01/28/2012 4:23PM

Gulfstream: It's Me Mom wires the field

Barbara D. Livingston
It's Me Mom goes wire to wire in the Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Sprint under jockey Willie Martinez.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Tampa Bay Downs shipper It’s Me Mom ran the champ and five other rivals off their feet in Saturday’s $150,000 Florida Sunshine Millions Filly and Mare Sprint, cruising to a convincing 6 3/4-length, wire-to-wire victory over a field that included recently named Eclipse Award winner Musical Romance.

It’s Me Mom wasted little time sprinting to a commanding advantage from her inside post under regular rider Willie Martinez and was never seriously threatened thereafter. A 4-year-old daughter of Put It Back, It’s Me Mom set fractions of 22.25 seconds, and 44.41 for the opening quarter and half-mile before completing six furlongs in 1:08.85. Her final time was just .73 of a second off the track record set by Big Drama one year ago.

Honey Chile, who chased It’s Me Mom from start to finish, proved no match but outlasted Indulgence by a nose for second. Musical Romance was never a factor after breaking a bit awkwardly under jockey Juan Leyva and dropping well back. She rallied mildly to finish fourth in her first start since winning the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint nearly three months earlier.

“He said she popped up in the air when the gate opened, so he just sat on her and made a late run with her,” said Musical Romance’s trainer, Bill Kaplan. “He did the right thing, because when you give up five or six lengths early you don’t want to go chasing. We’ve got a long year ahead until the next Breeders Cup.”

About a half-hour after the race Kaplan revealed that Musical Romance had grabbed a quarter in her left front and had half the shoe on that foot ripped off.

Pomeroys Pistol, the 9-5 favorite, finished a well-beaten and disappointing fifth.

It’s Me Mom, who finished a well-beaten fourth in the Grade 3 Old Hat last January in her only other local appearance, has now won 6 of her last 7 starts, including five stakes. She paid $6.80. Her final time was .64 of a second faster than Soaring Stocks covered the same distance winning the Sunshine Millions Sprint later on the card.

“She just grew up and matured and really took to dirt since we brought her here last year,” said Lynne Scace, who trains It’s Me Mom for owners Jean and Thomas Bosch. “We have nothing picked out for her at the moment. We’ll just take her back to Tampa and start looking around now.”