Frank Fletcher's ROCKET TWENTYONE (Indian Charlie) rallied past pacesetter Essence of Bubbles (Essence of Dubai) in deep stretch and recorded a half-length victory in Saturday's $100,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie S. (G3), posting a 16-1 upset in the one-mile event for two-year-old fillies.
A 6 1/2-length debut winner at Prairie Meadows on August 12, the dark bay filly went dirt-to-Polytrack successfully for trainer W.T. Howard, stopping the teletimer in 1:39 with jockey Eusebio Razo Jr.
Rocket Twentyone broke well but Essence of Bubbles sprinted forward to her inside and showed the way in the one-turn event, completing an opening quarter-mile in :23 2/5 with a one-length advantage. Rocket Twentyone stalked the leader in second through a half-mile in :47 3/5 and continued to trail in upper stretch, 1 1/2 lengths back of the front runner after six furlongs in 1:12 2/5.
Essence of Bubbles surged to a three-length advantage in midstretch, but Rocket Twentyone closed determinedly on the far outside in the final furlong to get up late.
The winner paid $34.80, $12.80 and $5.60 as the seventh choice among nine rivals, and upped her career earnings to $77,928.
Essence of Dubai held second by a half-length at 5-1. Ann of the Dance (English Channel), who was last at the midway point, came flying from the back of the pack but ran out of real estate and settled for third as the 3-1 second choice. Venetian Sonata (Bernardini) rounded $5,387.80 superfecta at 6-1. Always Here Too (Include), the 5-2 favorite, Dream Pegasus (Fusaichi Pegasus), Yorona (Storm Surge), Struck It Lucky (Smart Strike) and Coyote Breeze (Shore Breeze) came next under the wire.
Bred in Ontario by Josham Farms & Yvonne Schwabe Thoroughbreds, Rocket Twentyone sold for $95,000 as Keeneland September yearling before commanding $300,000 from her owner at the OBS March sale earlier this year. She is out of the stakes-placed Symphonic Lady (Blare of Trumpets), who is also the dam of the Grade 3-placed Bear's Conductor (Congaree).
The 14-year-old broodmare is a half-sister to the stakes-placed Lady's Legacy (Matchlite), whose daughter Shameful (Flying Chevron), a multiple Grade 3-placed stakes winner, produced dual champion Indian Blessing (Indian Charlie). Rocket Twentyone is closely related to the multiple Grade 1-winning earner of more than $2.5 million. This is also the female family of Japanese Horse of the Year Zenno Roby Roy (Sunday Silence), a daughter of Grade 1 winner Roamin Rachel (Mining); Grade 1 queen Cat's Cradle (Flying Paster); and stakes winner and Grade 2-placed Little Matth Man (Matty G.)