Speightstown Filly Prevails in Battle of Firsters at Gulfstream

The late money came for the well-tried Penumbras Maker (Empire Maker), but in a battle of the race debutantes, Moyglare Stud Farm’s LOVE APPEALS (f, 3, Speightstown–Gioia Stella, by Medaglia d’Oro) kicked in from the rail and just got the better of a final-furlong struggle with fellow 7-2 chance Delahaye (Medaglia d’Oro) in the Thursday opener from Gulfstream Park. Securing the box seat as Penumbras Maker showed the most early interest, the homebred relaxed kindly enough for Joel Rosario on the back of the front-runner down the backstretch and into the second turn. Full of run, but lacking running room as the field neared the stretch Love Appeals was ridden for luck and looked like she was going to split rivals to deliver her challenge. Instead, Rosario rolled the dice up the fence, and Love Appeals–momentarily in tight to the inside of Penumbras Maker–fought on bravely to the wire to win the photo from Delahaye, who rallied hard in the three path and proved an unlucky loser. O/B-Moyglare Stud Farm Ltd (KY); T-Christophe Clement.

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