Updated on 09/17/2011 7:09PM

Shadow Cast nips 50-1 shot

Lou Hodges Jr.
Shadow Cast, Robby Albarado up, wins the $60,000 Pago Hop Stakes Saturday at Fair Grounds Race Course.

NEW ORLEANS - Shadow Cast turned in a game effort Saturday at Fair Grounds to win the $60,000 for 3-year-old fillies at a mile on the turf.

Leading jockey Robby Albarado posted his third victory on the card aboard Shadow Cast, finishing a neck ahead of fast-closing Code of Ethics, a 50-1 longshot. Sister Swank, the 9-5 favorite, was another head farther back, holding on for third by a nose over Galloping Gal.

The bulky field of 14 promised some tough trips, so Albarado kept his mount clear all the way around the track, racing wide in the early stages to make sure Shadow Cast ($20.60) never had to check her stride.

Bonanza Jellybean and Victoire Bataille rushed up from the 13 and 12 posts to contest the early lead, running the first quarter in 23.99 seconds and the half in 48.28 as Humor Me Molly and Outright Buck chased them down the backstretch.

Meanwhile, Albarado kept Shadow Cast along the outside in sixth place around the first turn and continued very wide down the backstretch. Shadow Cast, trained by Neil Howard, then made a dramatic move around the far turn, circling the leaders on the outside and emerging on the front end when the field straightened out turning for home, getting three quarters in 1:13.37.

Donnie Meche sent Sister Swank between horses at the leader and chased her through the stretch, with Shadow Cast gamely digging in to the wire and holding off a furious rally down the center of the track by Code of Ethics while covering the mile in 1:37.83.

Code of Ethics, who paid $43.60 to place, completed an exacta that returned $822.80. Sister Swank completed a trifecta that paid $3,116 for $2. The $2 superfecta was worth $15,141.20.