10/13/2014 7:31PM

Touching Promise relishes slop in Ballerina

Four Footed Fotos
Touching Promise and jockey Mario Gutierrez win the Grade 3 Ballerina Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths Monday.

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Longshot Touching Promise paid $29.10 for her win over Madeira Park in the Grade 3, $100,000 Ballerina at Hastings on Monday.

With Mario Gutierrez aboard, Touching Promise broke alertly and stalked Saturday Nite Ride through moderate fractions of 23.98 and 48.68 seconds in the 1 1/8-mile race for fillies and mares. Thriving over the sloppy conditions, she took control on the stretch turn. She took a one-length advantage into the stretch and never looked threatened, holding off Madeira Park by 1 1/2 lengths. Wando Woman rallied to finish a non-threatening third.

“I had a perfect trip,” said Gutierrez. “She was pretty sharp and fought with me a couple of times early, but she responded well when I pulled on her. She really loved the sloppy track.”

Gutierrez didn’t have as good a trip flying into Vancouver from Southern California. He arrived at Hastings just minutes before the Ballerina.

“There was a big lineup at immigration,” he said. “It all worked out just fine, though.”

The final time was 1:51.18.

Trained by Barbara Heads, Touching Promise was bred and is owned by Russell and Lois Bennett.

Ambleside Park takes Fantasy Stakes

Madeira Park’s half-sister Ambleside Park was an easy winner of the $75,000 Fantasy Stakes for 2-year-old fillies. She paid $9.70 for her 7 1/4-length romp.

With Rico Walcott aboard, she stalked the early pace set by Seedle Surprise and took complete control of the 1 1/16-mile race when Seedle Surprise broke a leg and went down on the stretch turn. Rockport Dancer rallied to finish second. Quatre Cat finished third.

“When the horse went down, I knew it was going to cause a lot of trouble behind me, so I just sat on her,” said Walcott. “She was pretty impressive.”

The final time was 1:48.11

Ambleside Park is trained by Dave Forster and was bred in Kentucky by her owners, George Gilbert and Ray Hanson.

Splendid Scat was making a big move when she hit the fallen horse and unseated jockey Richard Hamel.

Officials at Hastings reported that Hamel and Keishan Balgobin, who was aboard Seedle Surprise, were not seriously injured. They did book off the last two races, however.