LEXINGTON, Ky.—Slam Dunk Racing and James Branham’s Maxim Rate makes her return to Keeneland in Saturday’s 33rd running of the $300,000 Coolmore Jenny Wiley (G1), and her connections are looking for a better outcome than her initial appearance here in 2019.
“She is a different filly now,” said Carlos Santamaria, assistant to trainer Simon Callaghan. “When she ran here before (a seventh-place finish in the Pin Oak Valley View-G3), she was starting to get a little sour on us.”
After a freshening, Maxim Rate came back with a solid 2020 in which she compiled a 6-3-2-0 record that included a 2½-length victory in the Goldikova (G2) at Santa Anita.
She closed 2020 with a fifth-place finish in the Matriarch (G1) at Del Mar.
“She only got beat 2 lengths at Del Mar and numbers-wise, that was one of her best races,” Santamaria said. “We gave her another break after that, and she liked the time off.”
Maxim Rate jogged 2 miles Friday morning and will jog another mile early Saturday morning before the Coolmore Jenny Wiley. She will be reunited in the stakes with jockey Umberto Rispoli, who was aboard for her three victories in 2020.
“We had pointed her to the race last weekend at Santa Anita (the $200,000 Royal Heroine-G2) or this one,” Santamaria said. “But Mr. Branham lives here and wanted to see her run, so we came here.”
Keeneland Barn Notes
Photo: Maxim Rate wins the Grade II Godikova at Santa Anita October 25, 2020 (Benoit)