Scotish Star Shines With Decisive Victory in $125K Floral Park

October 14, 2023

Scotish Scar runs them down in the Floral Park (Chelsea Durand)

By Mary Eddy – NYRA Press Office

OZONE PARK, N.Y.— LNJ Foxwoods and La Providencia’s Scotish Star drew clear to a decisive victory as the 1-4 favorite in Saturday’s off-the-turf running of the $125,000 Floral Park, a six-furlong sprint for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up that was originally carded for the outer turf course, at Belmont at the Big A.

Trained by Hall of Famer Todd Pletcher, Scotish Star scored her first North American stakes victory, adding to a win in the Group 1 Polla de Potrancas in her native Argentina. The 6-year-old daughter of Key Deputy has hit the board in four other stakes events, three of them graded, and earned her first trip to the winner’s circle since an optional claimer last August at Saratoga Race Course.

Piloted by Kendrick Carmouche, Scotish Star emerged a step slow from the inside post as Shoshanah broke sharpest in the field of four and held a narrow advantage to the inside of Salvaje to mark an opening quarter-mile in 22.09 seconds over the sloppy and sealed footing while the maiden Risk Free trailed in last.

Carmouche kept Scotish Star in the three path down the backstretch as positions remained unchanged through a half-mile in 45.76 before Salvaje crept closer to challenge for the lead in the turn and Scotish Star began to pick it up from third.

Entering the stretch, Shoshanah clung to a precarious lead as Risk Free put in a strong run between her and Salvaje with Scotish Star bearing down from the far outside. Risk Free inched clear of the two frontrunners near the sixteenth pole, but could not outrun Scotish Star, who took over in late stretch and drew off to a 1 1/2-length victory.

Risk Free finished a clear second by 8 1/4 lengths over Salvaje with Shoshanah completing the order of finish. Bubble Rock, Itsakeyper, Poppy Flower, Can’t Buy Love, Bank On Anna and Royal Poppy were scratched.

Carmouche, who teamed up with Pletcher to win the off-the-turf Jockey Club Derby Invitational last weekend with Lost Ark, said Scotish Star was simply the best horse today.

“I had some horse underneath me but you can see on her paper she don’t like to win as much and you could feel that once she got there, she started to idle a little,” said Carmouche. “She was the best horse. She just had to gallop home.”

Scotish Star returns from the Floral Park a winner (Susie Raisher)

The Floral Park was the middle win of a natural hat trick on the card for Carmouche, who won Race 3 with the Rob Atras-trained Saint Selby and Race 5 with the Cherie DeVaux-conditioned Purloin.

Byron Hughes, Pletcher’s Belmont-based assistant, said his confidence in Scotish Star grew when the race was moved to the main track.

“It was going to be a short field with the race coming off the turf, and against this group we thought she would be competitive,” said Hughes. “She showed that she was today.

“She didn’t break the quickest out of there. It looked like the speed went on,” Hughes added. “Kendrick did a good job of getting her in the clear, go three-wide, give a mild kick and she was able to hang out for the win.”

Bred in Argentina by co-owner La Providencia, Scotish Star banked $68,750 in victory and boosted her total purse earnings to $314,330 through a record of 14-4-6-1. She returned $2.60 for a $2 win ticket.

The Edward DeLauro-trained runner-up Risk Free still searches for her first win after making her 19th lifetime outing, but has now banked over $250,000 in earnings with 15 on-the-board finishes. Jose Gomez, aboard the daughter of American Freedom for the first time in the afternoon, praised her determination.

“A stakes-placed maiden – she tries. She showed up,” Gomez said. “Hopefully one day she breaks her maiden. I tried to get her out of there, but she’s a little quirky. When she didn’t break that fast, I just tried to get her to settle. I knew there’d be enough pace for her to run at. When the time came, she went between horses and finished up well. She was just second best.”

Live racing resumes Sunday at Belmont at the Big A with a nine-race card. First post is 12:35 p.m. Eastern.

An amazing article. Well done @jonathanstettin #ruffian…

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