Canoodling Dictates Pace And Takes Grade III, $100,000 Wilshire Stakes
CANOODLING DICTATES PACE AND TAKES GRADE III, $100,000 WILSHIRE STAKES BY 1 ¾ LENGTHS AS HERNANDEZ & PUYPE TEAM AT MILE ON TURF IN 1:34.90
ARCADIA, Calif. (May 1, 2022)–In what her trainer described as a “breakthrough performance,” Canoodling, an import this winter/spring from New Mexico, withstood serious pace pressure as she went gate to wire to win Sunday’s Grade III, $100,000 Wilshire Stakes at Santa Anita. Reunited with Juan Hernandez and conditioned by Mike Puype, Canoodling, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly by Pioneerof the Nile, got one mile on turf in 1:34.90.
Breaking sharply from her number three post position, Canoodling led a five-horse scramble around the first turn as Quiet Secretary, Eddie’s New Dream, Stella Noir and Amy C all ensured a hot early pace.
One length clear of Quiet Secretary three furlongs out, Canoodling hugged the rail and had Amy C to contend with leaving the quarter pole. Turning for home, Canoodling opened up two lengths and with just two lefthanded reminders from Hernandez, kept a late closing Eddie’s New Dream at bay late.
“This filly is very versatile, she runs from any part of the course and I’m just so grateful to have a chance with her,” said Puype, who has now saddled her in four graded stakes at the current meet, winning two of them. “This was a breakthrough race for us today. She ran huge. She had to run real fractions and keep it going and she did.
“The first time she won here in the Megahertz (Grade III, one mile turf on Jan. 29), she stole it with an easy pace. There was no easy pace today. She took heat the whole way and kicked away very impressively. I went to the paddock with confidence. I told Juan, ‘You ride her the way you see fit. If she breaks, you go, if not, do what you gotta do…Ride her like she’s the best horse in the race,’ and he did.”
Most recently fifth, beaten three lengths in the Grade II Buena Vista Stakes at one mile on turf March 5, Canoodling was the 7-2 second choice in a field of eight fillies and mares three and up and paid $9.60, $4.80 and $3.60.
“I worked her one time a couple weeks ago and she worked really nice,” said Hernandez, who got his second win on the day and his third graded stakes win in the past two days. “I told my agent that she was doing really good and that she worked good that day. I told him I wanted to ride her and yeah, we got the win today.”
Owned by B4 Farms, LLC, Canoodling, who sold for $180,000 as a Keeneland September Yearling and is out of the Harlan’s Holiday mare Miz Kella, collected her second graded stakes and fourth overall stakes victory, improving her career mark to 16-8-1-2. With the winner’s share of $60,000, she increased her earnings to $342,023.
The lone California-bred in the field, Eddie’s New Dream was third, about three lengths off the lead at the top of the lane and finished up well to hold off a late-charging England’s Rose by a half length for second money.
Off at 4-1 with Mario Gutierrez, Eddie’s New Dream paid $5.00 and $3.20.
Last heading into the far turn, England’s Rose had eight lengths to make up a furlong out and seemed to find her best stride late under Victor Espinoza, finishing three quarters of a length in front of Amy C. Off at 5-1, she paid $4.80 to show.
Fractions on the race were 23.08, 46.86, 1:10.88 and 1:22.77.
Live racing resumes with first post time for a nine-race card on Friday at 1 p.m. Admission gates will open early to accommodate Kentucky Oaks Day simulcast wagering at 7:15 a.m.