03/10/2017 6:50PM

Illuminant gets second stakes win in Wishing Well

Benoit & Associates
Illuminant and jockey Flavien Prat win the Wishing Well Stakes by 1 1/4 lengths.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Illuminant made a successful comeback following a layoff of more than nine months in Friday’s $77,790 Wishing Well Stakes for fillies and mares on the hillside turf course at Santa Anita.

The win left trainer Michael McCarthy looking toward a potential start in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley Stakes for fillies and mares at a mile on turf at Keeneland on April 15 for Illuminant, who won the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes here last May.

Ridden by leading rider Flavien Prat, Illuminant ($4.20) stalked a torrid pace of 21.09 seconds set by Paquita Coqueta and Kera Kera through the opening quarter-mile before taking the lead when the field crossed from the hillside turf course onto the main turf oval.

Illuminant led by two lengths with a furlong to go and won by 1 1/4 lengths over Prize Exhibit, the 7-2 second choice.

“She did it easy,” Prat said. “We had a good race. She galloped out pretty good. She looks better and trains better.”

Illuminant ran about 6 1/2 furlongs on turf in 1:12.27. Prize Exhibit finished a half-length in front of Miss Double d’Oro, who was followed by Hillhouse High, Paquita Coqueta, Kera Kera, and Cadet Roni.

Illuminant was taken out of training last summer because of minor ailments. In November, she was listed as sold for $900,000 at the Fasig-Tipton November sale in Kentucky to SF Bloodstock. Illuminant raced for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners earlier in her career. The Eclipse partnership has retained a portion of the ownership along with Head of Plains Partners and SF Bloodstock.

“You hope you get them back as good as they were,” McCarthy said.

McCarthy said Illuminant was more patient than expected for her comeback.

“I thought she’d be a little closer,” he said. “Flavien said she was comfortable where she was at.”

A 5-year-old mare by Quality Road, Illuminant has won 5 of 12 starts and earned $413,910. The Gamely and Wishing Well are her only two stakes wins. She was third in the 2016 Jenny Wiley behind Tepin and Wekeela.