by Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile
Winning her elimination, Broadway Donna returned to the track hours later to claim victory in the 51st edition of the $312,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity on Sunday (Oct. 9) at The Red Mile. Earlier on the card, Broadway Donna trotted a 1:51.1 to win the first of two eliminations for the Filly Futurity, paying $7.00 to win.
Sitting fourth through a :27 quarter set by Southwind Hope, Broadway Donna moved first-over from fourth to brush to control before the half-mile. She was in front through a :55 half-mile and began kicking away from Southwind Hope, who was chasing in second and Spicedbourbongirl in third. Trotting to three-quarters in 1:23.1, Broadway Donna remained in front by open lengths through the stretch, coasting home while Earn Your Wings came down the center of the track for second and Flowers N Songs for third. Spicedbourbongirl finished fourth and Dream Child was fifth.
“She wasn’t at the top of her game last week,” her trainer Jim Campbell said. “Part of it was probably my fault; I should’ve pulled her hind shoes last week, but she warmed up so good that I thought she was okay with them on. Dave (Miller) thought the track kind of stuck to her and wore her out more than anything, so I’ll take the blame for last week. I was just watching David and he was just letting her trot along. I was just hoping that she would bounce back and be like her old self, and if she was, the fractions wouldn’t bother me. David didn’t even look like he was asking her; she looked real strong all the way down the lane. I was paying more attention to David than I was the fractions.”
Owned by Vanersol In., Dancing In Thehall is trained by Ake Svanstedt and by Cantab Hall out of the Donerail mare Doin’ The Town. The filly pulled off a 47-1 upset in the second elimination, winning in 1:53.
Womans Will led the field through a :28 first quarter before losing the lead to Side Bet Hanover. Celebrity Eventsy pulled first-over from fifth with Wildflower on her back at the half-mile, timed in :55.4. Dancing In Thehall was trotting at the rail in sixth around the far turn while Side Bet Hanover progressed to three-quarters in front of Celebrity Eventsy, who stalled first-over in 1:24.4.
Side Bet Hanover drifted off the rail through the stretch, leaving room for Dancing In Thehall and driver Yannick Gingras to sweep up the rail while Wildflower, Gin And Lindy, and Double Exposure tried to advance towards the center of the track. Side Bet Hanover tried to fight off Dancing In Thehall to her inside heading to the line, but Dancing In Thehall edged by. Double Exposure finished third, Gin And Lindy fourth, and Gracie Hanover fifth.
“(We) just tried to stay close to the rail and hope that something opened up,” Gingras said. “She felt really strong around the last turn, so I figured at that point I made the final, but all the way through the stretch she kept picking them off one by one.”
Dancing In Thehall paid $96.80 to win.
In the second heat, Broadway Donna grabbed command before the half-mile and strolled to a 1:51.2 victory. Sent off the 3-5 favorite, Broadway Donna edged off the cones passing the quarter in :27.3 to take the top from Spicedbourbongirl. She trotted to the half-mile in :55.3 as Side Bet Hanover initiated a first-over bid into the turn, being tracked by Flowers N Songs. Side Bet Hanover matched strides with Spicedbourbongirl heading to three-quarters about two lengths off of Broadway Donna. Timed in 1:23.4, Broadway Donna kicked away in the stretch under wraps while Spicedbourbongirl chased for second and Flowers N Songs kicked off cover for third.
“It was pretty much an identical trip (to the first heat),” Miller said. “She was just the same in the second heat as she was in the first.”
“(We) couldn’t be more proud of her today,” Campbell said. “She showed what she can really do, and for her to go two heats like she did today was just impressive. She’s an amazing filly. She started off on a good note; she was really good in her first start. And then in her second start she was sick. She bled a little bit in the Hambletonian Oaks, and we put her on Lasix, but it didn’t seem to kick in until today. She went out and did what we were hoping to see today. Mr. Segal will make the final decision on (racing her at four). I’m sure he’s leaning towards it, but as long as everything finishes up good this year, I’m sure he’d be in favor of that. They probably have a spot for her all reserved for whenever that time comes, but hopefully it’s not for a couple years.”