01/07/2012 5:58PM

Gulfstream: Heavenly Landing prevails in three-horse photo in Marshua's River

Bob Coglianese
Heavenly Landing (5) nips La Reine Lionne by a nose in the Grade 3 Marshua's River.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - An inch was as good as a mile for Heavenly Landing, who remained perfect on the grass when she rallied to nose out La Reined Lionel with Tapitsfly another head farther back in Saturday’s $100,000 Marshua’s River at Gulfstream Park.

Heavenly Landing made her first 10 career starts on dirt, winning once, before trainer Eddie Kenneally switched her to grass for the first time this fall at Keeneland. He was rewarded with a 2 1/2- length allowance victory. Heavenly Landing made it two in a row on turf when closing out her 2011 campaign with similar come-from-behind, 1 1/4-length, second-level allowance win at Churchill Downs five weeks later.

In the Grade 3 Marshua’s River, Heavenly Landing settled near the rear of the 12-horse field under jockey Corey Lanerie, had only one horse beat turning into the stretch, found a seam near the eighth pole, and then finished full of run to get up in the final jump. La Reine Lionne raced forwardly throughout, gained a short advantage in early stretch, dug in gamely, and just missed.  Tapitsfly was hung wide around both turns, battled for the lead in early stretch, and just came up short in the shadow of the wire.

Daveron circled extremely wide into the stretch and rallied belatedly to finish an unlucky fifth as the 9-5 favorite.

Heavenly Landing covered a1 1/16 miles in 1:41.70 over a firm course and paid $40.80.

“She ran awesome,” said Kenneally, who trains Heavenly Landing for Summerplace Farm. “She had a terrible trip. When Corey asked her to run she had all sorts of trouble but when she found a seam she really accelerated. She hadn’t achieved everything we’d hoped on dirt but she’s found a new home on turf.”