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Gamine outfoots foes in $500,000 Ballerina S. (G1)

August 28, 2021

Gamine triumphs in the 2021 Ballerina S. (G1) – NYRA photo

Gamine’s championship form was on full display in Saturday’s $500,000 Ballerina S. (G1) as the 4-year-old Into Mischief filly zipped to a front-running victory in the seven-furlong contest.

The Ballerina is a “Win and You’re In” for the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1) at Del Mar in November. Gamine won that race last year to wrap up her Eclipse Award winning season.

Ahead right from the outset on Saturday, Gamine rolled through fractions of :23.20 and :45.68 with a one-length lead over Estilo Talentoso, who began to fade after a half-mile. Lake Avenue took up the chase in the stretch, but wasn’t a serious threat as Gamine stopped the timer in 1:21.61, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 104. Her fourth time earning a triple-digit number.

“The :23 felt pretty comfortable, :45 was pretty comfortable,” said Bob Baffert’s assistant Jimmy Barnes. “[They were gaining on her] slightly, but once Johnny got her to switch leads, I wasn’t really concerned. They were moving but we were still running. She sure does enjoy New York. She’s been good and solid. The Gamine machine–that’s her.”

Gamine won the Test S. (G1) and Acorn (G1) by a combined 25 lengths last year. Her overall record is 9-0-0 in 10 starts with earnings of $1,681,500 for Michael Lund Petersen.

“I’m a very happy man,” said Petersen. “I was very nervous today, only because she was giving so much weight away [126 pounds], so you just never know. I was thrilled to see she got the start we wanted. From there, I was just hoping she would hold on.”

Gamine has nearly earned her $1.8 million purchase price back with a return trip to the Breeders’ Cup looming on the horizon.

Pedigree Notes from the TDN:

Gamine is one of 10 Grade I winners and 44 graded victors for super sire Into Mischief. Her stakes-placed dam Peggy Jane is also the dam of the 3-year-old colt Splashtown, a $300,000 FTKOCT purchase. Peggy Jane’s recent produce includes a 2021 colt by Into Mischief. She was bred back to that Spendthrift kingpin for 2022. This is also the family of Canadian champion Dynamic Sky.