Updated on 09/16/2011 8:48AM

Irguns Angel makes it three straight in A Gleam


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Irguns Angel wore down pacesetting Secret Liaison in the final yards at Hollywood Park on Sunday to capture the $200,000 and earn her third straight victory since returning from ankle surgery.

Irguns Angel was off for eight months before returning to action on May 2. She won two straight against softer company in preparation for the A Gleam, a seven-furlong, Grade 2 race for older female sprinters.

Secret Liaison, starting from the rail, quickly took the track from race favorite Kalookan Queen, who was stalking from second. Secret Liaison set fractions of 21.74 seconds for the opening quarter and 44.04 seconds for the half-mile. Kalookan Queen tried to go with her, but Secret Liaison put her away, and kicked clear.

Irguns Angel, however, had been lurking in fourth, and after being tipped to the middle of the track by jockey Eddie Delahoussaye, she closed resolutely and got up in the final yards to win by a head. Kalookan Queen, the even-money favorite, was another two lengths back in third.

Irguns Angel was timed in 1:22.50 for seven furlongs on the fast main track. The 4-year-old daughter of Irgun has now won five times in 11 starts. She is owned by Ron and Susie Anson, and trained by Alfredo Marquez.

"She's been awesome since we did the surgery," Marquez said. "She's real calm now. She's a real pro. At 3, she was rank. It took her time to calm down. She's a mature horse now, a different horse."

"Marquez said he thought seven furlongs "is probably the best distance for her."

Kalookan Queen is now 1 for 6 at Hollywood. She is 8 for 16 everywhere else.

"She doesn't feel as comfortable here," said her jockey, Alex Solis.