Joy’s Rocket takes off in My Dear Stakes

August 1, 2020

TORONTO, August 1, 2020 – Team Hanley’s undefeated two-year-old filly Joy’s Rocket was impressive in her stakes debut at Woodbine Racetrack on Saturday, taking off in the $100,000 My Dear Stakes to win by 2-3/4 lengths under Luis Contreras.

Joy’s Rocket launched to the lead in the 5-1/2-furlong Tapeta test and clocked fractions of :21.94 and :45.44 while prompted by Rocket Reload. The Steve Asmussen trainee shook off her main rival in the stretch and won her first stakes outing by nearly three lengths in 1:05.10.

Favoured Road to Romance pressed three-wide early but settled into stalking position behind the front-runners and then made a bid moving into the stretch to get up for second-place, with Rotary rallying to her outside for third.

Emmeline rounded out the superfecta with Rocket Reload, supplement Queen Rhonda and Silent Mamba completing the run down.

Joy’s Rocket was the 8-5 second choice after winning at first asking over Churchill Downs’s dirt track in sloppy conditions on June 28. Today, she returned $5.50 to win.

“She was very professional pretty much the whole way. From the beginning of the race to the end, she was so professional and I was very confident with her,” praised Contreras after taking his second My Dear title (his first was with Dream It Is in 2017). “I saw the race at Churchill when she won. It was a muddy track and she just went to the lead. I wasn’t too worried because horses with this kind of talent, I think it’s easy to adjust to whichever track they go.”

Bred in Florida by Weston Thoroughbreds Training & Sales, the Anthony’s Cross-Queenie’s Pride filly is now two-for-two to start her career.

Joy’s Rocket and jockey Luis Contreras winning the $100,000 My Dear Stakes on Saturday, Aug. 1 at Woodbine Racetrack. (Michael Burns Photo)
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