12/31/2008 12:00AM

Royale Michele makes it three in a row


Royale Michele changed tactics to capture her third straight race since joining trainer Matthew Kintz's barn at Mountaineer Racetrack by upsetting Tuesday night's $75,000 New Year's Eve Stakes.

Ridden for the first time by Deshawn Parker, the 3-year-old filly Royale Michele ($22.60) was rated in fifth through a half-mile in 45.62 seconds. In her two previous starts, Royal Michele had led wire to wire.

Royale Michele saved ground along the rail into the stretch, put her head in front at midstretch, and drew clear by three lengths over 2-1 favorite A Rose for You while completing six furlongs on a track rated good in 1:10.77. It was another three lengths back to 3-1 second choice Afleet Angel.

Royale Michele, owned by Sam Pollock, began her career with trainer Todd Pletcher and went 1 for 4 while racing on Polytrack and turf. She's now 3 for 3 on dirt.