Candy Light Hunts Stakes Score in $135K Winter Memories

November 11, 2022

Candy Light wins an allowance at Keeneland Oct. 13 (Coady Photography)

By Keith McCalmont – NYRA Press Office

OZONE PARK, N.Y— Trainer Graham Motion will saddle Fortune Racing’s multiple stakes-placed Candy Light in Sunday’s $135,000 Winter Memories, a 1 1/16-mile outer turf test for sophomore fillies at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Motion, who sends out Pao Alto in the co-featured $135,000 Artie Schiller in Race 8, will look to sweep the day’s stakes action with Candy Light, who returns to stakes company in Race 6 off a sharp allowance win on October 13 at Keeneland.

The 4-year-old Candy Ride dark bay made her first two starts on turf, including a fourth-place finish in December at the Big A, before graduating at fourth asking in February over the Laurel Park main track. She followed with a runner-up effort in the Beyond The Wire in March on the Laurel main track, returning two months later to finish off-the-board in the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan in May at Pimlico Race Course.

Candy Light has since focused on turf racing, utilizing a deep-closing approach to finish third in the nine-furlong Virginia Oaks – won by returning rival Spirit And Glory – in September at Colonial ahead of a stylish one-mile allowance win last out at Keeneland with returning rider Joel Rosario up.

“She’s doing well,” Motion said. “She’s coming off a perfect trip at Keeneland with Joel. I can’t say enough about the ride. He gave her the most beautiful, patient ride and saved all the ground.”

Motion said Candy Light appreciated the cut back to one mile last out after three consecutive starts at nine furlongs.

“I doubt she would want to go much further than that,” Motion said. “She’s aggressive in the mornings, and sometimes that can be misleading and make you think they want to go further.”

Motion said Candy Light, who worked a half-mile in 49.80 over the Fair Hill dirt Saturday, will benefit from Rosario’s confident handling from post 4.

“She can be a little bit of a tricky filly. She’s tricky in the mornings and can be a bit of a handful. It’s important to me that Joel can stick with her,” Motion said.

The $200,000 OBS June 2-Year-Olds and Horses of Racing Age Sale purchase is out of the Pioneerof the Nile mare Queen Yolanda, who is a half-sibling to graded-stakes winner Mississippi Delta.

Spirit And Glory takes the Virginia Oaks (Coady Photography)

Stakes-winner Spirit And Glory, trained and co-owned by Robert Falcone, Jr. with Michael Nentwig, Michael Dubb, Beast Mode Racing and John Rochfort, made a memorable North American debut in June with a last-to-first rush to capture an optional-claimer over firm Belmont turf.

The Cotai Glory bay was off-the-board next out in the one-mile Grade 3 Lake George in July at Saratoga, but found immediate redemption with a strong closing kick to take the Viriginia Oaks.

Last out, Spirit And Glory was last-of-8 through the first two points of call in the nine-furlong Grade 2 Sands Point on October 15 here before rallying to finish fifth, defeated three lengths.

Kendrick Carmouche will ride from post 2.

Christophe Clement will saddle a trio of in-form contenders in search of his third Winter Memories score in Cedar Hill’s graded-stakes placed Myriskyaffair [post 7, Dylan Davis], Bella Mia Stables’ multiple stakes-placed New York-bred She’s a Mia [post 6, Trevor McCarthy] and West Point Thoroughbreds and Dream With Me Stable’s Parnac [post 10, Javier Castellano]. Clement has previously won this event with Feel Glorious [2019] and Plum Ali [2021].

Myriskyaffair, a 4-year-old Verrazano grey, boasts a record of 8-2-3-2 for purse earnings of $205,150. She finished a game second in her stakes debut in the nine-furlong Grade 2 Wonder Again over yielding going in June at Belmont. The ultra-consistent homebred enters from a gate-to-wire score in a 1 3/16-mile allowance test on October 23 at Belmont at the Big A.

