Secret Spice Upsets Marley’s Freedom in Beholder Mile

March 31, 2019

Secret Spice and Geovanni Franco easily held off a late charge from heavily favored Marley’s Freedom to take the Grade 1, $400,000 Beholder Mile at Santa Anita on Saturday.
Selcourt and Tyler Baze were intent on the early lead and the duo went unchallenged through a 1/4 mile of 24.26 while Paradise Woods and Secret Spice settled behind the leader and Marley’s Freedom tracked in fourth. Just A Smidge with Assael Espinoza aboard made a bold and beautiful move on the backstretch and rallied up on the outside of Selcourt to get on even terms, but Selcourt maintained the lead through a 1/2 mile in 48.04., and put that rival away for good on the turn. As they straightened for home Selcourt shortened strides and Franco angled Secret Spice out a few paths and she took over and skirted away to an effortless, 2-1/4 length score. Marley’s Freedom and Drayden Van Dyke launched a late rally in the middle of the racetrack but they were no match for the winner and settled for second as the 1/2 favorite.

Paradise Woods ran third, Selcourt tired to fourth and Mopotism checked in fifth.
It was a powerful performance by the Discreet Cat filly, and trainer Richard Baltas was pleased. “I know that she ran a really big race,” he said. “She put it all together. It was our day today.”
Secret Spice completed the mile in 1:30.39 and this was the 4-year-old’s first graded stakes victory. She improves her record to 3-2-2 from nine starts.
Beholder Mile Stakes Results:
Secret Spice  $24.40 6.00 4.20
Marley’s Freedom      2.20 2.10
Paradise Woods                5.20
$1 Exacta $26.00
.50-cent Tri $82.85
.10-cent Super $53.34
$1 Superhighfive $1,352.60

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