Notes & Quotes From the Groupie Doll Stakes: Go Google Yourself

(Go Google Yourself draws off near the wire to win the Groupie Doll Stakes at Ellis Park / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

From the Ellis Park Media Team:

Samantha Siegel’s 4-year-old Go Google Yourself and jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. stalked front-running Divine Queen before taking the lead on the turn and drawing away through the stretch of the $125,000 Groupie Doll Stakes presented by Field & Main Bank for a three-length frolic at Ellis Park. Go Google Yourself covered the mile in 1:36.43, paying $6.80 to win as the second choice in the field of six fillies and mares. Divine Queen and jockey Calvin Borel finished 6 1/2 lengths in front of odds-on favorite Moonlit Garden, the eight-length Iowa Distaff winner.

Trainer Paul McGee — Go Google Yourself (1st):

“This filly, she’s been knocking at the door to get a stakes win, and finally got it done today,” said winning trainer Paul McGee, who shipped in from Churchill Downs. “So this was great. (Sire) Into Mischief, it doesn’t get any hotter than that, and Samantha raced the mare.”
“That last race, you talk about a tough race for a Grade 2, with (victorious) Elate coming back to win the Delaware Handicap,” McGee said. “Brian and I were talking about that in the paddock, that there weren’t any Elates in there today. We were just glad to get it done. But Brian said she had a good feel all the way around, had her ears pricked and was running comfortable. We also turned the tables on that filly that beat us in the Dogwood.”
Jockey Brian Hernandez — Go Google Yourself:
“This is a special race to win because we’ve been here the last 12 years or so at Ellis, and this is their signature race,” Hernandez said. “She’s run in some good races. Her last race at Churchill, she did run against Elate and a couple of other Grade 1 winners, and she ran a respectable race. But today we kind of set it up to where we thought she was the best horse and just let her show that. She got into a nice rhythm and was pretty confident in herself the whole race, and she was able to run around there do what she needed to do.”
Trainer Buff Bradley — Divine Queen (2nd):
“She ran well,” said Buff Bradley, Divine Queen’s trainer, co-owner and breeder who also trained co-owned and bred Groupie Doll, the two-time champion for whom the stakes is named. “Calvin rode her perfectly. We knew we were going to try to go out there, since we had the one hole, and try to control the pace a little bit. It looked like the 4, Paul McGee’s horse, had us the whole way, was right on our outside the whole way. But Divine Queen never gave up. She just kept trying, and that’s the way she is. She’s all heart. I’m proud of her. We’ll be back next year.”
Jockey Calvin Borel — Divine Queen:
“I thought she ran good. She struggled a little bit on the track, but we just got outrun. She ran her race. She’ll be all right.”

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds

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