03/12/2016 6:52PM

Terra Promessa cruises to 6 1/2-length victory in Honeybee


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Trainer Steve Asmussen won the Grade 3, $200,000 Honeybee Stakes for the sixth time in his career on Saturday, when Terra Promessa rolled to a 6 1/2-length win over stablemate Nickname in the mud at Oaklawn Park. Terra Promessa was the fourth of five winners for jockey Ricardo Santana, Jr. on Saturday's card.

The Honeybee, a mile and a sixteenth race for 3-year-old fillies, offered its first four finishers eligibility points for the Kentucky Oaks on a sliding scale of 50-20-10-5. Cosmic Evolution was third, while the fourth-place finisher was Dorodansa.

Terra Promessa ($8) stalked the pace in fourth as Cosmic Evolution set fractions of 23.33 seconds for the opening quarter and 47.06 for the half-mile, with Nickname tracking in second. Terra Promessa began to advance four wide into the final turn, overtook the leaders after six furlongs in 1:12.97, and went on to cover the distance on a sealed track in 1:47.14.

"She's a really nice filly," said Santana, aboard for Stonestreet Stables. "She always tries when she runs."

Terra Promessa won her third straight race in a streak that started with a maiden special weight score in November at Churchill. She proceeded to take a first-level allowance by nine lengths in her 3-year-old debut in February at Oaklawn, setting her up for the start in the Honeybee.

Asmussen said he will discuss plans for Terra Promessa with Stonestreet, with a consideration the Grade 3, $400,000 Fantasy on April 9 at Oaklawn.

Asmussen’s other winners in the Honeybee have been: Euphrosyne, in 2014; Xtreme Bid (2001); Fiesty Countess (2000); Dreams Gallore (1999); and Valid Bonnet (1997).

Attendance on Saturday was an estimated 16,000.