Evvie Jets surges up the rail to capture the Ballston Spa (NYRA/Coglianese)
NYRA Press Office
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.— The Estate of Robert J. Amendola’s Evvie Jets, trained by Mertkan Kantarmaci, won her second graded stakes in an impressive upset of Thursday’s Grade 2, $300,000 Mohegan Sun Ballston Spa, for older fillies and mares going 1 1/16-miles over the inner turf.
Evvie Jets, known for doing her best running on the lead, found herself 9 1/2 lengths off of the pace at the half-mile call, but saving ground under jockey Manny Franco, who picked up the mount from the injured Luis Saez. As the race’s favorite Technical Analysis, who bested her last time out in the De La Rose, weakened after battling for the lead, Evvie Jets crept closer before surging along the rail to win by a head.
“She was very strong closing this week. I hope anytime she finds a hot pace like that, she will do that,” said Kantarmaci. “I think before this win, we had to be very close to Technical Analysis but couldn’t be. This time, she got bothered by a different horse, which worked out in our favor. We just waited in the fourth position on the rail, saving ground in the turn, to make the stretch closing.”
The daughter of Twirling Candy is now 3-for-5 this year, with the other two wins coming at the stakes level in the Plenty of Grace in April at Aqueduct and Perfect Sting in July at Belmont, which were both run at one mile.
Kantarmaci confirmed the 5-year-old bay came away from the victory in good order. The performance earned a 90 Beyer Speed Figure.
“It’s perfect. She deserved this. She had the Grade 3, and now she’s Grade 2. Hopefully we can make Grade 1, too.” Kantarmaci said.
Evvie Jets made the grade in October’s Grade 3 Noble Damsel at Belmont at the Big A. Regarding a possible title defense in that race, Kantarmaci said, “She deserves higher. A higher race. Maybe in Kentucky.”
A possible next outing is Keeneland’s Grade 1 First Lady slated for October 7, going one mile – a distance Evvie Jets has five victories at inside of her 22-7-6-2 record, with $698,680 in earnings.
Bred by Farfellow Farms in Kentucky, Evvie Jets was a $75,000 purchase at the 2019 Keeneland September Yearling Sale. She was haltered for $80,000 by her current connections out of a runner-up effort at Belmont during her 3-year-old campaign.