Implicated Unwound for Stakes Debut Score in Chelsey Flower

October 28, 2022

Photo by Susie Raisher

By Ryan Martin

OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Bradley Thoroughbreds, Belmar Racing and Breeding, Cambron Equine and Laura Leigh Stable’s Implicated parlayed a winning turf debut into stakes company, using stalking tactics along the rail and launching a winning stretch drive to capture Friday’s 10th running of the $120,000 Chelsey Flower at Belmont at the Big A.

Implicated led an exacta for four-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Chad Brown, who also sent out Klaravich Stables’ Tax Implications in the 1 1/16-mile inner turf test for 2-year-old fillies. Implicated, by second crop sire Connect, entered Friday’s test off a narrow second-out victory on September 23 over the Big A outer turf run at the Chelsey Flower distance. 

“Today, Implicated was a deserving winner,” said Brown, a now five-time winner of the Chelsey Flower. “She got a great trip, but she did everything she was supposed to do and finished off her race the right way. She was best today.”

Breaking from post 2 under Flavien Prat, Implicated saved ground in third as the field left the chute with the Dylan Davis-piloted Smokie Eyes taking command through an opening quarter-mile in 23.16 seconds over the firm going. 

Photo by Susie Raisher

Through a half-mile 48.08, Lifelovenlaughter launched a bid just to the outside of Implicated, with Prat remaining patient aboard his charge. Past the quarter-pole, Prat tipped Implicated a path wide with Smokie Eyes still the one to catch. Under Prat’s left-handed encouragement, Implicated inched away from the pacesetter just outside the eighth-pole and fended off a late rally from favored stablemate Tax Implications to win by one length in a final time of 1:42.20. 

Tax Implications finished another length ahead of Smokie Eyes. Lifelovenlaughter, The Classy One and Grand Oak completed the order of finish. 

“I had a great trip. She broke well and I was able to get myself right behind the pace. Turning for home, I got a nice gap, and she kicked on well,” Prat said. “I was a bit afraid that they would slow down, but the pace was fair, and it gave me a good chance to get going down the lane.”

Implicated returned $9.10 for a $2 win wager as the second choice and banked $66,000 in victory which enhanced her lifetime earnings to $130,850. 

Now 2-for-2 when contesting over grass, Implicated made her debut over the Saratoga Race Course main track on August 17 where she finished a distant third. She displayed an obvious affinity for the turf in her next two outings, which Brown said he could tell by observing her around the barn. 

“She had a good turf work. I tried her once on it because she gave me a turfy feel walking around the barn just looking at her,” Brown said. “She certainly worked good on it, but then she came back in her final gate work, and she actually breezed solid on the dirt. So, we gave it a shot. A dirt pedigree for sure with a Connect out of a Tale of the Cat, but it just wasn’t to be, so we quickly moved her over to the grass. She’s won a couple in a row now, so good for her.”

Peter Bradley of Bradley Thoroughbreds recalled Brown saying her fondness for the turf was noticeable. 

“She had been working so well on the dirt and finishing with some pretty nice horses,” Bradley said. “She showed she had some talent. Chad worked her once on the turf at Saratoga and she was really that much better on the turf. He worked her back on the dirt and she went very well, so he tried her there first out. He came back and thought she was a turf filly. If there’s someone who can figure one of those out, it’s Mr. Brown.”

Implicated, bred in Kentucky by Somewhere Stables, is out of the Tale of the Cat mare Wysteria – a half sister to graded stakes winner Kallio. Bradley selected her from the Brookdale Sales consignment at the 2021 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Fall Yearling Sale, where she was bought for $125,000. 

Flavien Prat. Photo by Chelsea Durand

“She had the frame. I actually bought her at the Fasig-Tipton Sale almost a year ago to date,” Bradley recalled. “I looked at her about three times and she just kept walking and using herself and I really like when I go back to see a yearling and they aren’t getting tired in the afternoon. Especially, when you know they’ve been out so many times. A lot of others saw her. I just liked her attitude and how she used herself and the fact that she didn’t get tired.”

Jockey Manny Franco said Tax Implications, an impressive first-out maiden winner in September at Monmouth Park, was hard to handle down the lane.

“She was lugging in on me in the stretch and I was a little uncomfortable on her,” Franco said. “They were going pretty fast and then on the backside, they came back a little bit, but I had a decent pace in front of me. She gave me all she had. I got to the clear and she gave me her run.”

Brown said there is a good chance that both of his fillies could receive a freshening in preparation for their respective 3-year-old seasons. 

Live racing resumes on Saturday at Belmont at the Big A with a 10-race card, featuring the Grade 2, $300,000 Kelso – which offers the top-four finishers a free nomination and starting fee in the Grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile slated for December 3 at the Big A. 

Also, to be run on the stacked program are the Grade 3, $200,000 Bold Ruler, a six-furlong sprint for 3-year-olds and upward, the $120,000 Awad at 1 1/16-miles on turf for juveniles and the $120,000 Pumpkin Pie at seven furlongs on the main track for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up. First post is 12:35 p.m. Eastern. 

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