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DAWN AFTER DAWN UPSETS MODERN LOOK IN MOSCOW BURNING BEFORE CROWD OF 6,302
ARCADIA, Calif. (March 13, 2009) – Bet down to 7-10 favoritism for her United States debut, classy European import Modern Look was unable to withstand the closing surge of 5-1 third choice Dawn After Dawn Friday in Santa Anita’s $70,150 Moscow Burning Stakes for fillies and mares at one mile on turf before an on-track crowd of 6,302.
Demonstrating the back class that carried her to victory in last year’s Grade II La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita, Dawn After Dawn overpowered the heavy favorite in the final sixteenth while drawing clear to win by three-quarters of a length in 1:34.33.
After breaking on top, Dawn After Dawn was settled into a stalking position along the rail by jockey Joel Rosario. But, with the 5-year-old mare in danger of getting bottled up on the inside, Rosario swung her outside to a clear path nearing the sixteenth pole, and she responded with an illuminating turn of foot.
Modern Look, ridden by Garrett Gomez for trainer Bobby Frankel and Juddmonte Farms, held on for the place, 1 ¼ lengths ahead of Ransom Captive and jockey Corey Nakatani in the field of seven.
The winner paid $12.40, $4.60 and $3.80. The prices on Modern Look were $2.80 and $2.60 while Ransom Captive returned $5.60 to show.
After winning the La Canada as the even money favorite, Ike and Dawn Thrash’s Dawn After Dawn ran second to talented Nashoba’s Key in the Grade I Santa Margarita Stakes, but she proceeded to go off form for trainer John Sadler.
She was given a five-month freshening after running eighth and last in Del Mar’s Grade II Clement L. Hirsch Handicap last August. After a disappointing return in January’s Sunshine Millions Distaff, Dawn After Dawn was returned to turf following ten outings over synthetic or dirt surfaces. She took the Wishing Well Handicap over Santa Anita’s downhill turf course on Jan. 31, at 12-1 odds before stretching out in the Moscow Burning.
The winning purse of $41,600 boosted her career earnings to $516,273 while raising her record to 6-3-3 in 22 lifetime starts. It was her fourth victory in six starts on grass that include a second, which might suggest her immediate future, at least, will be on turf.
A winner of group stakes the last two years in France, Modern Look had no excuses after tracking early leader Bahama Mama and taking the lead entering the stretch. “If she’s fit enough, she’ll win,” Frankel had said before the race. “We’ll see. I’m hoping her class will carry her through.” The 4-year-old British-bred filly had not raced since June in England.
Friday’s on-track handle was $1,469,308, and the total handle exceeded $7.9 million.
Pioneerof the Nile, the West Coast’s leading Triple Crown candidate, will be in action in Saturday’s Grade II San Felipe Stakes for 3-year-olds when Santa Anita presents a ten-race card that includes the Grade I Santa Margarita Handicap for fillies and mares. First post is at 12:30 p.m.