Stonetastic dominates G2 Prioress for grieving Breen
By Sean Morris | 08/30/2014 06:22 PM ET
While the outcome was never in doubt, trainer Kelly Breen scored an emotional victory in the Grade 2, $300,000 Prioress on Saturday at Saratoga Race Course with his talented filly Stonetastic.
"This is a week since my father passed away, and he's here with me," said an emotional Breen in the winner's circle. "It means a lot; it's been a tough couple of weeks."
Stonetastic ran off the screen in the Prioress under jockey Paco Lopez, demolishing her fellow 3-year-old fillies by 8 ½ lengths after leading the field through sharp fractions of 22.27 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 44.75 for the half. The win was her second victory by open lengths in two starts since returning from an extended layoff in mid-July.
"I think we are [looking toward the Breeders' Cup] today," said Terri Burch, racing manager for Stonetastic's owner, Stoneway Farm. "We shelved her for a little while in January and brought her home to grow up. This is her second race back for us. But, that's what we're looking for. That's why we were here today, to challenge everyone and see. So we're excited.
"She was running fine [before her layoff earlier this year] but she was very immature. We sent her home to grow up. She raced really hard for us in the fall, but she didn't grow. And then we put her back in training, she had a giant growth spurt, so we had to wait and go slow on her and wait for her to come around."
Stonetastic completed the six furlongs in 1:08.88 and returned $13 on a $2 win wager. Her Prioress score increased her bankroll to $299,121.
"She's fast," said Breen. "Paco [Lopez] came back and said she did it easy. I'm happy for all the connections; she ran great. Paco said he didn't whip her. I don't know what else to say, she went in 1:08 and four, and did it the right way."
The 2-1 favorite, Miss Behaviour, took a run at Stonetastic entering the stretch but was no match. The daughter of Jump Start, who was second in the Grade 1 Test earlier in the meet, held second over Southern Honey by a neck, while it was another length back to Tea Time in fourth.
"My filly ran great," said Phil Schoenthal, trainer of Miss Behaviour. "There was no beating the winner. When entries came out [Stonetastic] was the one I was most afraid of. There's no shame in defeat, and it's fun to come up here and give it a shot."
Who's in Town, Sweet Whiskey, Princess Violet and Thirteen Arrows completed the order of finish.