Jaywalk punches BC Juvenile Fillies ticket
Courtesy of David Grening of DRF.com
ELMONT, N.Y. – Jaywalk had never raced beyond 5 1/2 furlongs in her first three starts, but trainer John Servis didn’t think distance would be an issue when he opted to stretch the 2-year-old filly out to a mile in Sunday’s Grade 1, $500,000 Frizette Stakes at Belmont Park.
Even after rattling off some fast early fractions, Jaywalk proved Servis accurate as she kept on going and galloped to a front-running, 5 3/4-length victory in the Frizette at Belmont Park.
Brucia La Terra rallied for second, three-quarters of a length in front of her Barclay Tagg-trained stablemate Cassies Dreamer. It was another 2 1/2 lengths back to Covfefe, the 3-5 favorite. Nonna Madeline, Sue’s Fortune, and Take Me to Hardoon completed the order of finish.
Graceful Princess, the second choice on the morning line, scratched due to a temperature.
The victory was the third straight for Jaywalk after a debut loss to Nonna Madeline sprinting here in June and earned Jaywalk an automatic berth into the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies on Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs.
Jaywalk entered the Frizette off a victory in the White Clay Creek Stakes at Delaware Park. She had come from off the pace that day.
Servis told jockey Joel Rosario that Jaywalk has speed if he needed it, but did think there were others who would outfoot Jaywalk early. But Rosario said Jaywalk broke running and he wasn’t going to fight with her to get her off the pace.
“She broke out of there like that’s what she wanted to do, so I gave her head and let her be happy,” said Rosario, who was riding Jaywalk for the first time.
Jaywalk maintained a one-length lead over Nonna Madeline through a quarter in 22.63 seconds and a half-mile in 45.65. Covfefe, a dominant debut maiden winner, moved into second by the three-quarter pole.
But in upper stretch, Jaywalk turned Covfefe aside while running six furlongs in 1:09.71. She widened her advantage through the final furlong and completed the mile in 1:34.57, which was .06 seconds faster than the Champagne was run on Saturday.
Jaywalk, a daughter of Cross Traffic owned by Cash Is King Stable and Leonard Green, returned $15.20 as the 6-1 third choice.
“There were a couple of nice fillies in there that had run better numbers. You don’t know how far they’re going to go and if they can sit on a hot pace like that and keep going,” Servis said. “I thought this filly would run all day.”
Servis said he wants to see how Jaywalk comes out of the race and how fast a speed figure she gets before committing her to the Breeders’ Cup.
“It’s obviously a huge effort for her,” Servis said. “I don’t want to see huge improvement and then wheel her back in four weeks. We’ll see how it shapes up.”
Javier Castellano, Covfefe's rider, said down the backside he thought he was going to win the race by 10 lengths.
“But when I asked her turning for home she was empty,” Castellano said.
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