings ever managed: she’s won a race.
Under jockey J. D. Acosta, Chica Rabiosa was away alertly to set the early pace and went on to win the Saturday opener at Pimlico by 2 1/4 lengths in 54.60 seconds for 4 1/2 furlongs over a sloppy, sealed main track. The waiver maiden claiming contest was the first race for two-year-olds in Maryland this year.
Trainer Claudio Gonzalez has a sprawling operation that includes, he said, about 20 or more two-year-olds and includes a string at Parx Racing. That proved beneficial, as he was able to send his two runners — the other being Cabra Chica — to Parx to train and avoid the local challenges, with only galloping permitted at Laurel Park. His two runners ran one-two in this spot, with Cabra Chica three lengths ahead of beaten favorite Mama G’s Wish.
“They looked good in the morning,” Gonzalez said. “But they had to prove it in the afternoon. And they proved it.”
While Chica Rabiosa led throughout, Cabra Chica rallied from fourth under Angel Cruz to earn the place. It was the first start for all six runners in the race. Chica Rabiosa paid $12.20 to win and topped an exacta with her stablemate that returned $18.90 for a dollar.
Chica Rabiosa was bred in Maryland by the late Bob Manfuso. Gonzalez’s MCA Racing Stable bought her for $7,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic fall yearling sale last year, and she’s now owned by MCA in partnership with Robert Bone.
“The pedigree, I like it,” Gonzalez said. “And the price was not bad.”