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Secret Compass shines in Chandelier

  • Secret Compass (Benoit Photos)

Westrock Stables LLC's Secret Compass upset the field by a head in Saturday's Grade 1, $250,500 Chandelier Stakes as the 10-1 second longest shot on the board and paid her supporters $23.40 to win in a Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" race for the Juvenile Fillies.

The Bob Baffert charge stalked the leaders on the inside as eventual fourth-place finisher Harlington's Rose posted an opening quarter in :22 4/5. Secret Compass remained within striking distance as Baffert's other filly and eventual fifth-place finisher, Awesome Baby, took over to cover a half-mile in :46 1/5.

Del Mar Debutante winner She's a Tiger surged to lead around the far turn, traveling six furlongs in 1:10 1/5 under Gary Stevens. Turning for home it was She's a Tiger with Secret Compass looming as those two left the rest of the field behind. Secret Compass slowly started to wear down the leader in the stretch on the outside and took over just before the wire in a dramatic finish.

The two-year-old filly crossed the wire in 1:44 4/5 for the 1 1/16-mile test over the fast main track with Rosie Napravnik up. Secret Compass banked $150,000 for her first stakes score to boost her bankroll to $216,120 from a 4-2-0-0 line. She also earned 10 points for an entry into the Kentucky Oaks as the Chandelier is the second race in the Road to the Kentucky Oaks series.

"I was worried when I got to Gary's horse that he would sprint away," Napravnik said. "He did for a little bit but my filly just kept running and she was all out sticking her nose out for the win. We'll have to see if I'll be riding her in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. I don't know where Bob is going with her, so we'll see."

She's a Tiger held on for second, while it was just three-quarters of a length back in third to 6-5 favorite Fascinating, who was closing fast but ran out of track. Harlington's Rose, Awesome Baby, Belle of the Fleet and Antiquity rounded out the order of finish. Colonel Joan was scratched from the race.

"She felt great," Stevens said in regards to She's a Tiger. "She showed me two things today; she went to the gate quieter than she's ever been, which is a big positive in stretching out, and she proved she can rate as well. She kicked clear coming into the stretch but I was pretty empty (by then), but she still put up a fight. When she switched to her right lead she was really laboring and I knew they were coming.

"I thought we might finish fourth. I wound up getting beat a head, or whatever it was, and she even started to come back the last sixteenth. I'm very proud of her and looking forward to the Breeders' Cup."

Secret Compass finished fourth in her racing debut on July 6 over Hollywood Park's Cushion Track and would break her maiden later that month over Del Mar's Polytrack. The dark bay was exiting a fourth-place finish in her stakes debut in the Del Mar Debutante on August 31.

Bred in Kentucky by Liberation Farm and Brandywine Farm, Secret Compass is out of the Maria's Mon mare Maria's Pride, who is a half-sister to stakes scorer Smoke Mountain. Her third dam is Addy's Venture, who produced stakes winners Addy's Appeal and Winning Move, and the female family is also responsible for this season's Preakness third-placer Mylute.

The daughter of Discreet Cat sold as a weanling for $8,500 at the Keeneland November sale, sold again as a yearling for $90,000 at Keeneland September and then sold as a two-year-old in training for $425,000 at the OBS March sale. 

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