TORONTO, October 22 – Inflexibility, ridden by Luis Contreras, overcame a troubled start and traffic-filled trip to eke out a neck win in Sunday’s featured $125,000 Carotene Stakes, at Woodbine.
Bumped leaving the gate in the mile and one-eighth turf event, 4-5 top choice Inflexibility was quickly settled by Contreras, as the trio of Silent Sonet, Ghostly Presence and Mythical Mission led the field through early fractions of :25.34 and :49.29.
Silent Sonet, on top by a head at the stretch call, still had to contend with the game duo of Mythical Mission and Ghostly Presence, while Contreras desperately looked for a seam to unleash an outside run with Inflexibility.
When the opportunity finally arose for the favourite, the Chad Brown trainee saved her best for last, tracking down a scary good Ghostly Presence, to notch a neck win in 1.49.00 over ‘firm’ going in the race for Ontario-bred three-year-old fillies.
Ghostly Presence was 2 ¼-lengths ahead of Mythical Mission for runner-up honours, while Silent Sonet was fourth.
Contreras was both relieved and pleased that Inflexibility found a way to make a trip to the winner’s circle.
“The number one (Ghostly Presence) really came to the outside and put her head in front of my horse,” said Contreras. “I was a little bit worried, but after that, I didn’t want my filly to make a middle move.”
The veteran rider’s patience was tested again late, as he worked overtime to find daylight for Inflexibility.
“After that break that happened, I just wanted to keep her in my hands,” offered Contreras. “I didn’t want her to make that middle move. I was just looking to the outside. I don’t want to bother anybody. I just waited a little bit longer. Once I was clear, I put her outside and she gave me everything.”
It was the second career stakes score for the daughter of Scat Daddy, who won the Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine in July, just under a month after finishing third to fellow filly Holy Helena in the Queen’s Plate.
Bred by Anderson Farms, Inflexibility came into the Carotene off a fourth-place effort in the Grade 2 Sands Point Stakes at Belmont on September 16.
She now has three wins, one second and two thirds for owners Klaravich Stables and William Lawrence.
Inflexibility paid $3.80, $2.40 and $2.10, combining with Ghostly Presence ($6.90, $4.70) for a $21 (2-1) exactor. A 2-1-6 (Mythical Mission, $3.30) triactor returned $59 while a $1 Superfecta [2-1-6-3 (Silent Sonet)] was worth $49.65.