Kissedbyanangel wins the Maryland Juvenile Filly (Jeff Snyder/Maryland Jockey Club)
David Joseph/Maryland Jockey Club
LAUREL, Md.— Joanne Shankle’s Kissedbyanangel, claimed out of a victory in her mid-September debut, kept Sheilahs Warcloud at bay the length of the stretch to register a front-running triumph in Saturday’s $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly at Laurel Park.
The 37th running of the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly served as co-headliner with the 42nd edition of the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile, both races for Maryland-bred/sired horses sprinting seven furlongs.
It was the sixth career start for Kissedbyanangel ($5), third in stakes company, and first since running third – 3 ½ lengths behind runner-up Sheliahs Warcloud – in the Maryland Million Lassie Oct. 14.
Kissedbyanangel broke alertly under jockey Angel Cruz and went straight to the front, going the opening quarter-mile in 24.26 seconds pressed by Determined Sail, stakes-placed on turf but making her first start on dirt. Big Earn raced in third along the rail with Sheilahs Warcloud in the clear in fourth.
The half went in 48.05 seconds as Sheilahs Warcloud swept into second on the outside under Xavier Perez, setting the stage for a drive to a wire through the stretch. Kissedbyanangel edged clear inside the eighth pole to win by two lengths in 1:24.94.
“I just told Angel, ‘Ride your race,’” Shankle, who also trains the winner, said. “He knows the filly. ‘If he can get an easy lead, just go,’ and it worked out.”
Big Earn came with a late run to nose out second-time starter Binnie for third, followed by Lucky Cougar, Determined Sail, Still Game and Little Crybaby.
Kissedbyanangel was claimed for $12,500 out of a 6 ¾-length win Sept. 10 at historic Pimlico Race Course. Eighth in the 1 1/16-mile Selima on the Laurel turf in her subsequent start, she ran third in the Lassie and second in a six-furlong optional claimer Oct. 28 before winning a similar spot going one mile Nov. 17.
“I just looked and she was Maryland-bred by Golden Lad so we just took a shot,” Shankle said. “She’s improving every day.”