OZONE PARK, N.Y.— Mosienko, owned by Stacy Lalman and trained by her father, Dennis, has become a familiar name on the NYRA circuit after stringing together an impressive quartet of victories dating back to an August 6 optional claimer at Saratoga Race Course.
The 5-year-old New York-bred daughter of Hat Trick was victorious once again on Thursday at the Belmont at the Big A fall meet, scoring a gutsy victory in Race 8, a 6 1/2-furlong open company optional claimer.
Ridden to victory by Flavien Prat, Mosienko trailed in fifth in the bunched-up field of seven before quickly moving up to second position at the half-mile call. Prat swung the bay mare four-wide at the quarter-pole for her drive to the wire and needed every bit of the stretch to collar pacesetter Patty H, but got there just in time to secure the victory by a head in a final time of 1:16.88.
“She came out of the race really good,” Lalman said. “She ate all her food and looks good.”
Mosienko, Lalman’s only trainee, has blossomed during the second half of this campaign after struggling to find the winner’s circle in her first eight starts of the year. She put it all together with her aforementioned August 6 score and followed with another Spa victory on September 2 when dominating a second-level state-bred optional claimer by 4 1/2 lengths. She stepped up to face open company on September 22 at the Belmont at the Big A fall meet and passed the test with aplomb, turning in another four-length romp sprinting 6 1/2 furlongs.
Lalman said an adjustment in Mosienko’s training regime has allowed her to find her best stride.
“She had been training really good coming into these races, and I always thought she was going to win some races,” said Lalman. “I exercise her myself in the morning, and I saw talent in her early. She’s the kind of mare that’s a little nervous and she used to be hard on herself, doing a lot in the mornings. She was training well, but she wasn’t running to my expectations. So, I started adjusting her training and going slower and lighter. She liked that, and I’ve seen a lot of improvement in her. Everything keeps getting better and she finally put everything together.”
Lalman first noticed Mosienko last winter when she was with conditioner Rudy Rodriguez, impressed that the mare had hit the board in seven of her first 12 career outings. Lalman decided to claim her for $10,000 out of a second-place effort last March. She then made three starts for trainer Luis Miranda, including a runner-up and third-place effort in a pair of claiming contests at Aqueduct and Belmont Park, respectively.
“I got sick a few times with Covid and was in the same barn as Luis Miranda at the time, so I had him take care of her for a little while for me,” Lalman explained. “Her form was really attractive because she was always there hitting the board consistently. I figured if she’s OK and she’s strong, I know she’ll win some races.”
Once under Lalman’s care last August, Mosienko hit the board twice before scoring a 6 3/4-length state-bred allowance victory this February at the Big A and, in addition to her winning streak, has hit the board on two other occasions since.
With earnings of $341,303 since joining Lalman, Mosienko, bred by Anthony Grey, has become the highest-earning trainee for her conditioner since he started his first runner in 1994. Lalman, a native of Guyana, grew up around racehorses and moved to the United States in the 1980s. He started out exercising horses for trainer Gary Sciacca before a short jockey career in which he rode in 119 starts.
Lalman said that Mosienko is very special to him and his daughter.
“She’s become part of the family,” said Lalman. “Being around her, she acts like family. Yesterday, when I was in the paddock and gave a leg up to Flavien, I walked away and she turned her head and looked at me like, ‘Where are you going?’ I won my first race as a jockey at Aqueduct, so it’s a full circle moment to win here with her.”
Lalman prefers to keep his operation small to give his horses the most attention in all aspects of care and training, and said Mosienko has brought enough attention for him to potentially expand in the near future.
“She opens some opportunity for me and I’m having some calls about training other horses because of her,” Lalman said. “I do like to keep it small though so I can be there with them and do almost everything with them – see that everything is going right, what they like and dislike, and what I can do to make them better. I believe in taking care of them and that they’ll reward you for that.”
For now, Lalman can look forward to a serious chance at his first career stakes win with the $150,000 Iroquois for state-bred fillies and mares 3-years-old and up on October 30 a strong possibility for Mosienko’s next outing.
“That’s probably next,” said Lalman. “We’ll see how she’s doing. I’m so proud of her. She’s really come along and she’s making us all happy.”
NYRA Press Office
Photo: Mosienko wins her fourth race in a row (NYRA/Coglianese)
For information on Past The Wire’s annual Breeders’ Cup Seminar, the very best in the game CLICK HERE