Updated on 09/17/2011 11:30PM

Wend unbeatable over Gulf's turf

Ryan Mcalinden / EQUI-PHOTO
Wend, and jockey Edgar Prado, race to victory in the Grade III $100,000 Honey Fox Handicap on Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Wend remained perfect at Gulfstream Park and perfect at 1 1/16 miles as she recorded a one-length, front-running victory over Brunilda in Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 .

Honey Ryder, last year's E.P. Taylor winner, finished third, a neck ahead of High Court.

Making her first start since running sixth in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf last Oct. 29, Wend was pushed along by Darluna through fast fractions yet she still had enough in the tank to win. Wend, a 5-year-old daughter of Pulpit owned and bred by Claiborne Farm, covered the 1 1/16 miles over firm turf in 1:38.31, just .14 of a second off the course record. She returned $4.20 to win as the favorite.

"It was very good, I think horses run good fresh,"' said trainer Bill Mott, who won his third straight Honey Fox. "I wasn't surprised that she ran well. Firm ground is the key to her."

Wend went 5 for 6 on firm turf last year - including a victory in the Grade 2 New York Handicap - and 0 for 2 on less than firm ground. Wend is now 3 for 3 at Gulfstream and 4 for 4 at 1 1/16 miles.

Saturday, under Edgar Prado, Wend outdueled Darluna to the lead through an opening quarter in 23.29 seconds. Darluna stayed right off Wend's flank through a half-mile in 46.53, three quarters in 1:09.45, and she still had enough to hold Brunilda at bay.

"I don't think [Prado] was asking her to do it," Mott said. "She did have a horse right on her hip. If she had a length or two of daylight she might have slowed it down."

Mott said Wend would be a possibility for the Jenny Wiley at Keeneland on April 14 or could just be trained up to the Churchill Downs Distaff Turf Mile on Kentucky Derby Day.

Dynamite Lass takes The Very One

Dynamite Lass, shuffled back to last entering the far turn, re-rallied under Rafael Bejarano to outfinish 6-5 favorite Olaya and win the Grade 3, $100,000 by three-quarters of a length.

Olaya finished second, a nose ahead of Noble Stella.

It was the fourth win from 13 career starts and the first stakes victory for Dynamite Lass, a 4-year-old daughter of Dynaformer owned and bred by Alfred Corrado.

Dynamite Lass was inside and stalking under Bejarano when she got stuck behind a tiring Mona Rose entering the far turn the second time. After checking, Bejarano was able to rally Dynamite Lass back into contention along the rail. He found room to get her to the outside in the stretch and was able to get past Olaya, who got off to a slow start under Edgar Prado.

Dynamite Lass covered the 1 7/16 miles in 2:18.81, eclipsing the course record of 2:23.91 set by Einstein in last Sunday's Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup Handicap. Dynamite Lass, trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, returned $14.60 to win.

"She finished second [four] times, and I'm glad she finally got a graded stakes win,'' McLaughlin said. "She's a very good filly.''

Stakes lie ahead for Pletcher pair

Trainer Todd Pletcher showcased two more of his talented 3-year-olds as Exclusive Quality and Sunriver won allowance races early on Saturday's card.

Exclusive Quality, a son of Elusive Quality purchased by Aaron and Marie Jones for $850,000 last year, won a seven-furlong race by a half-length over even-money favorite Songster. He established a track record for seven furlongs by covering the distance in 1:21.11.

Pletcher said Exclusive Quality is not a Kentucky Derby horse and would most likely make his next start in the Bay Shore Stakes at Aqueduct on April 8.

One race later, Sunriver, a full-brother to champion Ashado, won a 1 1/8-mile allowance race by a half-length over High Blues. Sunriver, bred and owned by the Jones', ran 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.30.

Pletcher said he would consider the Florida Derby or the Illinois Derby for Sunriver.