Photo by Jerry DzierwinskiMJC
David Joseph/Maryland Jockey Club
LAUREL, Md. – Midwest-based Godolphin homebred Twice as Sweet, making her stakes debut racing for the first time outside Kentucky, collared favored pacesetter Dissolute on the far turn and powered through the stretch to a 6 ½-length triumph in the 26th edition of the Smart Halo.
Ridden by Feargal Lynch for trainer Brendan Walsh, who was in Ireland Saturday, Twice as Sweet ($9) ran six furlongs in 1:10.48 over a main track rated good to earn her second win and first since graduating in a 5 ½-furlong maiden special weight on the grass at Ellis Park in August.
Second to subsequent stakes winner Key of Life in her prior start, an Oct. 7 optional claiming allowance at Keeneland, Twice as Sweet settled along the rail in second as Dissolute led through a quarter-mile in 22.53 seconds. Lynch moved up to the outside of Dissolute midway around the turn and was in command at the top of the stretch, drawing away for an easy win.
“She’s a pretty nice filly, very straightforward. She ran into a good one last time. This filly does everything nice. She’s turf or dirt,” Lynch said.
“I don’t think she had a troubled trip. I think she just got forced a little bit wide last time,” he added. “Today it was ideal. She just gave me a lead into the straight and when I turned her loose she just went about her business.”
Miss Georgie held off 24-1 long shot Gormley’s Gabriela by a neck for second with Diamondsifyoudo fourth, followed by Dissolute, Shiny Slam and Bound by Destiny, who entered the race with a 4-0 record including back-to-back stakes. Maryland Million Lassie winner Chickieness was scratched.
Smart Halo, by top Maryland sire Smarten, won the first race on the inaugural Maryland Million Day program in 1986, beating In the Curl by a neck in the Lassie to cap a perfect 3-0 campaign. Bred in Canada by E.P. Taylor and owned by Sam-Son Farm, Smart Halo was trained by Canadian Hall of Famer Jim Day.