Lexington, KY --- Three divisions of 2-year-old filly pacers were in the spotlight on Friday at The Red Mile in the $256,000 International Stallion Stakes.
USTA/Mark Hall photo Parlee Beach captured the ISS opening division in 1:51 over Nikki Beach.
Parlee Beach was the fastest out of the gate and took the field to the opening quarter in :27.3. She yielded to Nikki Beach down the backstretch and that lass put up middle panels of :55.4 and 1:24 with Parlee Beach sitting in the garden spot.
Turning for home, Parlee Beach pulled off the wood and she and Nikki Beach put on a terrific battle to the wire with Parlee Beach ($6.40) just getting up in a tight photo. Miss Madi M picked up the show dough.
"I talked to Ron before the race," said winning trainer Bob McIntosh. "We’d been backing her off and hadn’t really left in quite a few starts, so I said she’s got a little gate speed, might as well use it. She responded with a good race.
"She’s a pretty special filly. She won in (1):50.4 well in hand. She went through a little streak there where she wasn’t quite herself, but today it looks like maybe she’s moving in the right direction now.
USTA/Mark Hall photo Authorize came from well off the pace to win the second division of ISS in a lifetime best 1:51.1.
Mattie Terror Girl was in front at the :27 opening panel and then yielded to I Luv The Nitelife who cut middle fractions of :54.3 and 1:23.1.
Heading for home, Authorize found racing room on the far outside and paced by the leader to hit the wire a coimfortable winner. I Luv The Nitelife held for second with Mattie Terror Girl third.
"I was trying to keep my eye on Brian (Sears on I Luv The Nitelife)," said Palone. "I knew they were going pretty good. She’s got one wicked run if you can save her coming off the turn.
"You couldn’t have scripted any better for me. She did fire home good. I know that she’s come home in :25.4, so if you can conserve her for one big run, it can work out. This is the perfect place for her."
USTA/Mark Hall photo Hit The Curb won the third ISS division in a three horse photo in 1:51.2.
South Pacific and Dave Palone cut the fractions in this mile, taking the field to the quarter in :27.4, the half in :55 and the three-quarters in 1:23.
Hit The Curb sat third throughout the mile, then found racing room in the strech and headed to the front with Novascotia Hanover on her outside and Art Ideal coming up the inside. At the wire it was Hit The Curb on top in a tight photo over Novascotia Hanover, with Art Ideal third. South Pacific faded to sixth.
"She was great training down all year," said owner Skip Spring, "but when we got to the races she got warm on us and we had a difficult time keeping her under control. She was beating herself. Today we were determined to get her in a hole somewhere and see if she could come, and she did. Speed has never been a problem for the filly, just rating her.
"It’s just luck. We followed the same path with Hit The Curb as we did with Bunny Lake. We put just basically in the New York Sire Stakes. We came down to Lexington to test them against the really good fillies and see how we could compete. It looks like we may be going to the Breeders Crown."