10/24/2009 12:00AM

April Pride rallies to Ramser victory

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ARCADIA, Calif. - April Pride, a minor stakes winner with a rambunctious attitude, became April Pride, the rambunctious graded stakes winner in Saturday's at Santa Anita.

A filly who has tested trainer Jim Cassidy's patience in the last year was up to her antics in the winner's circle, becoming fractious just after the winner's circle photo was taken when jockey Garrett Gomez jumped off.

"She's tough," Cassidy said. "She's got a mind of her own."

The Grade 3 Ramser was April Pride's second stakes win since arriving from England in October 2008. She won the minor China Doll Stakes here in March. The Ramser featured a better field than the China Doll, with five 2009 stakes winners.

Gomez had April Pride in mid-pack for the first six furlongs of the one-mile turf race, stalking pacesetters Century Park and Strawberry Tart through a decent pace of 23.25 and 46.28 seconds. April Pride was in traffic turning for home, and rallied between Point of Reference and Acting Lady to reach the front in the final sixteenth. April Pride ($17.80) won by 1 1/2 lengths over Century Park, running a mile on turf in 1:34.02.

"This is her best race since she's been here," Cassidy said.

Starlarks finished third in the field of eight, with 2-1 favorite Minute Limit fourth and Strawberry Tart fading to finish last.

The Ramser win ended a two-race losing streak for April Pride. After the China Doll, she did not start again until Del Mar, finishing eighth in the Sandy Blue Handicap on Aug. 21. She was third against older fillies and mares in an optional claimer here on Oct. 1.

Owned by Forging Oaks Farm, April Pride has won 3 of 14 starts and $182,567. She was group stakes-placed in England in August 2008 before joining Cassidy's stable.