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Stopchargingmaria tops Demoiselle
Todd Pletcher will be seeking his third win in a row in the $400,000 Demoiselle at Aqueduct on Saturday, and has given himself an excellent shot of doing so by saddling half of the six two-year-old fillies in the 1 1/8-mile fixture.
Stopchargingmaria, who followed up a second in the Spinaway and a third in the Frizette with a 10 3/4-length demolition of her rivals in the November 3 Tempted, is the only Demoiselle entrant with stakes experience. Undoubtedly a prohibitive favorite hero, Stopchargingmaria leads a Pletcher brigade that includes last-out maiden winner Lexi Morgan and the one-start maiden Got Lucky.
The latter fell one length short in her October 27 debut to Penwith, who goes here for Darley Stable and Kiaran McLaughlin. The juvenile is a daughter of multiple Grade 1 winner Composure and a three-quarter sister to the multiple Grade 1-placed Centring, who was scheduled to run in Friday's Go for Wand Handicap at Aqueduct.
"It was only her second start, and she ran very well," McLaughlin said of the maiden victory. "It's a big step up from breaking her maiden to graded stakes, two turns. She does everything right, trains well and ran huge last time, so she'll be forwardly placed and we'll hope for the best."
Two other last-out graduates complete the Demoiselle lineup. America prevailed by 2 3/4 lengths at Belmont on October 9 for owner Bobby Flay and trainer Bill Mott, and will add Lasix for Saturday's race. Mlle. Minuit, meanwhile, takes a sharp rise in class after winning a slowly-run maiden for New York-breds last month in her third career start.