10/20/2012 5:19PM

Keeneland: Gypsy Robin too fast for Raven Run rivals

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Keeneland | Coady Photography
Gypsy Robin and jockey John Velazquez leave the Raven Run field strung out behind them.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Gypsy Robin must have a thing for the Polytrack surface at Keeneland. The filly absolutely ran her competition off their feet Saturday when dominating the 14th running of the Grade 2, $250,000 Raven Run, running her career record here to 3 for 3.

Second in her most recent outing in the Grade 1 Test Stakes eight weeks ago, Gypsy Robin broke on top in the seven-furlong race and was never seriously threatened, drawing off with quick and powerful strides to win by four lengths under John Velazquez. Trained by Wesley Ward, she returned $4.40 as the favorite in a field of 13 3-year-old fillies after finishing in 1:21.79.

Sacristy finished second at 12-1, while Drama Drama (22-1) was up late to be third and Assateague (24-1) was fourth. Via Villaggio was the big disappointment in the field when finishing 12th as the 7-2 second choice.

Gypsy Robin opened her career by easily winning a Keeneland maiden race in April 2011, and after three more races, she returned here last spring from a seven-month layoff to win the Grade 2 Beaumont Stakes by three lengths.

On a cloudy, chilly afternoon, and with 25,287 in attendance, Gypsy Robin initially shook off longshot Monono, and after Sacristy loomed the main threat from the far outside leaving the turn, she easily drew off.

“I said, as long as she’s going easy, I’m going to leave it alone,” said Velazquez. “When I got to the quarter pole, she switched [leads] and went on. It was really a nice explosion from the quarter-pole home.”

“She loves the track,” said Gatewood Bell, who owns the filly in partnership with Ward, Bret Jones, and New England Patriots star receiver Wes Welker. “She ran awesome. Wesley really had her primed today.”

Gypsy Robin, a Kentucky-bred-by Daaher, now has won 5 of 9 overall starts. In the Aug. 25 Test at Saratoga, she was second by two lengths to Contested.

The $2 exacta (11-14) paid $40.20; the $1 trifecta (11-14-8) returned $293.40; and the dime superfecta (11-14-8-2) was worth $692.97.

Craig Barron More than 1 year ago
i seen this race and JR just had to sit on her back. She was by far the best on this day.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Quite a filly! First fraction I believe was 22.17. Amazing peformance. Who knows where she is headed? The females have certainly shown their stuff the last three years. Well that race capped a great day of racing from Keeneland. The best closers in the field were the 14 and 8. They did their job but had no hope of catching Gypsy Robin. The payoffs you listed were great considering how to form the race played out. R Davis