ESPN.com - Horse Racing - Weigelia wins duel in Carry Back

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Saturday, July 10
Weigelia wins duel in Carry Back




MIAMI -- Weigelia and Classy Migration struck a blow for the locals, engaging in a furious stretch battle before Weigelia prevailed by a half-length in the $300,000 Carry Back Stakes, one of six stakes on Saturday's Summit of Speed program at Calder.

Weigelia and Classy Migration hooked up in a similar stretch battle, with the same results, when they finished one-two in the Western Borders Stakes here on May 9. The competition was much tougher in the Grade 3 Carry Back, but the outcome was the same.

Classy Migration dueled Twice as Bad, a former Calder-based 3-year-old, for the opening half-mile of the Carry Back, as Weigelia and jockey Aurelio Toribio Jr. rated just off the leaders. The two locals hooked up at the head of the stretch, with Weigelia, on the outside, gaining a narrow advantage that he maintained throughout the final furlong.

Bwana Charlie loomed a threat into the stretch but lacked a final rally. Ice Wynnd Fire, the 3-2 favorite in a field of 11 3-year-olds, was never a factor and finished fifth.

Weigelia, a son of Safely's Mark trained by Manny Azpurua for owner Joseph Balsamo, covered six furlongs in 1:10.50 and paid $23.

"He was in top shape for this one," said Azpurua. "I don't know where he'll run next, but he's improving, and he's always fighting and very competitive."

Azalea BC: Dazzle Me gets loose
Dazzle Me surprisingly got loose on the lead in a field loaded with speed and never looked back en route to an easy 6 1/2-length victory over 6-5 favorite Reforest and five other 3-year-old fillies in the $300,000 Azalea Breeders' Cup Stakes.

Dazzle Me, a daughter of Tactical Cat owned by the Padua Stables, kept her record perfect in four starts on dirt. Her only setback came over a yielding grass course in Churchill Downs' Open Mind Stakes.

With regular rider Shane Sellers aboard, Dazzle Me outsprinted Anna Em and Reforest to the lead after running an opening quarter-mile in 21.24 seconds. She gradually forged clear after getting a half-mile in 44.39, then steadily increased the lead despite covering the final quarter in a slow 27.01 over the dry and cuppy track. The final time for six furlongs was 1:11.40.

Reforest forced the pace while racing wide, and, while no match for the winner, she outfinished Boston Express by three-quarters of a length to finish second. The others were never a factor.

Despite bringing a perfect main-track record into the Azalea for trainer Steve Asmussen, Dazzle Me was overlooked in the betting and paid a generous $19.80 to win, keying a $73.40 exacta payoff with the favorite.

Asmussen and Sellers had different opinions on how the race evolved.

"I wasn't really surprised to see her on the lead," said Asmussen. "She's a really fast filly. Throw out the turf stakes and there isn't anything not to like about her. Her next start will probably be the Test."

"I was surprised to be out front, I really was," said Sellers. "I didn't know if she had enough speed to be in front of these."

Turf Sprint: 'Doveflies' beats boys
Whenthedoveflies, the course-record holder and only filly in the field, remained unbeaten at five furlongs on the grass after posting a game head victory over Swift Replica in the $100,000 Calder Turf Sprint Handicap.

Ridden for the first time by Pat Day and sent postward as the 8-5 favorite, Whenthedoveflies dueled head to head with Swift Replica from the outset of the Turf Sprint and was up in the final strides. Swift Replica, who raced inside the winner, appeared to hold a short advantage over Whenthedoveflies throughout much of the final furlong, only to drop the heartbreaking decision at the wire. Bishop Court Hill finished another three-quarters of a length back in third.

Whenthedoveflies, a 4-year-old daughter of Dove Hunt, has now won all five of her starts going five furlongs on the grass. Trained by Kirk Ziadie for the Lakacah Racing Stables, she covered the distance in 55.40 seconds and paid $5.40. Whenthedoveflies had set the course record of 54.78 seconds in her previous start.

"She's beaten all the fillies, so we tried her here," Ziadie said. "There aren't a lot of stakes opportunities for turf sprinters. It was a big test and she passed."

Rocket Man: Pembroke Hall scores
Pembroke Hall, a Canadian-based two-furlong specialist, brought his unique talent and abundant speed across the border and ran his winning streak to 10 with a head victory over Love My Mountain in the $50,000 Rocket Man Stakes. Caller One, making his first start in more than two years, finished third after being pinched between the leaders nearing the wire.

Pembroke Hall, who drifted out steadily throughout the race, covered two furlongs in 21.65 seconds under regular rider Martin Ramirez and paid $6.40. Each of the 7-year-old's previous nine victories for trainer Donald MacRae had come in quarter-mile dashes over his home track at Fort Erie.

James Chapman, the husband of co-owner Carolyn Chapman, was pleased with Caller One's performance.

"It wasn't about getting the win but about getting the race," said Chapman. "He stumbled a little leaving the gate and I was afraid he might have grabbed his quarter, but he seems to be fine."



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