Marketsegmentation extends her stakes-winning streak to two in the Beaugay (Chelsea Durand)
By Mary Eddy – NYRA Press Office
ELMONT, N.Y.— Klaravich Stables’ Marketsegmentation made the grade for four-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Chad Brown in Sunday’s Grade 3, $175,000 Beaugay, a 1 1/16-mile Widener turf test for older fillies and mares, at Belmont Park.
Brown, who also saddled runner-up Consumer Spending and fourth-place Veronica Greene, earned his sixth Beaugay triumph after the daughter of American Pharoah stalked close to the pace set by Evvie Jets and pounced to the lead at the stretch call, driving home strongly under Irad Ortiz, Jr. to land the 2 1/2-length victory.
“I’m really proud of this filly,” said Brown. “She’s really come around and I wasn’t sure exactly what way she was going in the winter. She just continued to get better and my team deserves a lot of credit. They’ve been working with this horse and it has been a little bit of a challenge to get there and keep her healthy and mentally put together. They deserve all the credit here. They have her in great form right now. As she’s raced more, she’s put herself in better position in her races.”
Away cleanly from post 3, Marketsegmentation was coaxed by Ortiz, Jr. to stay close to pacesetter Evvie Jets, who broke sharply from the inside post and was sent to the front of the seven-horse field to mark an opening quarter-mile in 24.06 seconds over the firm footing. Ortiz, Jr. remained patient aboard Marketsegmentation after a half-mile in 48.43 before giving his cue approaching the turn and overtaking the lead from a tiring Evvie Jets after three-quarters elapsed in 1:11.99.
Marketsegmentation gained a three-length advantage at the stretch call and powered home under urging from Ortiz, Jr. while her Manny Franco-piloted stablemate Consumer Spending gave a late run down the lane after stalking in fourth. Marketsegmentation arrived at the wire first in a final time of 1:41.25 with Consumer Spending holding onto place honors by a neck over fellow closer Surprisingly.
The Brown-trained Veronica Greene rounded out the superfecta with Contemporary Art, Evvie Jets, and Finest Work completing the order of finish. Kalifornia Queen was scratched.
Brown praised the ride by Ortiz, Jr., who brought the filly up closer to the pace than in her last effort when she closed from seventh-of-9 to win Gulfstream Park’s Sand Springs on April 1.
“I thought Irad used good judgement to get some good forward position in a race that might have lacked some pace,” said Brown.
Ortiz, Jr., who has ridden Marketsegmentation in 5-of-6 lifetime starts, said a good break was key to his mount finding graded success.
“Last time, she missed the break and she was uncomfortable the whole way in-between horses and checking back and forth, but she still got the job done,” said Ortiz, Jr. “So, I just wanted to make her life a little easier today. I didn’t want to give her too much to do. I helped her at the break and she gave me the first jump, so I go for it and I sat second in stalking position, biding my time and waiting for the time to go. She was there for me.”
Brown spoke highly of the seasonal debut from graded stakes-winner Consumer Spending, who had not raced since a fourth-place finish in the Grade 2 Lake Placid in August at Saratoga Race Course.
“It was a great first run back and I liked the trip she got quite a bit – saving all the ground and finishing off really good,” said Brown. “She was able to hold on for second over a really nice filly. I think she’ll move forward off this race and I feel like she needed this race fitness wise.”
Jockey Manny Franco, who returned to Belmont Park Sunday after finishing a well-executed fifth in the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby aboard Hit Show Saturday, said Consumer Spending will benefit from more seasoning.
“She ran very well,” said Franco. “The other one had been running at Gulfstream and my filly had been out for a little bit, so I think my filly will step up for the next one.”
Marketsegmentation, bred in Kentucky by Marcus Stables, finished a close third in the Grade 3 Endeavor in February at Tampa Bay Downs in her graded debut. She improved her lifetime record to 6-4-1-1 with her Beaugay win and banked $96,250 in victory, boosting her total career earnings to $308,730 and returning $5 for a $2 win ticket.
Brown said it will be a big decision to choose between the one-mile Grade 1 Just a Game on June 10 or the 1 1/4-mile Grade 1 New York on June 9 as a potential next target for any of his Beaugay finishers.
“I’m not really sure as far as the New York goes,” said Brown. “It seems like the Grand Canyon between distances between the Just a Game and the New York, and you don’t want to pick wrong. I’m going to think about it and see how they come out of their races. It’s a nice dilemma to have.”
Brown added that Marketsegmentation’s Beaugay performance shows she may handle added ground.
“She might stretch out; she was sharp enough to be prominent, but also she’s a big, powerful horse that seems to motor through the wire in her works and her races right on out. It wouldn’t surprise me if she could get a mile and a quarter,” said Brown. “We’ll just have to think about it.”
Live racing resumes Thursday at Belmont with a nine-race card. First post is 3:05 p.m. Eastern.