10/14/2011 6:20PM

Keeneland: Wild About Marie runs off with Franklin County

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Keeneland/Coady Photography
Wild About Marie, with Robby Albarado riding, wins the Franklin County, paying $27.80.

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Wild About Marie had a terrific trip and put in perhaps the best performance of her 16-race career Friday in the $100,000 Franklin County Stakes at Keeneland, a potent combination that gave the 4-year-old filly a 12-1 upset amid a terrific field of filly-mare turf sprinters.

With Robby Albarado guiding her through an unobstructed journey, Wild About Marie strode clear in the final furlong to finish the 5 1/2-furlong distance in 1:03.01 over a firm course. The winner returned $27.80 as sixth choice. Supreme rallied to be second at 7-1 under Luis Garcia, two lengths behind the winner and another length before You Need Me, a 61-1 outsider. Bounding Bi was fourth.

"She been training super, but you're always kind of surprised when they win in this kind of crowd," said an elated Jeff Thornbury, who trains Wild About Marie for Dawn and Ike Thrash. "This probably was the best race she's ever run."
 
Before an ontrack crowd of 19,036 warmed by a late-arriving sun, Bounding Bi set the early pace, with longshot Old Time Religion giving closest chase. Wild About Marie, comfortable in mid-pack early, angled out turning for home, and down the stretch she quickly spurted away with surprising ease for the sixth and richest victory of a career in which she now has earned $261,985. The winner is a Florida-bred 4-year-old filly by Wildcat Heir.

Easily the disappointment of the race was the Maryland invader, Suzzona, who beat a steady fade after chasing the early pace to finish 11th as the 17-10 favorite.

The results led to big mutuels, with the $2 exacta returning $198.40, the $1 trifecta paying $2,921.50, and the 10-cent superfecta worth $2,660.48.