Sconsin beats Bell’s the One to the wire in a thrilling finish in the Open Mind at Churchill Downs

September 20, 2021

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Lloyd Madison Farms IV’s homebred Sconsin got the first run on Bell’s the One down the stretch in Saturday night’s 12th running of the $300,000 Open Mind (Listed) at Churchill Downs as she turned back a late run from the 4-5 favorite to prevail by a half-length in a clash of two of the top filly and mare sprinters in America.

Trained by Greg Foley and ridden by Tyler GaffalioneSconsin ran six furlongs in a stakes record 1:08.75 as the 9-5 second betting choice.

Sconsin, 3 ¼-length winner of the $150,000 Winning Colors (Grade III) at Churchill Downs in May, was rated in fourth, as expected, behind pacesetter Mundaye Call who dictated the terms from the rail through early fractions of :21.64 and :44.77. Ain’t No Elmers and Jungle Juice (IRE) tracked just behind the leader. Bell’s the One, who improved her impressive record to nine wins from 19 starts and $1.1 million earnings after a victory in the $200,000 Honorable Miss (GII) at Saratoga this summer, trailed the compact field of five fillies and mares.

Sconsin made the first move and had a two-length advantage on Bell’s the One leaving the turn. Sconsin drew even with the leading trio with a furlong to run and out-finished Bell’s the One to the wire.

“A lot of credit has to go to Greg and his team for getting this filly ready to go tonight,” Gaffalione said. “She was very sharp, and we got into a good position early. There was some pace in front early. She dug in well late to hold off (Bell’s the One). It was a really strong effort tonight.”

Sconsin, who banked the $185,000 first prize, improved her record to five wins, four seconds and a third in 15 starts. Her career earnings total $783,362.

The career earnings for the 4-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Include now total $783,362.

“Going into the race we saw there was a little bit of speed on paper,” Foley said. “She got the pace setup tonight unlike the Ballerina at Saratoga. Neil (Pessin)’s filly (Bell’s the One) beat us in the spring, and we got the better hand tonight. She deserves it. Tyler gave her a great ride. He knew Bell’s the One was coming and Sconsin just had her measured tonight. It was our turn.”

Sconsin paid $5.60, $2.40 and $2.10. Bell’s the One, ridden by Corey Lanerie, returned $2.40 and $2.10. Mundaye Call finished another four lengths back in third under Florent Geroux and paid $2.40 to show. It was another half-length back to Jungle Juice (IRE) and 6 ¾ lengths back to Ain’t No Elmers.

“It was a great race tonight with two solid horses,” said Neil Pessin, trainer of Bell’s the One. “Bell’s ran a great race, and we are proud of her effort.”

Open Mind Stakes Replay, Race 3 at 3:35 on video 

Saturday’s race saluted the late Eugene Klein’s Hall of Fame filly Open Mind, the D. Wayne Lukas-trained winner of the 1988 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) at Churchill Downs who returned to the Louisville track the following spring to win the Kentucky Oaks. The New Jersey-bred filly was an Eclipse Award champion at ages two and three. A winner of 12 races and $1,844,372 in 19 starts, the daughter of Deputy Minister was enshrined in Racing’s Hall of Fame in 2011.

Foley eyes Breeders’ Cup for Open Mind victor 

Trainer Greg Foley’s Barn 11 was buzzing with excitement Sunday morning following Sconsin’s hard-fought victory over Bell’s the One. Now, Foley and his team are eyeing a trip to Del Mar and the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (Grade I).

“She’s just a classy filly,” Foley said. “Neil (Pessin)’s mare (Bell’s the One) is a really solid horse and they really battled last night. You get a little worried when the field is short about what the pace will be. They went quick last night and that helped us. In her two starts this year against Gamine they went almost two seconds slower for the opening quarter-mile.”

Sconsin improved her overall record to 15-5-4-1—$783,362. The 4-year-old Include filly is out of the former Foley-trained mare Sconnie

“The guys with Lloyd Madison (Farms IV) have a really solid broodmare band going and it’s really exiting for this filly to now have three stakes wins. I’m thrilled for those guys.”

The winner’s circle was filled with about 30 members of Foley’s friends and family. However, one family member was missing and that was his son and assistant trainer Travis, who was out of town on his bachelor party ahead of his Oct. 2 wedding.

“We would’ve loved to be there, but we definitely had a good celebration after she won,” Travis Foley said.

Edited Press Release

Photo: Sconsin and Bell’s the One duel it out down the stretch in the Open Mind Saturday. (Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

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