Brattle House, following an impressive debut win, will face stakes company for the first time when headlining a nine-horse field of New York-bred sophomore fillies in the sixth running of the $100,000 Maddie May Stakes going a one-turn mile at Aqueduct Racetrack on Saturday, February 20..
Owned by Larry Best's OXO Equine, Brattle House dominated on November 22 over a fast Aqueduct main track. The Malibu Moon bay filly broke sharply from her inside post and dictated moderate terms under a snug hold from jockey Joel Rosario before kicking clear to a 5 ¼-length win.
||Shanes Pretty Lady
||Jorge Vargas, Jr.
||Luis Rodriguez Castro
Brattle House was acquired for $775,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Yearling Sale in August 2019 and is out of the Street Sense mare Savvy Sassy. She was bred by Oak Bluff Stable in partnership with her trainer Christophe Clement.
"She's doing well. I gave her one start at the end of last year and then gave her a bit of a break," Clement said. "She will be much better in the spring and around April, but I do think she's been working well. She still has a winter coat, but she's done well. Her works have been good."
Brattle House arrives at the Maddie May off a five furlong work in 1:03.60 at Payson Park Training Center in Florida.
"Going one mile first out is not easy to do, but Clement had her ready and she won," said OXO Equine racing manager Don Chatlos. "She's had the winter down in Payson and we're hoping to see her best on Saturday. One of the reasons we gave Clement the filly is because he trained the broodmare, so he knows the family really well. You trust Christophe in those situations. He has Hall of Fame credentials. He could have waited for an allowance, but he sees something he likes in going after this stakes."
Jockey Dylan Davis will pilot Brattle House from post 8.
Trained by John Kimmel, Nedlaw Stable's Secret Love, will look to go 2-for-2 in stakes after defeating stakes-winner Laobanonaprayer on a muddy and sealed track in the Franklin Square on January 16.
Following a 6 ¼-length debut triumph on September 24 at Belmont Park, the daughter of second crop sire Not This Time was second as the beaten favorite to Rossa Veloce in a six-furlong allowance optional claiming race before her Franklin Square triumph.
In her last-out victory, Secret Love turned the tables on Rossa Veloce establishing a close second position off the flank of her familiar foe early on before establishing command in mid-stretch to cross the finish line a 1 ½-length winner.
Kimmel expressed no concern with the increased ground in stretching her out to one mile.
"I would think it would be within her scope to be able to do that," Kimmel said. "She's not rank and she doesn't pull hard. I think if she gets a more comfortable scenario in the early stages, she should be able to carry herself a mile."
Kimmel also sends out Frost Me in pursuit of her first stakes triumph after defeating New York-bred winners going the one-turn mile at Aqueduct. Owned by Mandy Pope's Whisper Hill Farm, the daughter of second crop sire Frosted won on debut before finishing a distant second to Laobanonaprayer in the Maid of the Mist on October 24.
Both Kimmel-trained fillies worked in tandem on February 13 over the Belmont training track completing their respective half-mile breezes in 50.85 seconds.
"We didn't ask them for any kind of speed in the breeze, but they did gallop out extremely well all the way around to the three-quarters pole," Kimmel said.
Breaking from post 7, Secret Love will have returning rider Pablo Morales in the irons while Frost Me will be piloted by Kendrick Carmouche from post 2.
Trainer Todd Pletcher also will be represented by a pair of fillies with stakes-winner Vacay and Shanes Pretty Lady.
Vacay ,owned by Repole Stable and Eclipse Thoroughbreds Partners, won her stakes debut in the Key Cents on November 15. The daughter of Not This Time displayed outside stalking tactics, when sitting fourth from the five path before coming under urging in upper stretch and powered to a 5 ½-length triumph.
Vacay arrives at the Maddie May off a third-place finish in the Franklin Square, where she received some kickback when in behind horses along the rail but showed a late kick to finish 1 ¾ lengths behind Secret Love.
Jockey Manny Franco will be aboard Vacay from post 1.
Dutchess Views Farm's homebred Shanes Pretty Lady seeks more black type after finishing a distant third three starts back in the NYSSS Fifth Avenue on December 6. The dark bay daughter of Bellamy Road's best finish against winners took place going the Maddie May distance when second to Frost Me in a January 8 optional claiming event.
Jockey Jorge Vargas, Jr. will pilot Shanes Pretty Lady from post 5.
Peter Brant's royally-bred Teetotaler will try to replicate a decisive last-out maiden victory for trainer Chad Brown.
Out of multiple Grade 1-winner Artemis Agrotera, the Uncle Mo filly was a 6 3/4-length winner of a state-bred maiden event on January 30 travelling a one-turn mile at Aqueduct.
Bred by Chester Broman and Mary R. Broman, Teetotaler was purchased by Brant for a half-million dollars from the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Yearling Sale in 2019.
Breaking from post 4, Teetotaler will be ridden by Trevor McCarthy.
Completing the field are Make Mischief [post 3, Eric Cancel], Irish Constitution [post 6, Mike Luzzi], and Cara's Dreamer [post 9, Luis Rodriguez Castro].
The Maddie May is slated as Race 8 on Saturday's nine-race program. First post is 1:20 p.m. Eastern.
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