Monday, September 25, 2023
HALLANDALE BEACH - Graded stakes-winners Caramel Swirl and Maryquitecontrary and R Adios Jersey, a four-time stakes winner in her native Florida, top a dozen horses on the main list for the $200,000 Princess Rooney Invitational (G3) Saturday, Oct. 7 at Gulfstream Park.
The seven-furlong Princess Rooney for fillies and mares 3 and up is a “Win and You’re In” qualifier for the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) Saturday, Nov. 4 at Santa Anita.
Godolphin homebred Caramel Swirl, trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, won the 6 ½-furlong Vagrancy (G3) May 14 at Belmont Park in just her second start in nearly nine months. The 5-year-old Union Rags mare won the Raven Run (G2) in 2021 and was second to champion Goodnight Olive in the Ballerina (G1) last summer, a race where she had her most recent start, finishing fourth behind another champion in Echo Zulu Aug. 26.
Rodney Lundock’s Florida homebred Maryquitecontrary, seventh in the Ballerina, has been right at home at Gulfstream with six wins and a second from seven career tries. The 4-year-old First Dude filly put together a five-race win streak starting last summer that included wins in the one-mile Rampart on the final day of 2022 and the seven-furlong Inside Information (G2) Jan. 28. Her streak was snapped when she ran second to Goodnight Olive in the April 8 Madison (G1) at Keeneland.
Averill Racing, ATM Racing and Jayson Werth’s R Adios Jersey, also bred in Florida, exits a front-running 6 ½-length triumph in the seven-furlong Sheer Drama Aug. 19 at Gulfstream, where she has a record of 4-2-2 from 10 starts. Fourth in the Inside Information, the 5-year-old Adios Charlie mare has also registered three state-bred stakes wins at Tampa Bay Downs, the most recent coming in the seven-furlong FTBOA City of Ocala last December.
Also among the main invitees are Beth’s Dream, winner of the one-mile Heavenly Cause April 15 at Laurel Park that is 4-for-7 lifetime at Gulfstream; Flakes, winner of Gulfstream’s 6 ½-furlong Game Face June 17; stakes winner Funny How, second in the April 7 Distaff Handicap (G2) at Aqueduct; Last Leaf, a four-time stakes winner at Gulfstream that is twice Grade 3-placed; and Chilean Group 2 winner Yuki.
Four horses are on the reserve list of invitations including Flag Woman and Into Happiness, both riding three-race win streaks, and Miss New York, winner of the July 2 Boiling Springs at Monmouth Park.
The Princess Rooney was won the past two years by Ce Ce, who used her 2021 victory as a springboard to victory in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint and the Eclipse Award as champion female sprinter.
Run at Calder Race Course from 1983 to 2013 before being relocated to Gulfstream, the Princess Rooney honors the 1984 champion older female and 1991 inductee into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame that won 17 of 21 career starts and more than $1.3 million in purses from 1982-84. Five of her wins came in Grade 1 stakes – the 1982 Frizette, 1983 Kentucky Oaks and 1984 Vanity, Spinster and Breeders’ Cup Distaff.
$200,000 Princess Rooney Invitational (G3) List
R Adios Jersey
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