01/03/2015 2:59PM

Ekati's Phaeton parlays good luck into narrow victory in Old Hat

Barbara D. Livingston
Ekati's Phaeton wins the Old Hat Stakes by a half-length Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Ekati’s Phaeton parlayed her inherent speed, a touch of gameness, and the misfortune of the odds-on favorite Fashion Alert into a well-deserved half-length victory over R Sassy Lass in Saturday’s Grade 3 Old Hat at Gulfstream Park.

Fashion Alert, the only graded stakes winner in the field, broke a step slow from the rail, wound up rushing between horses to join the leaders down the backstretch, checked back midway on the turn and again when bumped turning into the stretch, and was not a factor thereafter as the 2-5 choice in the six-furlong Old Hat.

Meanwhile, Ekati’s Phaeton broke alertly to contest the early pace with Concealedwithakiss while kept several paths off the rail by jockey Luis Saez. She continued on willingly when engaged first by Fashion Alert, then R Sassy Lass, before proving best in the final sixteenth of a mile. Fashion Alert finished 6 1/4 lengths farther back in third. Temper Mint Patty, the 7-2 second choice in the field of eight 3-year-old fillies, broke slowest of all and never was a threat.

Ekati’s Phaeton, a daughter of Tale of Ekati, is owned by Phaedrus Flights LLC and trained by Bill Kaplan. She paid $17.20.

“Luis let the favorite come inside of us, and I was a little upset at the time,” said Kaplan. “But I think we might have intimidated that horse out of there, so maybe it was a good factor. This filly’s got a tremendous amount of talent, and you haven’t seen her real speed yet. It’s fantastic for this owner and filly to get a graded stakes win. She’s a big, stout filly. She’s got the mind. She’s got the talent. I think she’s going to be special.”