2020 Athenia Stakes Contenders & Odds

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Edited NYRA Press Release
Updated: October 24, 2020

Feel Glorious (Reeves Thoroughbred Racing and Tango Uniform Racing) will look to bounce back from an off-the-board finish in last month's Grade 3 Noble Damsel with another graded stakes appearance on the Belmont Park turf, serving as one of two entrants for trainer Christophe Clement in the Grade 3, $100,000 Athenia Stakes going 1 1/16 miles over the inner turf course on Sunday, October 25.

The 43rd running of the Athenia for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up will feature three-time stakes-winner Feel Glorious looking to recapture the form she showed earlier in her 4-year-old campaign, including a half-length victory in the Perfect Sting going the Athenia's distance on August 14 at Saratoga Race Course. Cut back to one mile in the Grade 3 Nobel Damsel on September 26 at Belmont.

2020 Athenia Stakes Field & Odds

Race 9 at Belmont Park on Sunday, October 25 - Post 4:55 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Mitchell Road 9-2 Luis Saez
124 Lbs
William Mott
2 Call Me Love (GB) 7-2 Joel Rosario
122 Lbs
Christophe Clement
3 Feel Glorious (GB) 8-1 Junior Alvarado
124 Lbs
Christophe Clement
4 Story Time 30-1 Dylan Davis
122 Lbs
J. Sweezey
5 Altea (FR) 6-1 Irad Ortiz, Jr.
122 Lbs
Chad Brown
6 Sweet Bye and Bye 3-1 Jose Lezcano
122 Lbs
Anthony Dutrow
7 She's Got You (GB) 4-1 Javier Castellano
124 Lbs
Chad Brown
8 Tapit Today 6-1 Jose Ortiz
122 Lbs
Chad Brown

Feel Glorious ran seventh after going five-wide in the upper stretch and failing to rally, marking just the first time in her last seven starts the English-bred daughter of Bated Breath did not hit the board.

Feel Glorious, who won the Memories of Silver and Winter Memories at Aqueduct Racetrack in 2019, had registered three consecutive Beyer Speed Figures in excess of 90 before the Noble Damsel, including a 93 for the Perfect Sting, a 92 for a third-place finish in the Grade 3 Matchmaker on July 18 at Monmouth Park and a 91 for a third in the Grade 2 New York going 1 1/4 miles on the Belmont turf on June 27.

"It was a little disappointing in the Noble Damsel, but she's been training forwardly since," Clement said. "She didn't finish the last race the way we expected her to finish. After checking her out, we found out that she was a bit sore in the feet, so we worked on it and she's been training well. I think we took care of it."

Junior Alvarado, aboard for her previous two starts, will have the return call from post 3.

Her stablemate and fellow English bred, R Unicorn Stable's Call Me Love, has a pair of runner-up efforts in graded stakes in her four North American starts. Since arriving from Europe for her 4-year-old campaign, Call Me Love has trained forwardly and made a splash when second to Rushing Fall in the Grade 3 Beaugay on June 30 at Belmont [Rushing Fall went on to win the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley and Grade 1 Diana in her next two starts].

Making her Saratoga debut, Call Me Love finished second by a neck behind Starship Jubilee in the Grade 2 Ballston Spa on July 25 and was fifth in the Grade 1 Diana last out on August 23.

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"I gave her a bit of a break after the race in Saratoga," Clement said. "Her best has been great and her at her worst has been disappointing. But she looks well, is sound and is training forwardly. Her last two works have been good, so we're ready to go."

Joel Rosario, who rode Call Me Love in the Ballston Spa and Diana, will renew the engagement, breaking from post 2.

Mitchell Road, who ran second by a neck to Regal Glory in the Grade 3 Ladies Turf in September over a soft Kentucky Downs track, is again entered at a Belmont track. Last week, the 5-year-old English Channel mare was scratched from the $80,000 Floral Park but will look to return after garnering a 94 Beyer Speed Figure last month.

Owned by Mrs. J.V. Shields, Jr. and E. J. M. McFadden, Mitchell Road won the 2019 Grade 3 Gallorette at Pimlico Race Course as a 4-year-old and also has compiled a stakes win in the current campaign in the Ellis Park Turf on July 5 going 1 1/16 miles.

Trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, Mitchell Road will have Luis Saez in the irons from post 1.

Joseph Imbesi's Sweet Bye and Bye returned to graded stakes company for the first time in nearly a year in her previous start, finishing third in the Grade 3 Nobel Damsel on September 26 going one mile on the Belmont turf.

Tony Dutrow conditioned Sweet Bye and Bye when she started her career in 2017. Imbesi moved the Pennsylvania bred to Parx-based trainer Steve Klesaris but returned her to Dutrow this year in the hopes of running on the stakes circuit in New York. The Sky Mesa mare ran third in the Caress going 5 ½ furlongs on the Spa turf on August 1 before being stretched out, where she bested optional claimers on August 26 at one mile before staying at the distance in the Noble Damsel.

"We're very happy with her," Dutrow said. "She was such a little thing as a 2-year-old. We liked her then, but now, to see her as a 5-year-old, she's turned into a big, gorgeous mare. She's run a few big races on the Belmont turf, so we're looking forward to seeing her again."

Jose Lezcano was tabbed to ride, departing from post 6.

Trainer Chad Brown will send out three entrants including the English-bred She's Got You, who won the Violet on September 26 at Monmouth. The daughter of Kingman arrived from her native country to start her 4-year-old year this year, where she debuted with a third-place effort against optional claimers on July 5 at Belmont before earning a 90 Beyer for her North American stakes bow.

Owned by John and Tanya Gunther, She's Got You is 4-1-3 in nine career starts including her appearances in England. Hall of Famer Javier Castellano will ride from post 7.

The French-bred Altea ran second by a neck to her stablemate in the Violet and will make her first graded stakes appearance since her fourth-place effort in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley. Now 5-years-old, Altea has been second in three of her last six starts, encompassing the Grade 3 Endeavour in February at Tampa Bay Downs and the Tom Benson Memorial in March at Fair Grounds. Irad Ortiz, Jr. will ride from post 5.

William Lawrence and Bradley Thoroughbreds' Tapit Today is 0-1-2 in four career stakes starts and will look to break through in the Athenia. The 5-year-old Tapit mare was third, 1 ½ lengths back to Mitchell Road, in the Ladies Turf last out and also ran third in the Grade 3 Suwannee River in February at Gulfstream. Jose Ortiz, breaking from post 8, will pick up the mount.

Rounding out the field is Whisper Hill Farm's Story Time, fourth in the Violet, who is looking for her first win since August 2019 for trainer Kent Sweezey [post 4, Dylan Davis].

The Athenia is slated as Race 9 on Sunday's 10-race program, which offers a first post of 12:40 p.m. Eastern.

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