10/07/2007 12:00AM

Panty Raid overtakes Lady Joanne in Spinster

EmailLEXINGTON, Ky. - Panty Raid got a terrific ride from Garrett Gomez while showing her familiar grit and wearing down another 3-year-old, Lady Joanne, to post a half-length victory Sunday in the 52nd running of the Grade 1 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes at Keeneland.

Saving ground for much of the 1 1/8-mile Polytrack journey, Panty Raid split horses in the final turn when surfacing as the main threat to Lady Joanne, who had led since soon after the start under Calvin Borel. Down the stretch, racing down the middle of the track, Panty Raid wrested the lead from Lady Joanne and maintained that short advantage when finishing in 1:51.30.

Teammate was the only horse to pose a late threat to the top pair, but she could not sustain her rally when finishing another half-length behind Lady Joanne. Then came Sugar Shake, Asi Siempre, Altesse, Rolling Sea, Naissance Royale, High Heels, Promenade Girl, and Solo Survivor. High Heels was the only other 3-year-old in a field of 11 fillies and mares.

Panty Raid, owned by the Glencrest Farm of the Greathouse family of Lexington, is trained by Todd Pletcher. She returned $8.20 as second choice.

"She was all there," said Gomez. "My main concern was around the first turn, just getting her off the bridle a little bit and she traveled really well for me."

Pletcher said he is not sure whether Panty Raid will run in any of the Oct. 26-27 Breeders' Cup championships. "The filly will tell us if she wants to come back in 20 days," he said. "The other question is what surface to run on because she would fit in either the Filly and Mare Turf or the Distaff."

Like her Carl Nafzger-trained stablemate, Street Sense, Lady Joanne finished second on Polytrack in her final prep for the Breeders' Cup, which will come in the Distaff. Street Sense was second in the Sept. 29 Kentucky Cup Classic. "We're very, very happy with her effort," said Nafzger assistant Ian Wilkes.

Panty Raid, a Kentucky-bred by Include, earned $310,000 from a total purse of $540,000 with her fifth win from eight starts. She had finished fifth as a lukewarm favorite in her last start, the Alabama, a Grade 1 race won by Lady Joanne. Her career bankroll now stands at $1,020,275.

Gio Ponti draws off in Bourbon

Earlier Sunday, Gio Ponti ($7.20) surged through an inside opening leaving the furlong pole and drew off to win the $150,000 Bourbon Stakes for 2-year-olds on the turf. Nownownow, the 7-5 favorite in a field of seven, rallied to finish 1 1/2 lengths behind the winner and another three-quarters of a length before Caberneigh.

Ridden by Ramon Dominguez and trained by Christophe Clement, Gio Ponti is a prime candidate for the inaugural Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf.