Anderson, Indiana – The Western Ideal filly Ella Christina, who had demonstrated her disregard for the tote board when she won a division of the Adioo Volo at the Meadows at $114.80, again pulled a big upset, this time in the Breeders Crown 3-year-old Filly Pace elimination Friday night at Hoosier Park, storming home from seventh at the top of the stretch to post a 1:51 victory and return $72.00 to her scattered backers.
The favorites were all in the early mix, as Caviart Ally left from the rail, putting Agent Q in behind her, then let Idyllic Beach go near the :26.2 quarter, only to retake in early backstretch. Nearing the :55.2 half, even-money favorite Blazin Britches came with a big burst but could not clear the leader on the turn, and started to back off past the 1:23 three-quarters.
Caviart Ally had the lead into the stretch, with Idyllic Beach going to the passing lane and Agent Q swinging wide to challenge. But this group was joined late by Ella Christina, who was angled progressively wider by driver Tim Tetrick and went around Agent Q, storming down the center of the track to edge Idyllic Beach by a head, with Agent Q another length back.
This division drew 11 entrants, and under the Breeders Crown rules at Hoosier, which starts nine across and a trailing 10 horse, the top two horses accepting byes automatically got into next week’s final. The remaining nine raced Friday to eliminate one horse. Tequila Monday and Obvious Blue Chip were the two fillies getting byes into the championship event.
Ella Christina will draw a post between one and five as a result of her victory, while the rest go into an open draw. Behind Idyllic Beach and Agent Q in order were Carol’s Z Tam, Caviart Ally, Inverse Hanover, Blazin Britches, Jaye’s A Lady, and Terrortina, the last-named the unfortunate “odd filly out”.
The winner tallied for the seventh time this season for trainer Nick Surick, whose Nick Surick Stable LLC co-owns the winner with J. L. Benson Stables Inc., William Daggett Jr. and Lawrence Vukovic. Surick noted that the Hanover Shoe Farms-bred filly had not been at her best in her previous start, the Courageous Lady at Northfield where she finished sixth, but he was all smiles after this event.