05/20/2016 1:45PM

Disco Chick all the way in Skipat Stakes

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Barbara D. Livingston
Disco Chick and jockey Trevor McCarthy win the Skipat Stakes by eight lengths Friday.

BALTIMORE – Disco Chick began to put it together for trainer Mario Serey Jr. last fall, and this year at age 5, she has taken her game to a new level. On Friday at Pimlico, she made short work of her six rivals in the $100,000 Skipat Stakes, pulling away to win by eight lengths.

Serey said Disco Chick's improvement was a combination of her maturing physically and his realizing that she needed to be on the lead.

In the Skipat, Disco Chick went to the front from the inside post under jockey Trevor McCarthy, with Flattering Bea, Raging Smoke, and 1-5 favorite Fantastic Style tracking her from the outside. Disco Chick opened a clear lead on the far turn of the six-furlong race and then left Fantastic Style well behind in the stretch.

Fantastic Style, trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Javier Castellano, stalked the early pace four wide, was sent after Disco Chick on the turn, but lacked the needed response and then was caught for second by a length in deep stretch by the second-longest shot in the race, 67-1 Dallas Cowgirl. It was 4 1/2 lengths farther back to Sweet On Smokey in fourth.

"The owner gave her to me when she was 2," Serey said. "I saw the potential, but when she was young, she didn't know what she was doing. She has been growing up in the body, and last year she told me that she needed to be a speed filly."

Disco Chick paid $11.20 and was timed in 1:10.33. She is now 8 for 26 with earnings of $468,800. Disco Chick set realistic fractions of 23.21 and 45.83 seconds.

McCarthy rode Disco Chick in her final start at 4 and in her first start this year. She was second in both of those stakes at Laurel Park to Lady Sabelia, arguably the top filly or mare sprinter in the Mid-Atlantic before being retired recently.

"She has run some awesome races in Maryland," McCarthy said. "All she needed was to get away from Lady Sabelia."

Disco Chick is based at Parx Racing with Serey and had a nice break over the winter when the track was closed for the installation of a new safety rail. During the recent equine herpesvirus quarantine at Parx, Disco Chick won the $100,000 My Juliet Stakes, ending runner-up Four Inch Heels's five-race winning streak.