09/27/2014 8:51PM

Alexis Tangier wins stakes debut in Unzip Me

Shigeki Kikkawa
Alexis Tangier won her first career stakes Saturday in the Unzip Me at Santa Anita Park.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Alexis Tangier won the first stakes of her career in Saturday’s $78,700 Unzip Me Stakes at Santa Anita, an afternoon of drama for owners Ran-Jan Racing and trainer Richard Mandella.

Alexis Tangier is a 3-year-old filly who made her first start in a stakes in the Unzip Me. She is a half-sister to Moulin de Mougin, who appeared to escape injury when she slipped and fell in the Grade 1 Rodeo Drive Stakes for fillies and mares earlier in the afternoon. Moulin de Mougin rose to her feet and ran off after the fall. She eventually was caught by an out-rider.

“This is an up-and-down game,” Mandella said, watching Alexis Tangier return to the winner’s circle.

Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Alexis Tangier ($14.20) closed from fifth in a field of nine to win by a neck over the 6-1 Gender Agenda. Stars Above Me, a stakes winner at Saratoga in the summer, led to the final furlong and held third.

Kool Kat was fourth, followed by On the Backstreets, Concave, Meinertzhageni, Wonderfully, and Cal Gal in the field of nine 3-year-old fillies. On the Backstreets was the 9-5 favorite.

Alexis Tangier was timed in 1:12.50. She has won 3 of 6 starts and earned $140,280.

“She’s a good filly,” Mandella said.

Mandella said from the winner’s circle he had yet to go to the barn to check on Moulin de Mougin but had been in touch with stable staff.

“They said she looks good,” he said.