05/17/2014 2:06PM

Ageless rallies on rail to win The Very One Stakes

Tom Keyser
Coming off a victory at Keeneland last month, Ageless rallied up the rail Saturday to win The Very One Stakes on the Preakness undercard at Pimlico.

BALTIMORE – Ageless found a clear path to rally up the rail to live up to her 2-1 favoritism when outrunning 13 other filly-mare turf sprinters Saturday in the $100,000 The Very One Stakes on the Preakness undercard at Pimlico.

Favored off a victory four weeks beforehand at Keeneland, Ageless, ridden by Luis Garcia, returned $6.60 after finishing the five-furlong distance in 58.91 seconds over a course rated good.

“It was good to save ground, but it wasn’t my idea to sit on the rail,” said Garcia. “It’s just how the race developed. I wasn’t sure the rail would open. We went for it the last eighth of a mile.”

Perfect Measure, a 28-1 shot, emerged from a bunched pack to get second, three-quarters of a length behind the winner and another three-quarters of a length before Quality Lass. Jewel of a Cat was just another head back in fourth. In fact, the top nine finishers were separated by less than 2 1/2 lengths.

Ageless, trained by Arnaud Delacour, is owned by the Lael Stables of Barbaro fame. It was seven years ago on Preakness Day that Barbaro suffered the injury that ultimately led to his demise.

A Kentucky-bred 5-year-old mare by Successful Appeal, Ageless now has won seven of 13 career starts and four of her last five. She was coming off a win in the April 19 Giant’s Causeway Stakes over the Keeneland turf. She was based at Tampa Bay Downs in the winter and now is training at Fair Hill.

“I was not sure how she’d handle the ground,” said Delacour. “We had a lot of rain yesterday. Obviously, she didn’t mind. She saved ground and came with a big kick at the end. She likes this distance, but I think she’s good anywhere from five to 6 1/2 [furlongs].”

Joyous Music, the lone also-eligible, was the only scratch, leaving a field of 14 fillies and mares.

The $2 exacta (7-10) paid $135, the $1 trifecta (7-10-6) returned $821, and the 10-cent superfecta (7-10-6-11) was worth $562.01.