Hello Beautiful winning the Maryland Million Distaff (Maryland Jockey Club)
LAUREL, Md. – Though her career has been one with far more successes than failures, Hello Beautiful has also shown a resilience to match her talent. Trainer Brittany Russell will be hoping for more of the same from the history-making filly when she caps her 4-year-old season in the $100,000 Willa On the Move Dec. 26 at Laurel Park.
Madaket Stables, Albert Frassetto, Mark Parkinson, K-Mac Stables and Magic City Stables’ Hello Beautiful had a three-race win streak snapped when she finished last of five as the favorite in the six-furlong Politely Nov. 26 at Laurel. Russell said the Golden Lad filly came back well, if agitated, from the performance.
“She was very unhappy after the race, in a just [ticked] off kind of way. She knew that it wasn’t supposed to go like that,” Russell said. “When I went back to check on her, it wasn’t her normal munching her hay. It was like, ‘Get away from me.’ The important thing is she’s doing well, and she’s still Hello Beautiful.
“She’s been fine. She really only ran about a quarter of a mile, if you really look at how it went down,” she added. “She came back no worse for the wear. She’s doing fine, and she’s trained well since.”
Prior to the Politely, Hello Beautiful was a front-running winner of the Alma North at historic Pimlico Race Course and the Weather Vane and Maryland Million Distaff to put her career win total at 10, eight of them in stakes. She is one of only seven horses in event history with three Maryland Million victories.
Hello Beautiful broke from the rail and found herself atypically behind horses in the Politely, outrun to the lead by Princess Kokachin, another speedy type that drew the post just outside the favorite. Jockey Jevian Toledo opted to drop back and then make a run that never materialized.
“I probably should have been a little more clear with Toledo to just kind of stay on that filly. We know our filly. She was a step slow that day, but you’ve got to go. You’ve got to go with her,” Russell said. “They were moving, they were going quick, but that’s our game, too. When she kind of got checked out of there, it was over.”
Toledo climbs back aboard for the fourth straight race in place of Russell’s husband, injured jockey Sheldon Russell, and they drew Post 6 in a field of eight at 124 pounds, a topweight she shares with Call On Mischief and Jakarta.
“You can look at it all different ways, but had our filly drawn outside that filly that day, it might have been a different outcome, too. It’s fine. It happens,” Russell said. “You better learn how to lose races, because we lose a lot more than we win. Just be a good loser and hopefully she bounces back next time.”
Eric Rizer’s homebred Princess Kokachin will break inside Hello Beautiful from Post 3 under regular rider Xavier Perez, looking to extend her win streak to six races. The Politely marked the stakes debut for the Jerry Robb-trained 3-year-old Graydar filly, with all of those victories coming against older horses. She set testing fractions of 21.98 and 45.12 seconds before finishing up in 1:11.22 to win by 5 ½ lengths.
Beaten in the Alma North and May 15 Skipat, also at Pimlico, in two previous trips to Maryland this year, Down Neck Stables’ Call On Mischief is set to make her Laurel debut. She prevailed by a half-length after a prolonged drive to win the six-furlong Mahoning Distaff Nov. 22, and was most recently second in the Garland of Roses Dec. 11 over a sloppy Aqueduct surface.
Five Hellions Farm’s Dontletsweetfoolya captured last year’s Willa On the Move to cap her 3-year-old campaign on a five-race win streak. Winless in her first four starts to open 2021, she went three months between the Runhappy Barbara Fritchie (G3) Feb. 20 and Skipat, and returned to the winner’s circle with a popular 6 ¼-length optional claiming allowance triumph in front-running fashion sprinting six furlongs Nov. 5 at Laurel.
Also entered are Three Diamonds Farm’s Jakarta, a stakes winner making her first start for trainer Mike Trombetta and first dirt start since running fourth in the June 2020 Vagrancy (G3) at Belmont Park; Kaylasaurus, racing first off the claim for Penn National-based trainer Tim Kreiser; Kentucky shipper Miss Mosiac and multiple stakes-placed Paisley Singing.
Maryland Jockey Club Press Release