Sparkle Blue navigates through horses to win the G3 Rubicon Valley View (Keeneland Photo)
LEXINGTON, Ky.— Catherine Parke and Augustin Stables’ three-year-old filly Sparkle Blue provided connections with a sparkling win when capturing the G3, $300,000 Rubicon Valley View on Friday at Keeneland.
Breaking from post position six in the mile and a sixteenth turf affair, Sparkle Blue was in no rush early, patiently guided to the rail by Eclipse Award-winning pilot Joel Rosario. While graded stakes winner Bubble Rock led the ten three-year-old fillies into the turn, Sparkle Blue tracked the pace in third, three lengths behind the leader through an opening quarter of 23.02. My Philly Twirl raced in second two lengths ahead of her and Turnerloose found herself in fourth position to her outside.
Positions of the top four remained unchanged through a half in 47.77 and six furlongs in 1:12.76 but things began to heat up down the stretch. With Bubble Rock maintaining the lead and My Philly Twirl dropping back, Sparkle Blue fired up the engines and began to pursue the leader up the rail. Past the eighth pole, she easily tipped to the outside and soon kicked clear and was victorious by a margin of two and a half lengths.
Deep-closing California Angel soared from last of ten to grab second while on the wrong lead. Turnerloose was outfinished and settled for third. Behind the top three finishers came Bubble Rock, post-time favorite Majestic Glory, Lady Puchi, Bicameral, My Philly Twirl, Sunroof, and Heavenly Hellos. Dolce Zel, Frippet, and Oakhurst were scratched. Also-eligible Diamond Wow did not draw into the race.
The final time over the turf course rated good was 1:42.42. One mile was clocked in 1:36.58.
Bet down to 9-2 from a morning line of 12-1, Sparkle Blue paid $11.02, $6.32, and $4.50 for her winning effort. California Angel, 3-1 come post time, returned $4.48 and $3.26. Turnerloose, 6-1, rewarded her backers with $3.26 to show.
Sparkle Blue’s triumph in the Valley View was her first graded stakes victory, as well as trainer Graham Motion‘s fourth win in the race. Prior to the Valley View, Sparkle Blue was second to Spirit and Glory in the Woodford Reserve Virginia Oaks at Colonial Downs. In July at Delaware Park, she scored her first stakes win in the Christiana Stakes. In total, she has won four of her seven starts and has been off the board twice, amassing total earnings of $357,075.
By Hard Spun, out of the Smart Strike mare Silk n’ Sapphire, Sparkle Blue is half to 2010 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf winner Shared Account. She is also half to G3 winner Colonial Flag and 2006 G3 Risen Star runner-up Mark of Success.
Sparkle Blue is a homebred for co-owner Catherine Parke, the founder and owner of Valkyre Stud.
By Amber Joyce, Editor
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