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Executiveprivilege romps in Chandelier

  • Executiveprivilege is still unbeaten (Benoit Photos)

The undefeated filly continued to impress Saturday as Executiveprivilege pulled away from the field in the Grade 1, $250,000 Chandelier at Santa Anita. The Kentucky-bred daughter of First Samurai overcame a slight bobble at the start to add another victory to her resume.

Trained by Bob Baffert, Executiveprivilege sped between horses going straight to the rail and posted fractions of :23 4/5, :48 2/5 and 1:13 2/5. The two-year-old set a pressured pace, but started to pull away on the second turn, leaving her competition behind in her wire-to-wire win. She was able to cover the 1 1/16 miles over the fast main track in 1:44 4/5.

"She's just a really good filly. We just got to keep her healthy. That's the whole deal," winning trainer Bob Baffert said.

Asked if he expected her to be in front, Baffert said, "If she breaks well, going long, I said don't give her a lot to do. She's fast. She ran like she was (had been) working. She's very special. We've just got to keep her healthy. You need a lot of horse and a little luck (to win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies at Santa Anita on November 2). You need all that, but she's special. You could tell the way she sprinted for home she was in control so it worked out right."

With Rafael Bejarano aboard, Executiveprivilege opened up in the stretch and was under a long hold late winning easily by 6 1/4 lengths. Coming across the line for second was Scarlett Strike, and it was eight lengths farther back to Miss Empire in third. Majestic Minister, Salamera, Switch to the Lead, Wittgenstein and Butterfly Soul rounded out the order of finish. Beholder, the second choice on the morning line, was scratched as was Contessa's Moment and Renee's Queen.

"She impressed me today. When I saw a lot of scratches in the race, especially the speed, I had no choice but to send her," Bejarano said. "She brought me to the lead easy and I was concerned a little bit, but after the first turn I knew I had so much horse. She was so relaxed. I think after this race she'll be ready for the Breeders' Cup. She's going to be tough."

Sent off as the 2-5 favorite, Executiveprivilege is now five-for-five in her short career. She returned $2.60, $2.20 and $2.10 to her backers.

Executiveprivilege captures the first domestic race in the new point system on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks, claiming 10 points from this race.

Executiveprivilege opened her career with a 4 1/2-length maiden romp at Hollywood on June 28 and added the Landaluce to her resume on July 14 by an easy 3 1/4 lengths. The margins got tighter over the Del Mar Polytrack, with a workmanlike 1 1/4-length decision in the Grade 3 Sorrento and a nose victory in the Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante. She has increased her earnings to $540,000.

Bred by Betz/D.J. Stable/Kidder/J. Betz/Robenalt, Executiveprivilege first sold for $23,000 as a Keeneland September yearling, but commanded $650,000 as a two-year-old in training at OBS in April. She is out of the Grade 2-placed Unaccounted For mare Refugee, making her a half-sister to stakes-placed Profit.

Executiveprivilege's third dam is Hall of Famer Davona Dale, who would go on to produce 1989 Belmont Stakes third Le Voyageur, stakes-placed winners Macau and Davona Gold, and the dam of Grade 2 victor Just a Cat. Davona Dale's stakes-winning half-sister Aly's Adita would herself foal 2006 Grade 1 Stephen Foster Handicap hero Seek Gold.

This family also includes Grade/Group 1 stars Agincourt, Flying Snowdrop and Sparkling Gem, as well as 1984 Preakness-winning sire Gate Dancer. Tracing the maternal line further back, one finds Siena Way, a full sister to 1948 Triple Crown winner and all-time great Citation.

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