08/17/2016 5:54PM

Con Te Partiro scores in Bolton Landing Stakes

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Barbara D. Livingston
Con Te Partiro, ridden by John Velazquez, wins the Bolton Landing Stakes by 5 3/4 lengths Wednesday.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Con Te Partiro was on the list of horses trainer Wesley Ward was considering sending to England to run in a race at Royal Ascot in June.

But the 2-year-old filly developed a shin issue following her fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Juvenile at Churchill Downs in May and couldn’t make the trip.

Instead, Ward freshened her up and had her ready to roll in Wednesday’s $100,000 Bolton Landing Stakes at Saratoga, a race she won by 5 3/4 lengths over longshot Jazz Lady. It was 1 1/2 lengths farther back to Heartspoke in third.

The Bolton Landing, run at 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf, was marred by a spill at the top of the stretch when Lull, the 6-5 favorite, clipped heels with Heartspoke, ridden by E.T. Baird, stumbled and unseated jockey Manny Franco. Neither Franco nor Lull was injured.  The stewards did not hold Baird at fault for the incident.

At the point of the spill, Big City Dreamin, a horse formerly trained by Ward but turned over to Chad Brown, appeared to be cruising alone on the lead in the stretch under Irad Ortiz Jr.

John Velazquez, the rider of Con Te Partiro was able to avoid the incident at the top of the stretch by keeping his filly inside, though he was planning to go outside.

“I was easing to come out of there – she wanted to get out of there – at the same time, I wanted to hold her in as long as I could to make the turn,” Velazquez said. “When I saw that horse clip heels, I went back to the inside.”

Straightening away in the stretch, Velazquez swung Con Te Partiro five wide and into the clear.

Once clear, Con Te Partiro closed with a rush, overtaking the pace-setting Big City Dreamin at the sixteenth pole and running away to the clear victory.

Con Te Partiro, a daughter of Scat Daddy owned by Hat Creek Racing, covered the 5 1/2 furlongs over “good” turf in 1:03.95 and returned $20.80 to win.

Ward watched the race on a mobile device at Miami International Airport, where he was about to board a flight to France to run Lady Aurelia in the Group 1 Prix Morny at Deauville on Sunday.

Though Con Te Partiro had made her first two starts on dirt, Ward said, “She’s always been a grass filly. She was one we had pointed to go to Ascot. Unfortunately, after her race at Churchill, she came up with a little bit of a shin that knocked us out. What a way to get on a plane.”