Local Mare Registers Second Stakes Win in Turf Dash
BALTIMORE, Md. – Joanne Shankle’s Can the Queen, based down the road at Laurel Park, went all the way on the lead and held off favored Honey Pants late to spring a 1 ½-length upset over the New York shipper in Friday’s $100,000 The Very One at historic Pimlico Race Course.
The 29th running of the five-furlong The Very One for fillies and mares 3-year-olds and up sprinting on the turf was the fourth of six stakes, four graded, worth $1.05 million in purses on a sensational 14-race Black-Eyed Susan (G2) Day program headlined by the 98th edition of the 1 1/8-mile fixture for 3-year-old fillies.
It was the second win of the day for jockey Victor Carrasco, riding for trainer Rudy Sanchez-Salomon, and second career stakes win for Can the Queen ($15.60) following the Sensible Lady Turf Dash last July over the same Pimlico turf course. The winning time was 57.09 seconds.
Carrasco wasted no time getting Can the Queen to the front, and the 6-year-old mare blazed through the opening quarter-mile in 22.11 seconds, pushed along by 45-1 long shot Whispurring Kitten on her outside. The half went in 45.22 with Can the Queen still rolling, and 8-5 favorite Honey Pants looking for room. Honey Pants was able to split horses in the stretch to launch a bid but was unable to reel in the winner.
Honey Pants was a length better than Whispurring Kitten in third, with Adelaide Miss two lengths back in fourth. Epic Idea, Phantom Vision, Spun Glass, Payntdembluesaway and Princess Kokachin completed the order of finish.
Can the Queen pressed the pace in her previous start and wound up fourth, beaten 3 ¼ lengths while facing males in the 5 ½-furlong King T. Leatherbury April 23 at Laurel in her season opener. She won two of six starts last year, finishing fourth in the Jameela and seventh in last year’s The Very One, 3 ½ lengths behind Caravel, also after racing near the lead.
Purchased out of a 1977 Maryland 2-year-old sale in Timonium for $22,000 by Maryland horsewoman Helen Polinger, The Very One went on to become one of the best race mares in training from 1977-81. A former claimer turned Grade 1 winner, she won 22 races and more than $1.1 million in purses from 71 starts, with eight graded-stakes wins including the 1979 Dixie (G2) at Pimlico and 1981 Santa Barbara Handicap (G1).
$100,000 The Very One Quotes
Winning trainer Rudy Sanchez-Salomon, Can the Queen: “She has been training really well. We’ve been patient with her. She’s like a baby to us. I ran her against the boys last time and she ran a huge race. My jockey said, ‘The next time, we can’t lose against the fillies. Let’s try it.’”
Winning jockey Victor Carrasco, Can the Queen: “She was running awesome. I didn’t even have to send her much to get into that position. I knew as soon as I said, ‘Go,’ that she was going to be there for me. And she was. She was pretty relaxed the first part. I knew she was doing too good and that she was going to have something left. When I said, ‘Go,’ she was gone.”
Christophe Loriel, Assistant to trainer Christophe Clement, Honey Pants, 2nd: “She was a little bit farther back than we expected. She broke good, then it looked like she was a bit taken for speed early on. Around the turn she came back, but she had to circle around and go inside and outside. At the sixteenth pole, I thought we could get there, but the other one was already gone. But she ran a decent race.”
Maryland Jockey Club Press Release
Photo by Maryland Jockey Club