(Twirling Queen and rider Francisco Arrieta capture the Mamzelle Stakes at Churchill Downs on Saturday / All Photos by Coady Media)

From the Churchill Downs Media Team / Darren Rogers & Kevin Kerstein:

TWIRLING QUEEN PREVAILS IN $224,930 MAMZELLE AT CHURCHILL DOWNS

         Florida invader Twirling Queen relaxed just behind pacesetter Hot Beach, tipped out leaving the far turn and charged home for a three-quarters of a length victory over Toupie in Saturday’s fifth running of the $224,930 Mamzelle Stakes (Listed) for 3-year-old fillies at Churchill Downs.

          Ridden by Francisco Arrieta and trained by Jose D’Angelo, Twirling Queen clocked 5 ½ furlongs on firm turf in 1:03.12 for Soffia Hernan-Gomez’s GU Racing Stable LLC.

          Breaking alertly from post position No. 6 in the field of 12, Twirling Queen raced to the inside of Hot Beach, who caught a flier out of the gate from post 11 and rattled off fractions of :21.58 and :44.98. Into the turn, 5-2 favorite Imaboutago (IRE) moved into second from the outside to pressure Hot Beach as Twirling Queen was content to let the top two clear around the bend.

At the top of the stretch, Twirling Candy left the rail and tipped out four-wide to commence her best run. She caught the tiring Hot Beach and fading Imaboutago (IRE) with a furlong to run and had plenty left to turn back late runs by Toupie and Cloudwalker.

“In these turf sprint races, getting in the right position is so important,” Arrieta said. “It was the first time I rode her but from her previous starts I could tell she wanted to be pretty close to the lead. My filly broke very sharp from the gate and I had a perfect trip around the turn staying in the clear. The more I asked her down the lane the stronger she got.”

          Twirling Queen, who made her turf debut and entered the Mamzelle off back-to-back victories over Tapeta at Gulfstream Park, paid $23.44, $11.48 and $6.56 as the 10-1 sixth betting choice. Toupie, at odds of 7-1 under Jorge Ruiz, returned $7.82 and $4.94. Cloudwalker, with Cristian Torres up at 3-1, paid $3.68.

          Nice as Pie, Big Trouble, Pipit, Niki Nine Doors, Hot Beach, Tipsy Runner, Fibber, Imaboutago (IRE) and Tipsy Tammy completed the order of finish. Honey Dijon, Let Them Watch, Moonlit Lady, Parola Sicura, Rhapsody and Twirl Around were scratched.

The victory was worth $130,320 and increased Twirling Queen’s earnings to $292,563 with a record of 7-4-0-0.

Twirling Queen is a daughter of Twirling Candy out of the Kantharos mare Adventurous Lady and was bred in Kentucky by Pursuit of Success LLC.

MAMZELLE QUOTES

 

Francisco Arrieta (jockey, Twirling Queen, winner) – “In these turf sprint races, getting in the right position is so important. It was the first time I rode her but from her previous starts I could tell she wanted to be pretty close to the lead. My filly broke very sharp from the gate and I had a perfect trip around the turn staying in the clear. The more I asked her down the lane the stronger she got.”

Jorge Ruiz (jockey, Toupie, runner-up) – “I had a really good trip and she traveled OK in the early stages. I think the distance might have been a little short for her because she was running the best as they got closer to the finish.”