Piedi Bianchi's late surge wins blanket finish in Correction
by Brian Bohl
OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Piedi Bianchi ran down multiple challengers in deep stretch, including 7-5 favorite Kept True in the final jumps, and edged Slimey by a head to capture Saturday's $100,000 Correction at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Owned by Jay Oringer, Jack Bick and Madaket Stables, Piedi Bianchi was covered in fifth position as Sea Sparkle, being closely tracked by Kept True, led the seven-horse field of older fillies and mares through an opening quarter-mile in 22.94 seconds and the half in 47.64 on the fast main track.
Jockey Jorge Vargas, Jr. tipped Piedi Bianchi wide out of the turn as Kept True overtook the pacesetter from the outside. Staying in the five-path, Piedi Bianchi picked off three rivals one-by-one surging for home, overtaking Nisha, Sea Sparkle and Kept True and held off Slimey in a head bob, completing six furlongs in a final time of 1:13.51 to win the 80th running of the Correction.
Piedi Bianchi, off at 3-1, won her second straight race and first stakes since the Frances Slocum in November 2018 at Indiana Grand Race Course. The 5-year-old Overanalyze mare finished second or third in three Grade 1 starts as a juvenile and has now won both her starts for trainer Carlos Martin, who took over training duties for Piedi Bianchi's 2020 campaign.
"I thought she was in good shape pretty much the whole way," Martin said. "I got a little concerned when she kicked, and then they kicked on and it looked like she was grinding it out. But the way it was setting up with those four horses in front of her, I thought she was going to blow them away.
"Around the turn, when I saw those horses setting up in front of her, I thought she was going to go on and take them," he added. "But some of those horses can really run."
Piedi Bianchi returned $8.10 on a $2 win wager. She increased her career bankroll to $453,100 and is 4-3-3 in 14 career starts.
"It was a perfect trip. I've been working this filly the past two weeks and she's been doing amazing," said Vargas, who won his fifth stakes of the Aqueduct winter meet. "I was just hoping she wouldn't bounce off her last race. She ran pretty hard last time. I was really hoping for an effort like that.
"She gave me that last kick when they came to her on the outside. She just dug in and put her head in front."
Martin said Piedi Bianchi could stretch out to one mile in the Grade 2, $250,000 Ruffian on May 3 at Belmont Park.
Slimey, trained by David Cannizzo, bested Kept True by a head for second. Kept True, the favorite conditioned by Leah Gyarmati, rounded out the trifecta by finishing a neck in front of Bridlewood Cat.
Sea Sparkle, Nisha and I'mnotshyi'llbuy completed the order of finish.
Live racing resumes Sunday at Aqueduct with a nine-race card, highlighted by the $100,000 Damon Runyon for New York-bred 3-year-olds in Race 8 at 5:01 p.m. Eastern. First post is 1:30 p.m. Eastern.