06/08/2009 12:00AM

Pace battle clears way for Gadget Queen


AUBURN, Wash. - A suicidal pace duel set up Gadget Queen for a strong closing move and an emphatic victory Sunday in the $50,000 Washington State Legislators Stakes at Emerald Downs.

Front-runners High Resolve and Clair Annette hooked up immediately in the 6 1/2-furlong Washington State Legislators; they sprinted the first quarter-mile in 21.20 seconds and reached a half in 43.20. High Resolve - a stakes winner in California, Florida, and Arizona -- put away Clair Annette at the top of the stretch, but by then Gadget Queen had launched her bid. When an opening along the rail presented itself, jockey Ricky Frazier guided Gadget Queen through and she quickly drew off to win by three lengths in a stakes-record 1:14.60. She paid $14.40.

High Resolve, the 3-10 betting favorite under Russell Baze, finished second. Elusive Horizon and jockey Juan Gutierrez were three-quarters of a length farther back in third in the field of five.

Gadget Queen, a 5-year-old Washington-bred by Flying With Eagles, was making her first start in four months; she was a fast-closing second behind Victorina in the 1 1/16-mile Campanile Stakes at Golden Gate in her most recent start. Trainer Blaine Wright said his primary objectives for Gadget Queen are the $100,000 Emerald Distaff at nine furlongs on Aug. 16 and the $50,000 Belle Roberts at 1 1/16 miles on Sept. 13.

Gadget Queen earned $27,500 for owners John and Janene Maryanski, who purchased the horse in a private sale last November. Overall, Gadget Queen has won 6 of 20 starts and earned $151,626.