Mintd rallies past Juliet Foxtrot under Ricardo Santana Jr. to win the Mint Julep Stakes
Getting a ground-saving trip under Ricardo Santana Jr., Irish-bred Mintd was up in the final sixteenth of a mile to deliver a 12-1 upset of 1-2 favorite Juliet Foxtrot in Saturday’s Grade 3 Mint Julep Stakes at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky..
Trained by Brendan Walsh for the partnership of Bradley Thoroughbreds, Madaket Stables LLC, Team Hanley, Tim and Anna Cambron, Mintd covered 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.92, winning by a half length. Juliet Foxtrot, coming off a G1 victory in the Jenny Wiley at Keeneland in April, finished second under Tyler Gaffalione, 2 1/2 lengths ahead of She’sonthewarpath. They were followed by Handy Woods, Vezpa, Tuned, Lashara and Flash n’ Dance in the field of eight fillies and mares, four years old and up. Crystal Ball, Dominga and Sister Hanan were scratched.
Mintd, a 5-year-old mare by Olympic Glory, was registering her first stakes victory in nine career starts – the first four in her native Ireland and five U.S. starts since March 2020. She paid $27.20 to win.
Longshot Flash n’ Dance led the field of eight fillies and mares through early fractions of :23.90 and :48.66 as Juliet Foxtrot (GB) tracked from second with Hendy Woods in the clear in third and Mintd (GB) rated along the inside in fourth.
Juliet Foxtrot put away the pacesetter while leaving the far turn in 1:13.41 for six furlongs. The odds-on favorite spurted clear at the head of the stretch but Mintd was determined down the lane, drew within a half-length of Juliet Foxtrot (GB) at the sixteenth pole and put her away in the final yards for the win.
“Brendan and his team were very confident in this filly today, which gave me a lot of confidence as well,” Santana said. “I tried to keep her close to the early pace and we had a great trip.”
“It was a tough field on paper with a lot of nice fillies and mares entered,” said Walsh. “This horse has been very progressive in her development. She ran a great race on Kentucky Oaks Day and had a beautiful breeze over the turf (at Churchill Downs). I thought we had a good chance against some very nice fillies and Ricardo gave her a fantastic ride.”
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