Call Pat closed with a torrid rush along the inside to upset champion Untapable on Saturday in the Grade 2, $350,000 Azeri Stakes at Oaklawn Park. She won by a neck over Untapable, while it was another half-length back in third to Streamline.
The Azeri was the first of three graded stakes on Saturday’s card at Oaklawn. It also served as a prep for the track’s Grade 1, $600,000 Apple Blossom Handicap on April 15, and that race is a goal for Call Pat, according to her trainer, Brad Cox.
Call Pat ($12.20) trailed for six furlongs as Sarah Sis and High Dollar Woman went out and cut fractions of 23.11 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 47.83 for the half-mile. Untapable stalked in third and came three wide around the final turn to take over through six furlongs in 1:13.15. She increased her advantage as Call Pat split horses in the stretch, put in a strong bid along the rail the final sixteenth of a mile, and was up nearing the wire under Joe Rocco Jr.
“Joe Rocco does a great job on this mare,” said Cox. “He knows her. He’s ridden her at Indiana. He won on her here at Oaklawn, so he obviously knows the mare very well. He knew he couldn’t sweep around all those good mares today. Come up the inside, split horses. He did a great job.”
Untapable was making her first start since October.
“She ran great,” said jockey Florent Geroux. “She tried hard. I was just going a little too easy too soon. She never saw the one coming.”
Steve Asmussen, who trains Untapable, said she ran a solid race and would be pointed for the Apple Blossom, which she won last year after finishing second in the Azeri in her seasonal debut. Asmussen told Oaklawn officials she would train up to the Apple Blossom in Hot Springs.
Call Pat earned $210,000 for the biggest victory of her career in the Azeri. She has now won 7 of 30 starts and $614,589. She is a 6-year-old mare by Lawyer Ron and was bred in Kentucky by Don Ameche III, Don Ameche Jr., and Prancin. Call Pat races for Miller Racing.
See original article on DRF.com