07/20/2013 5:11PM

Saratoga: Authenticity stays home to win Shuvee

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Barbara D. Livingston
Authenticity wins the Grade 3 Shuvee by a length over Flashy American.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Trainer Todd Pletcher’s decision to wait to take on champion Royal Delta until another day paid big dividends when Authenticity registered a popular one-length decision over a game Flashy American in Saturday’s $200,000 Shuvee at Saratoga. The win was the second of three stakes victories for Pletcher on the card, along with Silsita in the My Princess Jess and Princess of Sylmar in the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks.

Pletcher entered Authenticity in both the Grade 3 Shuvee and Grade 1 Delaware Handicap, which featured an appearance from two-time Eclipse Award winner Royal Delta, but opted to stay at Saratoga and await a likely confrontation with the division leader later in the session in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign on Aug. 25.

“It’s been really hot the last few days, and we felt by shipping her to Delaware it might compromise her later in the year,” Pletcher said when asked to explain the reasoning for keeping Authenticity at home Saturday. “So we thought we’d keep her at Saratoga, we like to win here, and it sets her up well for the Personal Ensign.”

With John Velazquez back aboard, Authenticity stalked the early pace of Sea Island who was allowed to set leisurely fractions of 25.46 seconds for the quarter, 50.80 for the half, and 1:15.03 for the opening six furlongs. Authenticity went after the leader turning for home, took control in early stretch, and then withstood a late run along the rail from Flashy American. Sea Island finished a tiring third.

[SARATOGA 2013: Complete meet coverage, exclusive DRF videos]

Both Royal Lahaina and Zenyatta’s baby sister, Eblouissante, were eased to the wire. Eblouissante delayed the start briefly when getting a little anxious in the gate, stumbled momentarily at the break, and was never a serious factor.

Authenticity, a 6-year-old daughter of Quiet American who returned to the races earlier this year following an 18-month hiatus, is owned by Padua Stables. She covered 1 1/8 miles in 1:52.33 over a fast track and paid $3.

“She got into a good stalking position, a good comfortable rhythm, and I thought it was a good effort from her,” Pletcher said. “She’s a total professional. She’s easy to train, easy to ride, the main thing was we wanted her to be in a comfortable rhythm.”

Trainer Ken McPeek said he was proud of Flashy American in defeat.

“She ran super,” McPeek said. “If you look at her past performances, the last five times I ran her on the dirt she won. The only reason she didn’t win the others was because she was either at the wrong distance or on the wrong surface, and that would be my fault. She’s a good filly, and we’re proud of her.”