Stonewall Star after her victory in the Key Cents (NYRA/Coglianese)
NYRA Press Office
OZONE PARK, N.Y.— Barry Schwartz’s New York homebred Stonewall Star will look to regain winning form for trainer Horacio De Paz in the $100,000 Franklin Square, a 6 1/2-furlong sprint for state-bred sophomore fillies, on January 22 at Aqueduct Racetrack.
The bay daughter of Flatter was last seen finishing a pacesetting third in the seven-furlong Gin Talking against open company on December 30 at Laurel Park where she was defeated 1 3/4 lengths by Malibu Moonshine. It was her first start beyond six-furlongs in her fifth lifetime outing after scoring a stakes victory two starts back in the state-bred Key Cents on November 20 at the Big A.
“She’s been in pretty good form after each race,” said De Paz. “I think she’ll like the cutback and going back against state-bred company. She’s already won at Aqueduct, so she likes the track.”
Stonewall Star, who has never finished off-the-board, was an impressive winner at second asking in a key state-bred maiden special weight in September at Belmont at the Big A, defeating nine rivals that included next-out winners Disruption and Three Unions, along with Silver Skillet, who finished third in the Maid of the Mist in her next start.
Stonewall Star followed with a gutsy third-place finish against state-bred male rivals in the New York Breeders’ Futurity in October at Finger Lakes Racetrack, finishing one length behind the victorious Acoustic Ave and close runner-up Andiamo a Firenze.
“That was a really nice, big, strong effort against the boys,” said De Paz. “I think she’s a talented filly and she’ll continue to develop as she gets older. She’s maintained very good form and she’ll breeze this weekend. She’s doing good.”
De Paz will also look to start Aveen Campion’s Flight to Shanghai in the seven-furlong $100,000 Interborough on January 21 at the Big A off a prominent fourth-place effort in the one-mile Grade 3 Go for Wand on December 3 where she faced nine rivals.
The 5-year-old daughter of Shanghai Bobby made her first start for her connections in the Go for Wand after being haltered for $40,000 out of a game optional claiming effort in October at Laurel where she crossed the finish line sixth but was elevated to fifth, defeated 3 1/2 lengths after tracking in fourth throughout. The bay mare has made 12 of her last 13 starts at distances of one mile or greater, but De Paz said a cutback to sprinting may help her earn her first trip to the winner’s circle since September 2021.
“I think the cutback will be good and it will be a smaller field,” said De Paz. “Originally, we thought the Go for Wand was going to be a small field and I think everybody had the same idea. It turned out everyone was in the race.”
Flight to Shanghai has worked twice over the Belmont training track since her Go for Wand effort, most recently covering a half-mile in 51.28 seconds on January 7.
“It was an easy breeze by herself and I didn’t want to ask her too much. She’s been very honest, forward and consistent,” said De Paz. “Her breezes have been good – just light maintenance breezes. She’s a smaller mare, but she’s maintaining fitness really well.”
Friday’s card at Aqueduct will see the debut of De Paz trainee Pinstripepizzo in Race 6, a six-furlong state-bred maiden special weight for sophomore fillies. Owned by Club Sixty Five Racing, the bay daughter of City of Light sold for $200,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Preferred New York-bred Yearling Sale. She is out of the Unbridled’s Song mare Spicy Temper – a half-sister to multiple stakes-winner Rebranded – and is from the immediate family of dual-surface multiple graded stakes-winner Mshawish.
Pinstripepizzo, who was bred by Repole Stable, has worked extensively over Belmont’s dirt training track leading up to her debut, her latest effort a half-mile breeze in 50.63 on January 7.
“We bought her before the City of Lights started running and we thought she might be a little better on the turf, but she’s been training good,” said De Paz. “I’m hoping she debuts well to get a good starting race that moves her forward. I think she might want to go longer, but at this point, it’s good to get her started.”
Kendrick Carmouche has been tasked with the ride from the outermost post 9 at morning-line odds of 6-1.