HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. -- Trainer Marty Wolfson went on record prior to Sunday's Grade 3, $150,000 Orchid at Gulfstream Park as saying he couldn't wait to run Speak Easy Gal, since she looked like the lone speed in the field and figured to have her own way on the front end.
Wolfson's theory proved 100 percent correct after Speak Easy Gal led throughout before narrowly holding off a final surge from Lady Shakespeare to post a head decision in the 1 1/2-mile Orchid for fillies and mares.
Wolfson purchased Speak Easy Gal privately for Farnsworth Stable LLC following a second-place finish under first-level allowance conditions here earlier in the meet. She returned quick dividends by winning her next two starts before becoming a graded stakes winner on Sunday.
Jockey Elvis Trujillo, who returned only hours earlier after making the long journey home from Dubai, put Speak Easy Gal right on the lead as expected. Speak Easy Gal, a 4-year-old daughter of West Acre, set fractions of 24.39 seconds, 50.47, and 1:16.35 for the opening six furlongs, with Celtic Princess in close pursuit. Mushka, the 8-5 favorite, also gained close contention earlier than expected when making a quick move out of last in the run past the grandstand the first time around.
Speak Easy Gal ultimately shook off her early pursuers upon settling into the stretch and then was fully extended to withstand Lady Shakespeare's final surge from between horses. Nehantic Kat also rallied belatedly to be third, another half-length further back with Mushka a tiring fourth.
Speak Easy Gal covered the distance in 2:28.46 over a good course. She paid $14.40.
"I really liked her today because I knew she was the only speed," said Wolfson. "They did press her a little more than I expected, but she's not speed crazy, she will re-break when challenged. She reminds me a lot of Golden Pond who won this race the same way."
Golden Pond led throughout to capture the 1997 Orchid.
Wolfson said he has nothing in mind for Speak Easy Gal's next start.