She’s a Mia, a 4-year-old Astern dark bay, closed to finish second to Vergara in the Tepin last November when in the care of her former conditioner Cleveland Johnson. She was transferred to Clement for her sophomore season, posting a record of 6-2-3-0 thus far, including a narrow head defeat to Dream Central in the state-bred Suzie O’Cain traveling 1 1/16-miles in July at Saratoga. She enters on a two-race win streak against fellow state-breds over the Big A turf, including a 1 1/16-mile allowance win on October 8 over good going followed by a last-to-first rush on firm footing to take a one-mile optional-claimer just 12 days later.

She’s a Mia, bred in the Empire State by McMahon of Saratoga Thoroughbreds, is out of the Here Comes Ben mare Dear Willa.

Parnac, a 4-year-old French-bred daughter of Zarak, launched her career in Germany with a pair of wins for her former conditioner Andreas Wohler, including the Grosser Preis der Mehl-Mulhens Stiftung last October at Hanover. She made her North American debut for Clement in July with a fourth-place finish in a one-mile turf allowance at Belmont ahead of a close runner-up effort at the same distance in August at Saratoga.

She enters from a rallying head score in a one-mile allowance over firm footing on October 29 at the Belmont at the Big A.

Four-time Eclipse Award-winning conditioner Chad Brown will also send out a triple threat in Michael Dubb, The Elkstone Group, Louis Lazzinnaro and Michael J. Caruso’s multiple graded-stakes placed Eminent Victor [post 5, Manny Franco], Peter Brant’s Veronica Greene [post 8, Irad Ortiz, Jr.] and Stephanie Seymour Brant’s Salimah [post 3, Jose Ortiz].

Eminent Victor captures the Wild Applause (NYRA/Coglianese)

Eminent Victor, a 4-year-old daughter of Mr. Z, earned a Grade 1-placing with a rallying third-place finish in the Natalma last September at Woodbine when 1 1/4-lengths back of runner-up Pizza Bianca, who exited that race to win the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Del Mar.

She captured the one-mile Wild Applause in her seasonal debut in June at Belmont ahead of a close runner-up effort to stablemate Dolce Zel in the one-mile Grade 3 Lake George in July at Saratoga. Eminent Victor was fifth in the Spa’s Grade 2 Lake Placid in August and enters from a third-place finish in the nine-furlong Grade 2 Sands Point on October 15 at Belmont at the Big A.

Veronica Greene, by Tapit and out of the multiple stakes-winning Kitten’s Joy mare Adorable Miss, was purchased for $260,000 at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale. She enters from a fourth-out graduation traveling one-mile over firm footing on September 18 at Belmont at the Big A.

Salimah, a 4-year-old El Kabeir grey, has won 2-of-3 starts, including a rallying one-length score last out in a 1 1/16-mile allowance on September 30 at Belmont at the Big A. She is out of the stakes-winning Dark Angel mare Promised Money.

Shadwell Stable’s stakes-placed Kentucky homebred Tasweya [post 9, Jorge Vargas, Jr.] was a prominent second in the 1 1/16-mile Christiana in July at Delaware Park. Trained by Michael Pino, the sophomore daughter of Frosted enters from an off-the-board effort in a one-mile optional-claimer on October 20 at Laurel Park.

Hail To (NYRA/Coglianese)

Rounding out the field is Woodslane Farm’s Kentucky homebred Hail To [post 1, Jose Lezcano] for trainer Tom Albertrani. A two-time winner from 10 starts, Hail To set the pace last out in the Sands Point before fading to seventh.

By Kitten’s Joy and out of the Dynaformer mare Dynaire, Hail To is a full-sister to multiple graded-stakes winner Sadler’s Joy. Her half-brother, the multiple graded stakes-placed Wolfie’s Dynaghost, is entered in Sunday’s Artie Schiller for Albertrani.

Missy Greer and Tizzy in the Sky are entered for the main-track only. First post on Sunday’s nine-race card is 12:20 p.m. Eastern.

America’s Day at the Races will present live coverage and analysis of the Aqueduct fall meet on the networks of FOX Sports. For the broadcast schedule and channel finder, visit https://www.nyra.com/aqueduct/racing/tv-schedule.

NYRA Bets is the best way to bet every race of the Aqueduct Racetrack fall meet. Available to horseplayers nationwide, the NYRA Bets app is available for download today on iOS and Android at www.NYRABets.com.

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