Pauseforthecause brings a three-race win streak into the $100,000 La Verdad Stakes, a seven-furlong tilt for New York-bred fillies 4-years-old and upward at Aqueduct Racetrack on Saturday, January 4.
Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, the homebred daughter of Giant's Causeway is undefeated since a two-month freshening that includes an optional claiming win on September 12 and the October 19 Iroquois at Belmont Park ahead of a last-out romp against open company in the Garland of Roses on December 8 at the Big A.
||Fight On Lucy
||Jorge Vargas, Jr.
"She's really on a good roll and beat open company last time," said McLaughlin. "It is seven furlongs and it might be wet - which both are not ideal - but she's a different filly now. She's won three in a row impressively. I don't think the wet will bother us and hopefully the seven furlongs doesn't, either."
A veteran of 23 starts with a record of 7-4-6 and field-best purse earnings of $518,793, the daughter of multiple stakes-winner Spritely has demonstrated particular affinity for the Aqueduct main track where she sports an 8-2-2-4 ledger.
"I think she's a really nice filly and the New York-bred part of it helps her a lot," offered McLaughlin. "We're happy she won open last time and happy to be back with New York-breds this time."
Pauseforthecause was third in a sloppy renewal of this event last year and has yet to score beyond 6 ½-furlongs, but McLaughlin said he is buoyed to have 2019 NYRA circuit-leading rider Manny Franco available for the return mount from post 2.
"Manny rode her well last time and won nicely, so we're happy to have him back on," said McLaughlin.
Kept True (Treadway Racing Stable), trained by Leah Gyarmati, arrives at the La Verdad from a convincing 1 ¼-length score in a state-bred allowance event on December 20 at the Big A. The 4-year-old Yes It's True filly, bred by Jeffrey Treadway, will make her first stakes appearance since finishing fifth in the Grade 2 Prioress at Saratoga Race Course in August.
Dylan Davis retains the mount from post 3.
Reddam Racing's Cash Offer, trained by Mark Hennig, boasts a record of 3-5-1 from 10 starts and will provide a pace presence in the compact field. The Shackleford bay, bred by Taylor Brothers Properties and To Kalon, has been first or second at first call in nine of 10 career starts. The bay daughter of stakes winner Monono will emerge from post 5 under Jose Lezcano.
Bluegrass Jamboree, trained and co-owned by Charlton Baker with breeder Sugar Maple Farm, is the field's second-leading money earner with $319,360. The 6-year-old Bluegrass Cat mare boasts a record of 2-2-1 from nine starts at the Big A and will be in search of her first career stakes win under the freshly acquired services of Eric Cancel from post 5.
Rounding out the field are Fight On Lucy (post 1, Reylu Gutierrez), Indy's Lady (post 4, Jorge Vargas, Jr.), and Aunt Babe (post 6, Julio Correa).
The La Verdad is slated as Race 8 on Saturday's nine-race card. First post is 12:30 p.m. Eastern.